How do millennials use storage units

How toDecember 6, 2020

Self-storage and millennials have both been strange beasts. Both appeared on the scene fairly recently, and have taken the world by the storm. Nowadays, millennials are finishing college and getting in touch with the world of real estate, and they play a huge factor in it. And where there is a need for homes – there will be a need to expand these more. And that’s why self-storage options have been quite popular with the millennial crowd. There are many reports of hundreds of millennials talking to moving companies Northern VA in search of their perfect unit. Therefore, it is important to examine just how millennials use storage units in order to try and predict what sort of effect this will have on the “market.” Keep reading to find your answers.

It is cheaper to rent self-storage units than apartments

Experts have noted that many millennials are looking at both the moving and storage Washington DC offers them. Usually, they find the real estate options lacking, while the storage ones are always amazing. A storage unit will cost around 30 percent less per square foot than an apartment. This means that it will pay off to rent a bigger unit while keeping your living quarters smaller. And that’s exactly what many millennials are doing.

Millennials are using their storage units like closets.

Basically, a lot of people are using their self-storage unit as an off-site closet. They do not only store clothes there, but anything you would put in your storage unit too. After all, this makes sense. Millennials are usually looking to rent apartments in downtown areas. These, sadly, do not boast too much space – or the basement areas that many places in the suburbs have. What downtowns do boast are self-storage facilities.

Therefore, while the rent demand is increasing, so is the self-storage demand. Millennials are using them as an added room, where they would store things they might not use every day – but that they do come for often. That way, they save money per square foot and afford to live right in the heart of the busiest cities in the nation.

For how long do millennials use storage units?

With this in mind, the question isn’t really whether millennials are using storage units – because they are. It is for how long they need the units that’s important. After all, longer uses mean it might be harder to find storage services you require in the DMV area. Luckily, their stay doesn’t seem to be too long.

a clock to measure how long millennials use storage units
Millennials do not seem to stay in one place for too long.

No matter how much millennials try to stand out, they behave more and more like Gen X each day. This also includes amassing wealth and getting into their own homes. But even as they do that, they also rent storage spaces – experts note. Many believe that millennials actually make up the biggest share of the storage users across the whole nation. There are estimates that put their numbers at 14%, whereas Gen X is following at 11%, and baby boomers are falling behind on 7%. And this is why they play a huge part in the shape of the storage services today.

Not only that, but their numbers keep on growing. Ask any onsite storage services company, and they will tell you that millennials are the fastest-growing customer age group they have. The problem, though, is how shortly they rent their units. Since they are always on the hunt for a job, they do not really stay in one place that often. This means they are switching from one storage unit to another fairly frequently.

How much space do they take?

Another trend that you can notice is the size of storage units millennials use. As their “lengths of stay” keep growing shorter, so does the space they need. Usually, millennials will pick the 5×5 units over any other. Experts believe this is because millennials just have less stuff than other age groups. This also goes hand in hand with the notion that millennials use their storage unit as a closet, which we already discussed.

Millennials do not seem to have too many items.

How does this affect the market? Well, usually, if there is more demand for a unit, this means that the rents will grow for it. That’s why rents for a non-climate-controlled unit with the size 5×5 grew 2 percent, while the rents for the same unit with climate control grew 3 percent between 2017 and 2018 according to research. At the same time, 10×10 non-climate-controlled rents stayed the same, while they even declined 2 percent for those units with climate-control.

However, it’s important to note that this does not apply in every city of the nation. The trend we described happened in Seattle, and it can also be translated into many other places – but not all. While they are quite strong in numbers, millennials don’t seem to be able to topple the costs and rents just yet – which can be a good thing. So, before you look for a unit, make sure to explore the trends and see if you will be affected too.

Could millennials bring some change?

The question then remains whether or not millennials would be able to change the landscape of storage units. The answers, sadly, are still not clear. However, what is clear is that they helped shape up the need for storage – and helped expand the industry. Taking into account that the oldest millennials nowadays are just under 40, this puts them in the right position to bring a change.

With their need for flexible lifestyles and mobility, they also have the needed push for it. And millennials use storage units like the other generations more and more, after finding stable work and starting their own family. So, no one can say with certainty what the future will hold. All we can do is be ready to embrace the change.

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