Smells, Sneaks and Snakes: Auctioneers Reveal What Puts the Brakes on the Bidding

By Jay MacDonald   February 25, 2015

stop sign

Thanks to the “Storage Wars” craze, most of America now knows that if you don’t pay your self-storage rent, the facility operator can auction off the contents of your unit to the highest bidder.

That’s what starts most storage auctions. But did you ever wonder what might stop one? → Keep Reading

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Storage Auctioneers Spill Secrets About Self-Storage

By Allie Johnson   February 23, 2015

Walt Cade

In their line of work, storage auctioneers know self-storage facilities inside and out—almost on par with the owners and operators of those facilities.

Yet for all that auctioneers know about self-storage, how much do we know about their storage habits and beliefs? Not much.

We asked four storage auctioneers to give us the inside scoop on self-storage, including which of their own belongings they may or may not keep in storage units. Here’s what they told us. → Keep Reading

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Are You Making These 6 Mistakes at Storage Auctions?

By Rachel Hartman   February 2, 2015

homer simpson doh

The idea of winning treasures at storage auctions is tantalizing.

While participating in a storage auction is not necessarily complicated, there is much to be learned about the process to stand a chance of scoring those treasures, especially when it comes to bidding.

“This is a very labor-intensive business with a decent amount of risk,” said auctioneer Richard Kruse, owner of Gryphon Auction Group in Columbus, OH. → Keep Reading

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America’s Top 20 Cities for Storage Auctions

By Nick DiUlio   January 19, 2015

Storage auction

Thanks mostly to reality TV shows like “Storage Wars” and “Storage Hunters,” millions of Americans have been swarming auctions at self-storage facilities in hopes of unearthing treasures. But data compiled by SpareFoot shows that storage auctions are more popular in certain parts of the U.S. than others.

To come up with our list of America’s Top 20 Cities for Storage Auctions, we matched U.S. Census Bureau population data with data from regarding the number of storage auctions that were advertised in more than 800 U.S. cities in 2013. We then ranked the cities—with populations of at least 50,000—by the number of storage auctions per capita. → Keep Reading

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Storage Auction Yields Potentially Valuable Painting—and a Modern Mystery

By Alexander Harris   December 17, 2014

Little Rose

In the spring of 2014, shop owner Tim Beavin bought the contents of a storage unit at an auction in Essex Junction, VT, and made a stunning discovery.

On its own, the unit already was a good buy at $660. It contained carefully packed moving boxes chock-full of artwork and antiques that easily could be sold on eBay or at his vintage shop, Old School Cool, in Montpelier, VT. One item in particular, however, set Beavin’s heart racing.

It was a framed oil painting of a young woman titled “Little Rose.” A plaque on the frame bore the name of James McNeill Whistler, the famed 19th century portrait painter. → Keep Reading

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8 Common Myths About Storage Auctions

By Rachel Hartman   December 15, 2014

storage auction

If you go to a storage auction in your area, will the bidding resemble the storage battles you see on TV?

Generally speaking, it won’t, Arizona auctioneer Casey Jones said. Like most things, the “reality” on the screen doesn’t match what takes place at real-life storage auctions. → Keep Reading

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From Cars to Cash: Every Once in a While, Storage Auction Bidders Strike Gold

By Nick DiUlio   December 9, 2014


Since first entering the storage auction business in 2002, Arizona auctioneer Casey Jones has seen some remarkable things left inside abandoned storage units. But there’s one particular story that always rises to the top.

About five years ago, Jones was getting ready to preside over an auction when a homeless husband and wife drove into the parking lot in an old station wagon.

“They were looking for a couch to bring back to some camp they had set up in the desert,” Jones said. “I told them they were more than welcome to participate.” → Keep Reading

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Can You Do Your Holiday Shopping at Storage Auctions?

By Allie Johnson   November 17, 2014

holiday gifts

You could battle crowds at the mall or just shop online. But how about heading to a storage auction to find cool holiday gifts at bargain prices?

That shopping tactic really is practical only for regular buyers at storage auctions, said Rich Schur, chief operating officer at The Storage Auction Kings, which handles auctions at self-storage facilities in four states.

“As you’re going through units in your normal course of buying, you’ll find items that would make good gifts,” Schur said. Those items could include antiques, coins, collectibles, jewelry, tools and watches. → Keep Reading

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SpareFoot’s Ultimate Guide to Storage Auctions

By Nick DiUlio   October 30, 2014

storage auction

Thanks to shows like “Storage Wars” and “Storage Hunters,” millions of Americans have been introduced to self-storage auctions, yet very few truly know what they entail. So if you’re thinking of getting into the storage auction game, turn off the TV and follow this expert advice on what to expect. → Keep Reading

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After Health Scare, Dan and Laura Dotson of ‘Storage Wars’ Tout Importance of CPR

By Allie Johnson   October 3, 2014

Dan and Laura Dotson

When “Storage Wars” star Dan Dotson collapsed at home from a double brain aneurysm on a Monday morning in June, cameras from the A&E reality show missed his brush with death.

But later, Dotson’s wife and co-star, Laura Dotson, invited a camera crew to the hospital to do some filming for an episode titled “The Daneurysm,” which premiered Sept. 8.

In that episode, Laura told a doctor she performed CPR on her husband after he fell. She learned the lifesaving skill as a Girl Scout in the sixth grade, she told The SpareFoot Blog. Now, the Dotsons have become CPR advocates.

“I owe her my life,” Dan Dotson told The SpareFoot Blog. → Keep Reading

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