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Self Storage Industry Trends

Regularly updated market data and statistics (2021)
Storage
1.5B+ sq. ft. of self storage space in the U.S.
Wall
64M sq. ft. delivered in 2020
Construction
49M sq. ft. expected to be delivered in 2021
Rate
$128 avg. self storage street rate for 10x10 unit
People
1 in 3 Americans use self storage
Personal Computer
600,000+ monthly searches on average

Highlights

  • Self storage has grown to more than 1.5 billion square feet of space in 2021. Over the span of the last 5 years, 137.4 million square feet of storage space was built – that's equivalent to 9.0% of the total inventory.
  • In 2020 alone, almost 64 million rentable square feet were finalized, an area that's comparable to the whole of Central Park and the Grand Central Terminal in New York City combined.
  • A third of Americans planning a change of residence or needing more space at home reported that they use self storage.
  • The average self storage street rate for a 10x10 storage unit is $128/month.

National self storage market trends

Self storage prices

Self storage units come in many sizes, but the most popular size is 10x10, sometimes called a standard self storage unit. Climate-controlled lockers are also available, and these types of units are used for storing items sensitive to dampness, humidity or heat. The average rent price for a standard 10x10 non-climate-controlled unit is $128, while a climate-controlled 10x10 unit typically costs about $146. The national average rent per square foot for self storage space is $1.37.

Non-climate-controlled units
Unit
Size
Avg. Self
Storage Price
Y-o-Y
Change
Rent /
Sq. Ft.
5x5 $56 7.7% $2.26
5x10 $80 9.6% $1.60
10x10 $128 9.4% $1.28
10x15 $165 8.6% $1.10
10x20 $204 10.3% $1.02
10x30 $267 9.9% $0.89
Average
(all sizes)
$145 9.9% $1.43

Average monthly street rates for non-climate-controlled units for August 2021.

Climate-controlled units
Unit
Size
Avg. Self
Storage Price
Y-o-Y
Change
Rent /
Sq. Ft.
5x5 $59 9.3% $2.37
5x10 $90 9.8% $1.81
10x10 $146 10.6% $1.46
10x15 $192 9.1% $1.28
10x20 $251 11.6% $1.25
10x30 $347 12.7% $1.16
Average
(all sizes)
$159 11.2% $1.62

Average monthly street rates for climate-controlled units for August 2021.

Top 10 most expensive cities for self storage

Much like with every real estate asset, location has a strong impact on the cost of renting self storage. New York, NY, is the most expensive city for self storage in the U.S., with a monthly rate of $396, followed by San Rafael, CA ($318), and Santa Barbara, CA ($280).

# City Self Storage
Street Rate
Y-o-Y
Change
1 New York, NY $396 -2.7%
2 San Rafael, CA $318 1.6%
3 Santa Barbara, CA $280 4.1%
4 Honolulu, HI $275 -0.7%
5 San Francisco, CA $273 3.4%
6 Brooklyn, NY $268 1.1%
7 Los Angeles, CA $257 7.5%
8 Santa Cruz, CA $253 22.2%
9 Long Island City, NY $251 8.7%
10 Richmond, CA $234 4.9%

All self storage rates are for non-climate-controlled 10x10 units. The ranking is based on the average street rates of self storage units in 603 U.S. cities for August 2021.

The 10 cheapest cities for self storage

Claremore, OK, offers some of the cheapest storage space in the U.S. Storage units in Claremore, OK, rent for $48 on average, followed by Bardstown, KY, at $50 and Alamogordo, NM, at $56.

# City Self Storage
Street Rate
Y-o-Y
Change
1 Claremore, OK $48 0%
2 Bardstown, KY $50 0%
3 Alamogordo, NM $56 0%
4 West Bend, WI $57 -5%
5 Cabot, AR $59 1.7%
6 Chesterton, IN $60 20%
7 Dalton, GA $61 0%
8 Stillwater, OK $61 1.7%
9 Shawnee, OK $62 1.6%
10 Moore, OK $63 6.8%

All self storage rates are for non-climate-controlled 10x10 units. The ranking is based on the average street rates of self storage units in 603 U.S. cities for August 2021.

Self storage inventory

Existing self storage inventory

U.S. markets, as designated by Yardi Matrix, boast a total inventory of over 1.5 billion square feet of self storage space. New York, NJ-NY, had the largest existing inventory of self storage space, and Boise, ID-OR, had the most self storage square footage per capita in 2020.

Top 10 Markets by Existing Rentable Self Storage Inventory in 2020
# Market Inventory
(sq. ft.)
Y-o-Y
Change
Sq. Ft. /
Capita
1 New York, NJ-NY 68.7M 5.4% 3.47
2 Dallas-Ft Worth, TX 66.8M 3.5% 9.48
3 Los Angeles, CA 65.9M 1.9% 4.73
4 Houston, TX 64.8M 1.6% 9.93
5 Chicago, IL-IN-WI 47.6M 3.3% 5.13
6 Miami, FL 38.7M 4% 6.55
7 Atlanta, GA 37.8M 3.7% 8.16
8 Phoenix, AZ 33.6M 6.4% 7.48
9 Inland Empire, CA 31.7M 0.7% 7.37
10 San Francisco Penin. & East Bay, CA 31.4M 1.6% 5.60

All markets are metropolitan areas as determined by Yardi Matrix.

Top 10 Markets by Rentable Self Storage Inventory per Capita
# Market Sq. Ft. /
Capita
1 Boise, ID-OR 15.77
2 Reno, NV 15.11
3 Spokane, ID-WA 12.56
4 Oklahoma City, OK 12.08
5 Lubbock, TX 11.71
6 Mobile, AL 11.67
7 Charleston (SC), NC-SC 11.34
8 Baton Rouge, LA 11.31
9 Pensacola, FL 11.13
10 Amarillo, TX 10.94

All markets are metropolitan areas as determined by Yardi Matrix.

New self storage development

Self storage has grown considerably in recent times, with some markets seeing more development activity than others. As it turns out, New York, NJ-NY, took the crown for the most self storage construction in 2020 with 3.5M square feet completed, followed by Dallas-Ft Worth, TX, and Phoenix, AZ.

Top 10 Markets for Self Storage Construction in 2020
# Market Completions
(sq. ft.)
1 New York, NJ-NY 3.5M
2 Dallas-Ft Worth, TX 2.2M
3 Phoenix, AZ 2M
4 Chicago, IL-IN-WI 1.5M
5 Seattle, WA 1.5M
6 Miami, FL 1.5M
7 Atlanta, GA 1.4M
8 Washington DC, DC-MD-VA 1.3M
9 Portland, OR-WA 1.3M
10 Minneapolis, MN-WI 1.2M

All markets are metropolitan areas as determined by Yardi Matrix.

Top 10 Biggest Facilities Under Construction
# Property Market Rentable
Sq. Ft.
1 101 East Olive Street, Amite, LA New Orleans, LA 256,500
2 500 North Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA Philadelphia, DE-NJ-PA 251,653
3 2153 Richmond Terrace, Staten Island, NY New York, NJ-NY 228,807
4 2530 South Clovis Avenue, Fresno, CA Central Valley, CA 226,287
5 130-24 South Conduit Avenue, Jamaica, NY New York, NJ-NY 222,823
6 125 Broadway, Menands, NY Albany, NY 213,750
7 20565 Valley Green Drive, Cupertino, CA San Jose, CA 197,753
8 3108 Northern Blvd, Long Island City, NY New York, NJ-NY 190,977
9 339 East Lehigh Avenue, Philadelphia, PA Philadelphia, DE-NJ-PA 188,732
10 6210 Garfield Avenue, Commerce, CA Los Angeles, CA 177,744

How many self storage facilities are there in the U.S.?

We know self storage has become pretty common nowadays, but how many self storage facilities are there? In the U.S. today there are more than 50,000. And how does that compare to the number of retail outlets, restaurants and pharmacies? In fact, there are more storage facilities than all the Subway, KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell outlets and all the Target locations combined.

Stadium

Self storage customer profile

Self storage responds to various storage needs that arise from life changes and events. Whether moving, downsizing or adopting a more flexible lifestyle, people increasingly use self storage. About 1 in 3 Americans now turn to self storage when home space is not enough.

The most popular item put in self storage is furniture, followed by seasonal items, clothing and home appliances.

More millennials than any other generation store clothing in larger numbers, with 36% of them keeping such items in a storage unit, whereas only 13% of Gen Xers and 14% of baby boomers put them in storage units.

About 5% of self storage users rent a unit to keep documents, supplies and tools or other business-related items.

Self storage interest:
How customers search for self storage online

Interest for self storage has been growing over the last decade, as Google Trends data shows. We've looked at the most popular keyword for self storage-related searches on Google, "storage units near me," to see the latest trends in consumer search habits. June, July and August are generally the most popular months for self storage searches.

Data Source:  Google Ads  as of 2020

Naturally, online interest for self storage varies based on location. New York City is the most popular city for self storage searches, with an average monthly search volume of 11,430 searches, followed by San Diego, CA (5,700), and San Francisco, CA (4,480).

High interest for self storage searches in these cities is due to their status as places with very fluid populations. Streams of newcomers continue to arrive, and self storage comes to their rescue, helping them to get settled into their new homes.

City Searches / Month
New York City 11,430
San Diego, CA 5,700
San Francisco, CA 4,480
Chicago, IL 4,480
Denver, CO 4,320
Austin, TX 4,320
Colorado Springs, CO 3,780
Las Vegas, NV 3,620
Tucson, AZ 3,280
Seattle, WA 3,280

Expert insights on the self storage market

The self storage industry is subject to various socio-economic factors and to the market dynamics of demand and supply. Experts weigh in on the state of the industry:

Isaac Hiatt
Isaac Hiatt
Product Specialist - Yardi Matrix
Self Storage

Where does our data come from?

All data related to self storage was compiled by STORAGECafé, an online self storage search portal featuring more than 25,000 listings across the U.S.

The self storage rental statistics on this page were sourced from 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. Yardi Matrix maintains operational profiles for over 28,000 self storage facilities across the U.S.