Storage Unit Auctions & Social Distancing
Live Auctions & Social Distancing Rules
The coronavirus quarantine in the U.S. may be easing in some areas, but for auction hunters, that means the action is just getting started! While people spent their time at home Marie Kondo-ing their possessions, downsizing, or preparing to move, storage unit facilities across the country were filled to the brink. Now we're expecting an explosion of business in the coming months as facilities begin listing abandoned units for auction.
Along with virtually every other business in our country, storage unit facilities are implementing social distancing rules that must be followed as auctions resume. If you want to get the most out of your upcoming auction attendance, follow these tips and rules for social distancing, directly from some of our facility managers.
#1 - Check The Facility's Website
Many storage unit facilities have COVID-19 updates and guidelines for visiting the property listed right on their website. If they require renters to wear a mask, you can be assured they are going to require auction-goers to wear one as well. Start with the facility's own social distancing guidelines.
#2 - Download The RingCentral App
Some auctions will be conducted as a video conference using the RingCentral app (get it in the App Store or Google Play). You will still be on-site for the auction, just sitting in your car! Once the auction ends, the winners will be instructed to visit the property office in-person to sign the lien paperwork. Just be sure to download and set up the RingCentral app before heading out so you don't miss an auction due to slow connections.
#3 - Bring Your Own Supplies
While facilities will be taking appropriate measures to disinfect between auctions and have sanitizer in the office for registration and paperwork, it's a good idea to bring your own supplies. Assume that masks will be required, so always have one with you. Also bring your own pocket hand sanitizer and pen, as facilities will likely discourage sharing office supplies.
#4 - Plan Ahead
Most facilities will have restrooms, water fountains, and vending machines closed during auctions. Plan ahead and stop for refreshments and a bathroom break before an auction.
#5 - Arrive Early
For in-person auctions, most facilities will only allow one person in the property office at a time for registration. Assume that registration will take longer than normal, arrive early, and be patient with facility staff.
#6 - Know What 6' Looks Like
Social distancing is our new norm. While some facilities may put tape markers on the ground, the nature of in-person auctions makes it impractical as auction-goers move from unit to unit. Know what 6' looks like - about the distance of two arm lengths - and be respectful of other auction-goers' space.
#7 - Bring Your Patience
We're all in this together! Just as other businesses have had to pivot and implement social distancing rules, storage unit facility staff are also having to figure out how to safely hold auctions. Be patient with staff and fellow auction-goers, follow whatever rules the facility has for the auction, and realize that things may not move as smoothly or as quickly as in the past.
#8 - Stay Home If You're Sick
If you have any COVID-like symptoms, including fever, cough, or shortness of breath, STAY HOME. This is a good idea under normal circumstances; now we're all being more aware and proactive in keeping ourselves and others safe. Additionally, keep a detailed list of all auctions you attend to help contact tracers in case you or a fellow auction-goer do test positive at some point.
#9 - Have Fun!
As an auction-goer and reseller, this is the prime time to get back out there, restock your inventory, and resume turning profits - have fun, and happy hunting!
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