Full infographic + write-up below:
Over the last two decades, we’ve seen a tremendous increase in the number of self-storage facilities in the United States. The self-storage industry has been one of the fastest-growing sectors in the commercial real estate market. According to the Self Storage Association, the overall quantity of U.S. self-storage space doubled in a mere five years— it went from 1 billion square feet in 2000 to over 2 billion square feet in 2005. During the zenith of self-storage development, 2004-2005, 8,694 new facilities were added. This is a clear indicator that there is a remarkable demand for self-storage.
As of June 2011, there were more than 50,100 self-storage facilities in the continental U.S. This is particularly incredible when one considers there are approximately 58,000 facilities worldwide. In other words, the U.S. is responsible for around 86% of the entire global self-storage market.
Of the 50,100 facilities here, 4,850 are owned by four publicly traded REITs (Public Storage, Extra Space, Sovran/Uncle Bob’s, CubeSmart) and U-Haul. So 9.6% of all self-storage facilities in this country are owned by the five biggest companies. By looking at this statistic, you could infer that entrepreneurs across the country sprang to action, taking advantage of the colossal demand for self-storage— this is exactly the case. As of June 2011, 27,650 facilities – 90% of all self-storage companies – were owned by small business entrepreneurs. Power to the mom-and-pops!
Not only has there been an increase in the number of facilities, there has been an increase in revenue as well. In 2011, the four publicly traded self-storage REITs earned higher returns than any other public REIT. Clearly, we do not have access to the private companies’ financials, but if the publicly traded REITs’ financials are any indicator, the self-storage industry is as robust as ever.