Helping a Tenant Move Between Units

Jon Fesmire |

As a self storage operator, you want to make moving between units as easy as possible for your tenants. A good experience for them means they’re more likely to recommend your facility to their friends and family, which could earn you new customers.

You likely deal with tenants moving in and out of storage units every day, but if you don’t have any set procedures for helping them move between units, here are some tips for making the process easier.

Share the Information

Make sure it’s as easy as possible for tenants to get information about moving from one unit to another. One of the best ways to do that is to have a section on your website describing the process.

You may want to have an FAQ section on your website, including the question “How can I move between units?”

When a tenant calls or comes into your office to ask about switching units, explain the basics and answer their questions. Once they’re satisfied, you can let them know that if they need to refer to the information, it’s also on your website.

Going Over the Move

There may be a new contract involved in moving to a new storage unit, or an addendum to the current lease. This can be done in the office, or even all online. You may want to set up a digital signature option, which will allow the tenant to legally sign the lease from their computer.

Unlike a new move-in, generally there will be no administration fee. The tenant will only pay the difference in the rent (if applicable), prorated if they move on any day other than the first day of their billing cycle.

If they need to figure out what new size they’ll need, feel free to refer them to our StorageFront unit size guide.

Once they have rented the new unit, make sure they know the time frame that they have to move.

Moving Services

For this, you may want to consider adding in-house moving services to your business model. You can form a relationship with a moving company that you outsource the labor to rather than hiring new staff. When tenants schedule their unit swap, inform them that you can provide movers to help.

This will involve a new contract for the move. You will want to work that out with whichever moving company you work with, but here are some things you can expect:

  • The moving company may specify an hourly or flat rate. You don’t need to make much for your facility on this transaction, since the point of it is to help the customer move, keep them happy, and keep them at your facility. You’re simply facilitating that for them. Work on a good rate deal with the moving company for yourself, and add enough on top of it to cover your administrative costs

  • The contract may need to specify that the movers have the right to enter each unit, so long as they are with the tenant or the tenant has lent them the key. They may also want the tenant to pay an insurance fee in case any of them get injured. The contract should also specify a time frame for the move. A representative of your facility should have the right to sign the contract on the moving company’s behalf.

  • The customer can hire his or her own movers. In this case, he or she will sign a contract with them. On your website, have a box your tenant can check if they are going to do this, or ask them about it in your office. Inform them that they will need to tell you when they arrive with the movers, so you can allow more than one vehicle through with the tenant’s gate code.

With the updated website information and a partnership with a moving company in place, you’ll be set to provide your tenants with what they need to easily move between storage units.