Lets take a look at the many reasons why I feel this way.
#1 …This is someone’s hardship. They have fallen on tough times and can’t make ends meet to keep their items that are in storage. Often times, they are in the storage locker or container because they have already lost the house they were once in. No one who’s contents that go to auction are just left behind because of choice to say “I don’t need that stuff…Someone else can have it!”
#2…The debt owed is much higher than the auction makes. This is my pain, being the owner of such a company, people are expecting that everyone makes out in the auction of unpaid storage fees. In reality, .25 cents of every dollar are recovered nationwide, while in the North East, where we are, we barely recover 10 cents on the dollar on these auctions. So a $1000 debt turns into $100, not including the costs of processing the lien and auction. #3…We get countless calls after a show airs asking when our next storage auction is. Again, these are NOT things we look forward to doing. It’s a last resort and legally, the only way to get our container emptied so we can begin renting the unit out to another customer.
As a storage company, and in any other company, you have to understand there will be defaults on money owed. Some people just get into a bind and can’t get out. Some people also think their entitled to a Harley Davidson in the garage before paying the people they owe. In either case, we have to reduce our exposure to these people by keeping close tabs on their accounts. Periodic calls to ask why we havn’t been paid and to see if a weekly payment plan will work to resolve the issue. Sometimes $20/week sounds less than the $100/mo. As a consumer, if you can’t pay your bill, contact the manager of the business and see what you can do to work things out. Not calling, or not answering calls is a worst case scenario and usually an automatic step towards the loss of your goods.
What America needs to do as a whole, from the top (President) down to the very bottom of the workforce is understand this simple rule “IF YOU DON’T HAVE THE MONEY, YOU CAN’T AFFORD IT!” And no…..You’re not entitled to it because you had a bad day at work, or you think you’ll pay it off another day. Learn to manage YOUR money. We can learn how to operate smartphones to find the local coffee shop, or ask it to remind you to empty the trash, but for some reason, we can’t figure out how to manage your own money. If you spend more than you make, you’re spending too much. It’s a pretty simple idea. It’s not our job to teach you this and when you lose your stuff in a storage auction, foreclosure or any other way, you’ll learn the lesson the hard way. Hopefully, the US Government doesn’t have their debt called in, or else we’ll all be foreclosed on, but that is another topic and another blog.