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The Booming RV and Boat Self Storage Market

July 3, 2024

The Booming RV and Boat Self Storage Market

As the travel landscape continues to evolve, the RV and boat self storage industry is emerging as a significant growth area. With the surge in RV and boat ownership sparked by the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for storage solutions for these large recreational vehicles shows no signs of slowing down. Industry experts predict that over the next 5-10 years, this sector will see substantial expansion. As more people invest in RVs and boats for flexible and safe travel, the need for secure, spacious, and specialized storage facilities will only increase, making this a promising market for both consumers and investors alike.

The Recent Rise of RV and Boat Demand

The COVID-19 pandemic reshaped many aspects of our lives, including how we vacation and spend our leisure time. With traditional travel heavily restricted, many people turned to RVs and boats as alternatives to traditional vacations, leading to a significant boom in the RV and boat market. This surge in ownership has, in turn, driven an increased demand for RV and boat self storage facilities.

The Rise of RV and Boat Ownership

During the pandemic, the desire to maintain social distance while still enjoying the great outdoors led to a remarkable increase in RV and boat sales. People invested their travel budgets into these vehicles, seeking the freedom and flexibility they offer. The RV Industry Association reported record sales, with similar trends observed in the boat market. This boom has created a ripple effect in the storage industry, as new owners need secure places to keep their investments when not in use.

The Challenge of Limited Storage Space

The rapid increase in RV and boat ownership has exposed a significant issue: the low inventory of parking and storage spaces for these large vehicles. Most Homeowners Associations (HOAs) do not permit the storage or parking of RVs and boats within residential communities. This restriction forces owners to seek alternative storage solutions, often leading them to self storage facilities.

What to Look for in an RV and Boat Storage Facility

When evaluating potential land or property for a self storage facility, it's crucial to recognize that RVs and boats require significantly more space than traditional storage units. Here are some key factors to consider when planning your investment:

Covered Parking and Enclosed Spaces

The demand for covered parking or enclosed storage spaces is high among RV and boat owners. These storage options provide protection from the elements, which is crucial for maintaining the condition of these vehicles. Covered and enclosed spaces protect your client's new investment from harsh weather conditions, such as sun exposure, rain, and snow, which can cause significant wear and tear over time. Thus, with the recent rise of demand of these vehicles, the demand to protect these assets and maintain there value has increased. Meet the market demand there.

Adequate Space

RVs and boats are much larger than typical vehicles, so you’ll need a storage facility that can accommodate their size. Ensure the facility offers ample space for maneuvering and parking. Check the dimensions of the storage units or parking spaces to confirm they can comfortably fit these types of vehicles. While traditional self storage requires around 5 acres, RV and boat storage facilities usually need about 10 to 12 acres.

Security Features

Security is a top priority when storing valuable assets like RVs and boats. Invest in robust security measures, including surveillance cameras and gated access. These features can provide peace of mind that your clients' investments are well-protected.

Accessibility

Consider how often your client base will need to access their RV or boat. People often choose a facility that offers convenient access hours, preferably 24/7, so they can retrieve their vehicle whenever they need it. Additionally, ensure the facility is easily accessible from major roads or highways for hassle-free transportation. Consider choosing a location near a suburb or community where these vehicles are popular, as you don't want to create a hassle for people to drive 40 to 50 minutes out to retrieve their vehicles.

Meeting the Demand for Quality Storage

The market for RV and boat storage is evolving to meet the growing demand for high-quality storage solutions. Facility owners are recognizing the need for larger, well-protected spaces to accommodate these vehicles. As a result, we are seeing more facilities offering premium storage options, including climate-controlled units and advanced security features.

For investors, this presents a lucrative opportunity. The combination of high demand and low inventory for RV and boat storage spaces creates a prime market for development. By providing the necessary amenities and focusing on customer needs, storage facility owners can capitalize on this growing trend.

Conclusion

The COVID-19 pandemic has left a lasting impact on the RV and boat markets, leading to increased demand for storage solutions. As more people invest in these vehicles for their travel and leisure needs, the need for secure, spacious, and convenient storage options will continue to rise. As an investor seeking a promising opportunity, the booming RV and boat self storage market is worth paying attention to.

Our latest podcast about this booming industry includes more insider insights from Scott Meyers and Tom Dunkel, CIO of Belrose Storage Group. To understand the financing opportunities and longterm outlook of this rising self storage space, give our episode The Booming Boat and RV Storage Market Episode 180 a listen!