Sunday, February 6, 2011

Storage Unit Auctions

Storage unit auctions are getting very popular. Mainly due to a new show called "Storage Wars". Only showing the success stories, this show shares what four guys have won after they bid thousands of dollars.
Well,  here's the rest of the story. Most of what you bid on is junk. Things like clothes, toys and housewares.
Also, you are bidding and purchasing other peoples hardships. So, what I may think is junk or dumpster worthy items, it's really someones memories or something they value on a personal level. If you find things like photos or documents it's only fair that you return them to the storage unit facility. Sometimes the things you bid on from these units are everything the person owned. and don't be surprised if the owner of the stuff is one of the bidders.

The thing that bothers me about these auctions are the companies hosting have been seen stealing before and during the auction. They will tell you some story about looking for personal items but watch closely... they are really looking for jewelry and coins. Oh well, they cant see everything in those boxes!

 Anyway, I have been to a few auctions and must admit it is a rush! My daughter Kimberly and I spent a couple hours bidding on a unit in west Fresno  and YEP  we came away with some cool stuff! Fishing tackle, vintage glass, quilts, housewares... So far, I've made a little money back with selling the stuff on eBay.

Kimberly enjoying some time with her ol' Dad

Kimi really cracked me up! She jumps right in there to get a closer look then looks back at me and either gives me a nod or shakes her head. She was right every time!

My pick-up loaded with junk

You usually do not get much time to look before the bidding begins. Here are a few tips for bidding on storage bins -

Location - look for facilities in money towns or nice neighborhoods.

Packing - How did the owner pack. Tubs tell you the owner cared enuff to spend a little to store their belongings. Are items wrapped in paper and bubble wrap or just thrown in a cardboard box?

Organization/ Neatness - How well did the owner stack their boxes and  keep their property organized?

Look for hints of what is in the tubs and boxes. Kimi spotted a box that had GLASS written on it. She also noticed smaller print that said Grandmas. That told us the glass may be vintage (she gave me a nod).

Have fun-Take a chair and some snacks... The bidding process takes a while.