Five Things to Think About in Your Rental Agreement in the New Year
Now that we have all survived the holidays, and before we all get busy with Spring and Summer business, it is a good time to take a look at your Rental Agreement and see if it needs a spring cleaning before you continue using it in 2019. 

Here are a few things I like to look at when reviewing a Rental Agreement:
  1. Am I current with the requirements of my state law?
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Jeffrey J. Greenberger is a Partner with the law firm of Greenberger & Brewer, LLP, in Cincinnati, Ohio and is licensed to practice in the states of Ohio and Kentucky. You can reach Jeff at (513) 698-9350 or .   
Join us for the
2019 PASSA Owners & Managers Annual Meeting & Conference

April 25, 2019

101 Doe Mountain Lane
Lehigh Valley, PA
Reasons to Attend the 2019 PASSA
Owners & Managers
Annual Meeting & Conference
The Pennsylvania SSA 2019 Owners & Managers Annual Meeting and Conference will be held on April 25, 2019 at the Bear Creek Mountain Resort and Conference Center in Lehigh Valley, PA, and there are a number of great reasons to attend. The PASSA 2018 Owners & Managers Annual Meeting and Conference held in State College, PA had around 100 attendees which gave many opportunities for vendors, owners, managers, and employees alike to network, learn about best practices, and attend educational sessions tailored to address topics relevant to the industry in Pennsylvania.  The Keystore discussed the benefits of attending your state’s annual meeting from an owner-operator’s perspective, a vendor’s perspective, and from a manager’s perspective with Frank Certo, Director of Operations at STORExpress, Pat Watson, V.P. Self Storage Systems & Custom Engineered Buildings at Flexospan, and Amanda Dice, Regional Manager at Storage World.
The top three reasons they gave for attending the PASSA Owners & Managers Annual Meeting and Conference were:
·          Networking with colleagues and vendors
·          Learning about best practices in the industry
·          Industry and State-Specific Educational Sessions
The first reason Certo, Watson, and Dice mentioned was the importance of networking at the PASSA Annual Meeting and Conference. Networking is an important reason to attend your state’s annual meeting and conference because it allows you to talk to your colleagues within the industry and discuss operations, new products and services, and make new contacts. This year there will be a networking lunch, sponsored by Flexospan, which will include open time to visit with exhibitors. When asked why Flexospan decided to sponsor the networking lunch, Pat Watson said that they wanted to support the PASSA and their annual meeting and conference because it is such a personal place to meet with colleagues and customers.

Click here to read the rest of the article.
Frank Certo
Director of Operations

Frank has over 25 years as a professional leader and business coach. He captains a team of winners specializing in sales management, operations, unique marketing programs, personnel development and staffing. His experience spans several industries, including the last 15 years in the self-storage industry. Frank has served on the Board of the PASSA for the last 6 years. 
Patricia Watson, Vice President, Self Storage Systems & Custom Engineered Buildings for Flexospan Steel Buildings, Manufactures of Industrial & Commercial Roofing & Siding

Pat has been with Flexospan since September of 1985 starting in the receptionist position and shortly after went in to the Self Storage and Custom engineered buildings division. She does takeoffs, pricing, sales, ordering materials, manages the engineering department, billing, shipping and customer service.

Pat is past president of the Pennsylvania Self Storage Association and is serving on the boards of Maine and Maryland Self Storage Associations.
Amanda Dice, CSSM
Regional Manager,
Storage World

As Amanda transitions into her new role as Regional Manager of Storage World, she is eager to attend the PASSA annual meeting to learn new aspects of the industry, hear about different products and programs, as well as to network with other professionals in the business. She is excited to attend for the first time since beginning her career in the self storage industry thirteen years ago. She looks forward to learning all that she can and meeting people in person who she normally only communicates with over the phone or through email.

SSA Webinar Series - 2019

FREE to PASSA Members

Invitation to register sent to your e-mail!

Topic: Omni-Channel Marketing and Communication

Presenter  : Holly Fiorello,

Tuesday, June 11, 2019
11:00 am ET

Our webinar will be hosted by
Holly Fiorello,
Director of Marketing at CallPotential
Benefiting Local Communities with
Charity Storage
The Pennsylvania Self Storage Association is proud to be an In-Kind Sponsor of Charity Storage. Charity Storage is the first national self storage industry charity and raises money for other non-profits through its Charity Storage Auctions. Charity Storage partners with existing storage facilities and operations to raise money for a charity designated by the facility/operator through auctions. Charity Storage also works to designate Drop-Off Points for charitable donations. In the partnership between Charity Storage and existing facilities, the proceeds from auctions will go toward the charity designated by the facility/operator (60%), Kure It Cancer Research (20%), the Self Storage Association Foundation Scholarship Program (10%), and to Charity Storage to offset administrative costs (10%). As an In-Kind Sponsor, PASSA donates time, material goods or provides advertising and other services for Charity Storage.

Click here for a video to learn more about Charity Storage and its partnership with SSA.
Legislative Updates
The Latest in Harrisburg
PASSA and SSA are working with the legislature to introduce a bill that, if passed, would allow for alternative methods of advertising lien sales and would set a late fee safe harbor of $20 or 20% of the monthly rent, whichever is greater.  

Visit the PASSA website ( click here ) for legislative updates.
Changes to the International
Building Code Affect Self Storage
With the support of its Code Committee, the Self Storage Association successfully pursued several key changes to the 2021 International Building Code. 

  1. An exception has been added to IBC Section 2902.3.3 to permit an increase in the location (to greater than every other floor) and maximum distance of travel (to greater than 500 ft) for restrooms. The location and travel distance must be approved by the code official.
  2. The maximum allowable height of sprinklered facilities made of Type IIB materials (unprotected steel) and Type IIIB materials (noncombustible or fire-retardant-treated wood stud exterior walls and any interior construction) has been increased from 3 stories to 4 stories. The Code continues to have total floor and building square footage limits. 
  3. Pursuant to modified IBC Section 903.2.9, storage facilities are exempt from the automatic sprinkler system requirement if: (1) the total fire area is 12,000 sq. ft. or less; (2) the combined total fire areas are 24,000 sq. ft. or less; (3) the facility is no greater than one story above grade plane; and (4) all storage spaces are accessed directly from the exterior. 

These changes go into effect as they are adopted by local and state governments over the next several years. Prior to the adoption on the local and state level, storage developers can request that the code official rely on the 2021 changes as acceptable alternative methods of construction pursuant to section 104.11 of the existing International Building Code.

Please email Joe Doherty with any questions or to receive supporting documentation for these changes.
Renew for 2019

Renewing your current membership is as simple as going to our website. If you are not already a member, you can also join through our website.

Visit the PASSA website ( click here ) today to renew your 2019 membership or join to start enjoying the Pennsylvania SSA's membership benefits.
Catching Up with STORExpress
The Keystore recently spoke with Pennsylvania Self Storage Association members Frank Certo and Jess Casto of STORExpress to discuss what their business has been up to so far this year. STORExpress has been busy with new projects, marketing, and community involvement. 

STORExpress has been around for 22 years and, like many self storage operations, spent its first ten years figuring out how to navigate the self storage industry. Now STORExpress has ten facilities in Pennsylvania and Ohio and will be adding two more Pennsylvania locations. The first new Pennsylvania location will be coming this spring in Mt. Lebanon, PA at 98 Vanadium Road. Another new location in Pittsburgh at South Hills is also coming soon and will be located at 2140 Sawmill Run Boulevard.

Since getting the hang of things in its first ten years, STORExpress has begun to buy larger spaces and has become a leader in innovative storage spaces including art space, band rooms, and indoor parking showrooms. Purchasing larger spaces led to specialty spaces through reimagining how to use bigger spaces such as a bowling alley or an old school. 

Click here to read to the full article and see what innovative projects STORExpress has been involved in.

STORExpress has been operating in the self-storage business since 1999 and has quickly grown in the Pittsburgh market place as the communities affordable self-storage solution. After 20 years in the industry, STORExpress now has 11 properties throughout the city and 1 in neighboring Warren OH. In early 2009, the company started to diversify with art & band studios, indoor car showrooms for vehicle storage, and even contract/hobby space. With a strong focus on investing in the local communities, STORExpress has now become “The neighborly place for life’s needed space.”  
STORExpress gives back to their community with their OPERATION: Warm Heart coat and clothing drive at the end of last year.
Customer Service-
Self Storage Best Practices
We have all read articles on great customer service. We have all sat in a seminar on great customer service. We have all experienced customer service. We all have memories of great customer service. We all have stories of poor customer service.
I ask store managers all the time “What is the most important thing(s) that you do? Most of them will say “customer service”, others will say that the most important thing they do is to rent units and collect money. Which is the right answer? Well the most important is renting units and collecting money but you are not going to be as successful if your customer service is lacking. The ability to rent units and collect money is critical in Self-Storage – without either there is no success. However, great customer service is the qualifier whether your Self-Storage asset’s success is minimal, marginal or incredible! When analyzing the performance of a Self-Storage property with respect to customer service, it is important to measure how we are executing against the best practices that result in the best occupancy and revenue!
There are many customer service “best practices” that most industry experts agree on. Here are a few examples:
·          Stand when a customer walks thru our office doors.
·          Smile in person and on the phone.
·          Be the expert – find a solution for your customer.
·          Keep a clean property.
·          Keep a maintained property.
·          Offer features for security, access and convenience. Cameras, electronic access, free moving carts, etc.
·          Offer online access to account information and the ability to make online payments or auto-pay.
During this article, let’s talk about four areas that we really need to improve upon in our industry. Each is a customer service best practice. These best practices will help our rentals and our income month after month!

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Lynn Sykes

Lynn is the Director of Operations for Storage Asset Management, Inc. based in York PA. Storage Asset Management is the largest, privately owned 3 rd party Self-Storage Management Company. Her previous experience was Director of Operations for AAAA Self Storage Management Group and Suburban Management Group. She has over 16 years’ experience in the self-storage industry. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Virginia Self Storage Association and is a frequent presenter at self-storage annual meetings, national conventions and training seminars.
Featured Publication

Self storage is the rental of non-residential real estate. Each tenant is required to execute a written rental agreement that typically states that it can only be modified in writing. While a good rental agreement will work well for most customers, you will have customers and situations that require that additional forms be used in conjunction with the rental agreement. This manual provides addendums and forms to deal with business situations that frequently arise at self storage facilities. The forms provided are models that you may have to modify to conform to your rental agreement and other documents. For example, all the forms provided use the terms “Owner” and “Tenant” to refer to the contracting parties. If you use “Owner” and “Occupant”, “Landlord” and “Occupant” or “Lessor” and “Lessee” in your rental agreement, you should modify the forms accordingly. (sold electronically via email)

Click here to order today!