A storage facility office can make a very important statement for your facility, because a potential tenant is already forming his or her first impression of what their storage experience is going to be like as soon as they walk through the front door. Therefore, I think adequate time and meticulous planning are absolutely necessary to getting the design right, and creating an inviting atmosphere in the office. I have recently redesigned our home office, and planned the layout at two of our other facilities. However, there are some changes that I think need to be made so I am moving in a different direction with our new office.
1. Gate visibility from front desk
2. Parking lot visibility from front desk
3. Merchandise display area that is large enough to feature all the move-in items and boxes, but not look cluttered. It is also important that the display area is not behind the desk and not at the customer’s back. The area needs to be a place where the customers can actually get hands-on with the items available. We have found that displays that are not positioned in the right places do not allow for a high volume of sales.
4. A back wall behind the front counter to display the T.V. with the security cameras
5. A bathroom that is not to close to the front counter
6. A separate office
7. Room for a maintenance closet with a mop sink and enough room for a couple of shelves
8. The kiosk in a place that the customer will see it when they pull up to the office. If it is not located in a good area the customer will most likely not use it. We have experienced this at one of our properties.
Now the question about putting in a kiosk at a new facility…
-The ability to have 24/7 payments and rentals
-Call center that is available to assist customers after hours through the call button located on the kiosk
-Ability to have people rent units and pay their bills when the office is closed, when the manager is out on the property and during holidays
-Cost of $22,000.00 to set it up
-Monthly fee for maintenance
-Broken printers and continued maintenance
We have installed kiosks at the last three facilities we’ve built. The first one we put in at A Storage Solution of Destin has a lot of problems and bugs. However, the newest one we put in at our Broad and York location works exceptionally well. The kiosk manufacturers have certainly come a long way. I do think it is essential in today’s market to offer the kiosk at your facility. It does provide extra service for you customers. Also, what owner does not want to have the ability to rent 24/7 when their managers are not in the office? More rentals = More income.
You only get one shot at the office design. You can’t rebuild it once it is constructed. It is key to asses all of your problems from your other facility offices so you can address them in your new design. After a couple of office designs under my belt I am hoping that this one will be my best, yet!