The Future of Self Storage

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As storage spaces across Europe are limited, self storage in the UK continues to rise at a rapid pace, with an annual turnover of £890m. The demand is growing, and despite the UK only owning 47% of the total facilities in Europe and the UK, the occupancy levels are impressively high.

Research has shown that over 2,050 storage spaces are currently operating in the UK, with a rise of 5% in the number of self storage facilities. With such impressive statistics every year, it’s no surprise that trends in the industry continue to progress.

The industry today

While self storage units have always been popular for domestic use, with domestic customers renting 81% of the space, 19% are businesses opening up to the idea of storing their spare office essentials and even products and stock in self storage units today.

72% of self storage users are 40-70 years old, and those renovating their homes are three times more likely to consider using the service. 29% of said customers are utilising storage solutions for moving home.

An interesting element of the industry, despite 89% of customers being satisfied with the service from their self storage company, is that the number of new sites opening has declined, while existing container sites continue to expand in size. From land availability to the impact of increasing costs, it’s difficult to tell the struggle behind new developments, but the pipeline for new sites and expansions of existing buildings within the industry remains promising as demand rises.


Housing market uncertainties

With the world changing so unexpectedly in every country and industry, the housing market is one of the significant factors affected. We are likely to see the industry slow down slightly until the general public feels more secure and confident in the government changes, but the uncertainties could also have a positive impact. If mortgages become too expensive homeowners might consider downsizing or going into rented accommodation, possibly increasing the need for storage facilities.

A new focus on sustainability

It’s not all seemingly doom and gloom, the industry has introduced many refreshing and exciting trends to see in 2023, including a focus on sustainability. Self storage companies have always promoted good sustainability practices as low-energy users in comparison to other industries, and in newer builds, solar PV panels have been introduced as well as LED lighting.

Older properties are also switching to more sustainable uses. The industry utilises online tools to limit paper usage, and almost all packaging materials are now recyclable. Many companies are looking towards becoming completely self-sufficient in their energy consumption through solar panels since storage facilities are often in huge warehouses with plenty of roof space to utilise.

A lot of new storage centres are being fitted in existing buildings with second-hand materials, including our new Glossop building. All sheet metal, doors and many other building materials that existed in our old building have been moved over and re-used in the new property.

Customers are doing their bit too, with 75% only visiting once a month or less and 20% fewer than three times a year. 38% travel less than 10 minutes to their self storage store, and only 25% travel more than 20 minutes, lowering carbon footprints.

Look forward with Apex Self Storage

The industry is always transforming, but moving with the times and encouraging positive trends means business continues to thrive. As professional storage solutions for domestic and commercial clients established in 1999, Apex Self Storage is Manchester’s oldest independent storage company. Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can support business owners and domestic clients with self storage units as the future of self storage continues to change.