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Ways To Make Money By Renting Extra Storage Space

June 12, 2023

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Take Advantage of Your Extra Storage Space

Do you have an empty garage, barn, parking lot, warehouse, land parcel, or other space? If so, you could be using it to generate some extra cash.  

Renting out extra storage space has become increasingly popular in the past few years, and it’s no wonder why. It’s a great way to get into the storage industry without committing yourself to a traditional self storage facility investment, which can cost millions of dollars to construct or purchase. It’s the simplest way to start a self storage business without money or experience. This woman even made $26,000 renting out her yard space in just a few years. 

So how do you get started? Read on to learn about four different ways to make money renting out your extra space, as well as some general tips to make your storage project a great success. 

1. Rent Out Your Garage 

Renting out your garage is a creative way to generate passive income and take home a little extra revenue each month. Ideally, your garage should be unattached and reserved exclusively for your renters—renting out the same garage where your car is stored could lead to liability issues, noise, or accessibility problems down the line. And if you don’t have an extra garage but still want in on this strategy, you could even rent a garage yourself and then sublease it

You’ll also need to decide how your renters will have access to the garage. Will you give them a key or code to enter the garage? How often and when will your renters be able to access the garage space (weekly, monthly, etc.)? Additionally, is your garage limited to vehicle storage, or are you willing to rent to people looking to store other items as well?  

According to a Neighbor.com estimate, you could potentially earn up to $100-$600 per month for renting out your empty garage. Check out our blog about renting out your garage space for more ideas about how to get started. 

2. Rent Out an Empty Barn or Shed 

A barn or shed can be another opportunity to make extra cash. If you own an empty outbuilding, you can easily make it an attractive storage space for renters by cleaning it out, taking photos with great lighting, and listing the space online.  

Limiting your barn space for vehicle storage is a good place to start. In fact, you can earn between $80 to $140 per month per vehicle using this strategy. For reference, an average vehicle takes up around 200 square feet, and the average barn renter will renew their lease for about 8 months. 

If you don’t want to rent your space solely for vehicles, you could also rent to landscapers, tradespeople, renovators, or small business owners looking to store outdoor machinery like tractors or trailers, workshop equipment, or other materials. Some of these renters might be looking for space not only to store their property, but also to work on projects. You could even rent to passionate outdoorspeople with large sporting equipment like kayaks, paddleboards, boats, skiing or snowboarding equipment, or jet skis. 

3. Rent Out Warehouse Space 

This option is less common since fewer people own warehouses, but if you do own this type of property, renting it out can generate exceptional profits. First, you’ll want to prepare your empty warehouse space by cleaning it out and dividing it up into smaller sections or “units” (think traditional 10×10 or 10×20 sizes).  

When determining how much to rent warehouse space, you’ll want to consider location, size, and other features you may offer. According to Neighbor, the average indoor warehouse space rents anywhere from $200 to $500 per month

4. Rent Out Land or Parking Lot Space 

You don’t even need a building or indoor space to take advantage of the highly lucrative self-storage industry. Poor parking options in large cities and urban areas often means commuters will pay for convenient, guaranteed parking, no matter what it looks like. If you have extra land or parking space, you can rent it out for long- or short-term vehicle parking. This is the lowest maintenance option, as all you’ll need to do is make sure the land looks presentable (clean up any trash, leaves, etc.) and list it online to start generating a positive monthly cash flow.  

Where to Advertise Extra Storage Space 

How should you get the word out about your extra storage space? 

Many self-storage renters are local, so you might be successful simply advertising your space on social media or posting flyers at local businesses and coffee shops. You may even already know someone interested in renting out your storage space. 

However, for a more systematic and sustainable solution, you might want to list your space on sites specifically dedicated to connecting storage space owners with potential renters. Here are a few sites to investigate: 

  • Neighbor – Neighbor is a peer-to-peer (P2P) rental storage platform. It’s kind of like Airbnb for storage space. 
  • StoreAtMyHouse – This is another P2P rental storage site that allows renters to search for available storage space suitable for their needs. It’s even free to post listings. 
  • STOW IT – STOW IT is an online marketplace exclusively for vehicle storage. It allows renters to search for indoor or outdoor parking spaces based on vehicle length and location, including long-term airport parking and semi-truck storage. 
  • Stache – Also advertised as Airbnb for storage, Stache has been featured on popular news sources and donates 10% of their revenue each month to local cancer charities. 

Other Tips and Tricks 

  • Check local and state laws. Garages and other storage spaces aren’t considered dwelling units, but they may still be subject to certain legal regulations. Be sure to read up on the local laws in your city and state to learn about your responsibilities as an owner and what to do if the renter stops payments or abandons their property. 
  • Decide on an appropriate lease length. Use your best judgment to determine what that looks like or get an idea by browsing local listings. A small business owner or a commuter looking for parking space may want a year-long lease, while for other renters, month-to-month contracts might be best. 
  • Write strong lease contracts. Speaking of those contracts, write them carefully. Yes, you definitely need lease contracts for your storage renters. Consider using a template to ensure all the necessary details are included before having them sign on the dotted line. 
  • Enforce your rules. There’s no point in having a contract if you aren’t going to enforce the rules. If a renter uses more space than agreed on, parks incorrectly, or stores any items you’ve prohibited, respond quickly to prevent further trouble. 
  • Advertise locally. Most self-storage renters are local, so try advertising among your neighbors, at local mechanical or electrical companies, or even on Facebook. 
  • Use storage unit software. Innago is a great way to manage your storage space, especially if you’re operating multiple properties, storage spaces, or leases at once. We’re free to use and simple to navigate for both you and your renters. 

Conclusion 

Looking for extra cash this summer? Cleaning out that empty shed or vacant garage you’ve been meaning to do something with might just be your way to achieve it.  

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