A New Style of Self Storage Facility is a Success in Auburn, New Hampshire
PHOENIX, Arizona – May 24, 2010 – OpenTech is pleased to announce that Castlerock Self Storage is running an unmanned self storage facility. Castlerock Self Storage is a subsidiary of the Sentry Management Corporation, owned by Mark Shearholdt. Shearholdt is new to the self storage industry with his property management business occupying most of his time. Like many other property management companies, Shearholdt had an opportunity to make an investment in self storage and took it.
Castlerock Self Storage is located in Auburn, New Hampshire and is just under 24,000 square feet with 150 storage units. When Shearholdt was developing the self storage facility, he had numerous challenges to overcome – that’s when he reached out to OpenTech Alliance to learn more about the solutions they provide. “I was both fascinated by the kiosks’ possibilities and a little skeptical about how it would integrate into my first venture of building and owning a self storage facility,” said Shearholdt.
“Initially, one of my biggest challenges during development was finding staff that could be onsite part-time to show and rent units – that was quickly alleviated with OpenTech’s kiosk solution,” said Mark Shearholdt. His initial plan was to hire a part-time employee to perform specific tasks such as showing the units and signing the leases and had budgeted between $10,000 and $12,000 for that cost. After figuring the return on investment that Castlerock would receive with a kiosk, the decision was clear and Shearholdt moved forward with his decision to utilize a kiosk to assist his customers with rentals and payments in lieu of hiring a part-time employee.
Since March of 2007, the kiosk has performed 99 percent of all rentals at Castlerock. Shearholdt was pleasantly surprised to learn that his storage customers were quite adept at using the kiosk without assistance. Castlerock has a variety of customers that utilize the larger storage units, and they love having the convenience a kiosk has to offer. “I was wrong with my need for local leasing staff, we have never hired a part-time manager,” said Shearholdt. “I believe that the kiosk is today’s technology – and the most efficient way to operate a self storage complex – whether it is a full-time leasing arm or an adjunct to a larger site that has an onsite manager.”
Shearholdt was pleased with the OpenTech team’s patience during the decision-making and the installation process. “The technical support team that monitors the kiosk has been outstanding – they are always there for us.” Shearholdt indicated that he has been pleased with the way that OpenTech contacts Castlerock immediately if the kiosk is not operating properly and almost all of the problems are resolved without anyone having to actually go to the facility, but if they do, they know that OpenTech is there to assist. Shearholdt recalls one instance during snowy and freezing weather when an OpenTech support staffer provided valuable assistance to get the printer going again. “The technical support staffer was knowledgeable, patient and a true asset to OpenTech – something you don’t forget on a snowy day when your hands are freezing,” said Shearholdt.
OpenTech Alliance, Inc. is the leading developer of innovative solutions that help self storage business owners extend their business hours and offer increased flexibility and convenience to their customers. These solutions include seven models of INSOMNIAC kiosks ranging from $9,000 to $18,000, the INSOMNIAC Live! call center and the INSOMNIAC Self Storage Network for online storage reservations. OpenTech’s products and services improve customer convenience, reduce operating costs and increase revenues for self-storage facilities. For more information or to see an online demo, please visit www.opentechalliance.com or call (602) 749-9370.
NOTE TO EDITORS: OpenTech Alliance, the OpenTech logo and INSOMNIAC are trademarks of OpenTech Alliance, Inc. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners. INSOMNIAC is protected by U.S. patent number 5,946,660.