Following on from the last article about the initial considerations to make if you want to take the plunge into running a self storage facility, it would be good to consider the numbers and where you are going with the business in a bit more detail. Getting the various components in place, location, building, insurance, design, staff, safety etc., is important, but none of it is going to happen without investment and a keen awareness of where the business is going.
The detail is where the real work begins, as at some stage you are going to need to justify to yourself and to funders that the idea has legs, and should it take of then the next question is how you are planning to grow the business. Obviously opening more outlets and increasing presence is one way, but there might be more creative methods on which to apply your brand by dipping your toes into other lucrative waters of expertise. A point of reference is to look into the businesses of those who have done it before, and how they have succeeded and branched out. If you have operated similar businesses before, now is the time to demonstrate how you can adapt and evolve.
You may want to get your eye on some properties similar in scope and easily adaptable to the rigours of redevelopment, and the sums on how much the buildings are going to cost to run need to be worked out, including all the lighting, heating, and local business rates with nothing missed out, and with projection of how these sums may change in future years. You may need to justify why this property would better serve self storage, rather than being converted into a different type of business space, so think about a convincing argument in your favour. It is very likely if you are obtaining a large empty commercial premises that you will need a loan to accomplish this, at least in part, and how that can be repaid including the interest rates and over what period of time whilst still breaking even is an important backbone to the entire plan.
Investors are going to want to know, once everything is built and ready to go, how you are going to attract customers. What is the advertising campaign going to look like and how much is it going to cost? Assuming that, like many startup incentives, you can present potential customers with lower price options, how are you going to demonstrate that they will be given better value that they have enjoyed with the other long lasting storage facility near them? How customers will be retained after the initial burst of special offers is another nut to crack. And who are your customers – the average man on the street who needs to make a bit of space at home, business customers who need a stockroom, removals companies – and is your advertising appropriate to them? Also some idea as to the sustainability of the business during times of economic recession would be a key question asked.
So getting this all down on paper will take many long nights of planning and calculating, but this sort of preparation will give you and anybody with a vested interest in the business assurance that expectations are realistic and finances are under control.
Posted in: Business