Self-storage street rates fell quite steeply this summer in most of the major metros in the US, with one glaring exception – Las Vegas. Not only did self-storage rent not decrease in Las Vegas area, but it actually saw double-digit growth in some cases.

Self-Storage Still a Hot Commodity in Las Vegas

The average national street rate for a 10X10 non-climate controlled (non-CC) storage unit dropped by 3 percent in July 2019, compared to the same month of 2018, according to Yardi Matrix. However, during the same period, street rates for the same type of storage unit in Las Vegas grew by no less than 5%.

Moreover, the rates for smaller units (5X5), both CC and non-CC, increased by 10% year-over-year. This newfound appetite for Las Vegas self-storage is very much connected to the shifting dynamics of the city. Its profile has been changing in recent times, evolving from primarily a tourist destination to a place where people are moving to live long-term. Less Sin City and more family city, so to speak!

It’s worth mentioning that the average metro street rate for a 10X10 unit, now resting at $107, is still below the national average of $116, allowing Las Vegas to remain for now one of the nation’s renter-friendly markets. Many of the cities on the West Coast have average street rates north of $150 per month, with San Francisco rate now standing at a whopping $194 per month.

Who’s Moving to Las Vegas and Why?

With a population of more than 2.2 million, the Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise metro area keeps growing and expanding. The most recent U.S. Census data shows that the metro’s population increased by more than 166,000 people between 2010 and 2017, which is a 13% change. People from all over are moving to Las Vegas, but there’s one specific place that shows an increased preference for Las Vegas and that is Los Angeles County.

Almost 14,200 people from Los Angeles County moved to Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise metro between 2010 and 2017, which is almost 10% of the total new moves in that period. A distant second-in-line, in terms of inbound migration to the Las Vegas metro, is San Diego County, also in California, with approx. 2,800 people. So, why are Californians, and Angelenos in particular, so attracted to the Las Vegas metro?

Lower Home Prices Turn Las Vegas into Favorite Relocation Destination for Angelenos

Housing costs stand out as the most obvious reason for this migration trend. According to Yardi Matrix, a person living in the Las Vegas metro area pays, on average, $1,114 per month as of August 2019, while someone living in the L.A. area pays more than double that amount – the average rent for L.A. apartments in August 2019 was $2,582.

The median sale price of a home in the Las Vegas metro area, including single family houses, condos and townhouses, was $265,000 in April 2019, according to Property Shark. In Los Angeles county, the median sale price of a home during the same month (single family, condo and coop units included) was more than double, at $605,000. It’s no wonder, in these circumstances, that Californians are flocking to Nevada and, particularly, to the Las Vegas metro area.

Las Vegas has always been a hotspot for transplants, attracting people from all over the U.S. and even the rest of the world. 23% of the metro’s population is foreign-born, which is more than 1.5 times the national rate.  Wherever they’re coming from, one thing’s certain: moving to a new place comes hand in hand with the need for self-storage. So, what does the self-storage inventory look like in Las Vegas?

New Projects in the Pipeline, but Fewer than National Average

According to Yardi Matrix, the Las Vegas metro has about 273 self-storage properties, with over 20 million square feet in total inventory. Another 13 properties are in planning stages, potentially bringing an additional 1.2 million square feet of storage space to the market, while four properties with almost 285,000 square feet of space are already under construction.

Although that’s a sizable supply of new self-storage space, Las Vegas is below the national average when it comes to new construction, so there’s still room for expansion. As of August 2019, under-construction and planned facilities in Las Vegas represented 7.1% of the existing inventory, while the national average sits at 9.5%.

With 21,600 new jobs created in the last 12 months alone, Las Vegas is bound to keep its status as one of the country’s most appealing destinations to move to. Strong net migration and a consistent yet below the national average new supply of self-storage are the main factors behind the metro’s growing self-storage rental rates.

This report was compiled by StorageCafe , a self-storage search portal powered by Yardi. The data used in this report was provided by our sister company Yardi Matrix, a business development and asset management tool for brokers, sponsors, banks and equity sources underwriting investments in the multifamily, office, industrial and self-storage sectors.

Maria Gatea is a real estate and lifestyle editor for Yardi with a background in Journalism and Communication. After covering business and finance-related topics as a freelance writer for 15 years, she is now focusing on researching and writing about the real estate industry. You may contact Maria via email.

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