By Mark Sherman
The toy storage industry has been growing in recent years as more households across the United States own two or more cars and recreational opportunities continue to expand. This trend will continue into 2023. While demand has outpaced the production capacity of this market, savvy investors have caught on and are rushing into the toy storage space with innovations that help to keep up with consumer needs. Looking ahead, these toy storage hot trends for 2023 promise for continued success in the industry.
Decline in Class C Properties
This year will continue to see a decline in Class C properties. These are properties that offer outdoor, uncovered storage for RVs, trailers and boats. Where these properties are the most affordable for the financial conscious consumer, many Class C lots are more than 20 years old and tend to be located in less than desirable locations. Consumers increasingly favor higher security options that better protect their investments, even if they come at an additional cost.
Additionally, Class C owners are modernizing their businesses by transitioning to enclosed structures, however this progress is being met with regulations that mandate the relinquishment of their outdoor storage areas in order to secure approval for expansion. Though it initially creates a challenge, these sacrifices may ultimately bring higher efficiency and greater income levels for Class C operators.
Climate Control Is Key
Climate control continues to be a coveted feature in toy storage builds across the U.S. due to its ability to protect cars and boats from the damaging effects of temperature fluctuations. More consumers are embracing climate-controlled storage spaces as their preferred safeguard for valuable investments that could be compromised by extreme heat or cold temperatures.
Climate control keeps temperatures within a certain range year-round, preventing damage from extreme temperatures or humidity levels that could otherwise occur during summer months or periods of heavy rain. Climate control is an added value toy storage operators can provide to their customers as a way to differentiate themselves from competitors.
Security Features for Peace of Mind
Technology continues to revolutionize security this year, promoting greater peace of mind for customers. Motion sensors alert staff if someone attempts to access facilities without permission and signal unauthorized occupants in RVs or boats stored on-site. State-of-the art video surveillance with clearer imaging allows for greater vigilance against vandals and thieves, alongside biometric locks that prevent key duplication and electronic gateways offering an extra layer of protection. This toolkit makes it vastly more difficult for criminals to get into toy storage units–providing safer investments across the board!
Remote Management Revs Up
Remote management solutions have also been gaining traction in this market, and continue to do so in 2023. By leveraging cloud computing and IoT technology, toy storage providers can streamline their day-to-day operations and increase employee productivity. Advancements in this area have made remote management easy to understand and easy to navigate with mobile friendly designs and a simplified user interface.
For those with multiple locations, operators enjoy the ability to run simple operations such as rentals, payments and online rate change or adjustments remotely. With all these features combined, it’s no wonder why remote management solutions are gaining traction in the self-storage industry.
Savvy Solar Power
2023 is set to be a year of sustainable innovation with more toy storage properties choosing to take advantage of solar power, a trend that was seen as “up and coming” in 2016 and has been considered a “mainstream energy source” for storage operators since 2020. Capitalizing on solar power is a savvy move that not only helps the environment but also increases market value and brings tax incentives–making it both green and profitable! For instance, imagine 10,000 homes powered by one 400-unit storage property in just 12 months; this could be achieved when operators choose to install solar panels directly onto rooftops, ground surfaces of their property, or construct them into cleverly designed carport structures over parking lots.
Electricity is one the largest operating expenses for toy storage operators, particularly those offering enclosed spaces for RVs, trailers and boats. Incorporating the use of solar can cut utility costs while increasing property value and maximizing return.
The toy storage industry is only going to continue to grow as we see more and more households own multiple cars and have expansive recreational opportunities. As investors rush into the market with new innovations, we can expect to see even greater success in the coming years with Class C Properties expanding their operations, continued incorporation of climate control, improved security through technology, remote management becoming increasingly standard and sustainable solar power innovation.
If you’re looking to get involved in toy storage, research these 2023 trends and find a way to incorporate them into your business model. In doing so, you’ll be ahead of the competition and poised for success.
Mark Sherman brings 30 years of operations management, real estate development and customer experience to S3 Partners, where he oversees business development, planning, project management, client management, retention, self-storage facility build, remodeling, repair, signage, branding and delivery of completed projects to clients.
Partner With An Industry Pro
Investing in an RV, boat and toy storage facility is a huge decision and oftentimes requires a trusted advisor with decades of experience and knowledge. At S3 Partners, we’ve been in this space for years and have seen it all. Whether you’re thinking about building a new facility or adding RV, boat and toy storage to your existing storage business, we’d love to hear about your plans and help you get there right.
No matter the size of your project, our services keep costs down and maximize your return on investment. Visit us at s3.partners.