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16 Oct 2023

The Future of Locking in Self-Storage: OneLock by Keep It Simple Storage


Mason Shaw

American Storage South & KISS Solutions

The self-storage industry has seen significant growth in recent years, driven by an increasing demand for secure storage solutions. With this growth, the need for efficient management, maintenance, and security in self-storage facilities has become paramount. Traditional lock-and-key systems have been the norm for decades, but they come with inherent challenges such as manual maintenance, lost keys, and the complex process of managing auctions and move-outs. With the ongoing transition to remotely managed portfolios, the industry as a whole was at a stalemate in revolutionizing technology to adjust for the lack of manual labor.

Fortunately, Keep It Simple Storage was thinking ahead when designing NFC (Near Field Communication) locks specifically with the self-storage operation as the blueprint. While NFC locking concepts are not new, molding the capabilities of these smart locks to interact with self-storage property management software has been the final piece of the puzzle that is a remotely managed portfolio.

Capabilities of NFC Locks

NFC locks utilize wireless technology, with no need for batteries or Bluetooth, to allow for secure, contactless access control to storage units. This technology offers several capabilities that are transforming the self-storage industry:

Convenient Access Control: NFC locks enable customers to access their storage units with a simple tap of an NFC-enabled device, such as a smartphone. This eliminates the need for traditional keys, which are easily lost or misplaced, reducing headaches for both customers and facility operators.

Remote Management: Facility operators can remotely grant and revoke access permissions for customers, enhancing security and eliminating the need for on-site staff to distribute or collect physical keys.

Detailed Access Logs: NFC locks record access data, providing a digital trail of who accessed a unit and when. This feature enhances security and accountability, making it easier to track unauthorized access or suspicious activity.

Benefits of NFC Locks for Self-Storage

The adoption of NFC locks in self-storage facilities offers numerous benefits and truly allows operators to lean into utilizing remote management as a means to increase NOI and cut back on high line item expenses:

Reduced Maintenance Costs: Traditional lock-and-key systems require frequent maintenance, as keys wear out, locks become damaged, and combinations are forgotten. NFC locks are electronic and have fewer physical components, reducing maintenance costs significantly.

Streamlined Auctions and Move-Outs: One of the most time-consuming aspects of self-storage facility management is conducting auctions and handling move-outs when customers default on payments. NFC locks simplify this process by allowing operators to remotely disable access for delinquent customers, making unit clearing and auctions and move-outs more efficient. The auction process is also made more efficient through managers who are able to provide digital offline keys to auction winners.

Enhanced Security: NFC locks provide a higher level of security compared to traditional locks. They are resistant to picking and unauthorized key duplication, and access logs help track and prevent unauthorized entry. The ability to put locks on all doors provides an extra layer of precaution against unapproved move-ins and the only way to access the space is by being a current tenant with no balance, which cancels out the need for traditional overlocking due to delinquency.

Improved Customer Experience: Customers appreciate the convenience of NFC locks. They can access their units at any time (as long as they are paid up), improving customer satisfaction and retention rates.

Competitive Advantage: Self-storage facilities that invest in modern technology like NFC locks stand out in a competitive market. The ease of access and enhanced security features can attract more customers and justify higher rental fees.

Environmental Benefits: NFC locks reduce the need for physical keys and the production of replacement keys, contributing to sustainability efforts by reducing waste.

NFC locks will revolutionize the self-storage industry. Their capabilities, including convenient access control, remote management, and detailed access logs, provide numerous benefits to both facility operators and customers. As the self-storage industry continues to evolve, NFC locks are poised to play a pivotal role in its modernization and growth. At Keep It Simple Storage, we are locked in on being the one-stop shop for all operators looking to improve their operations.

Mason Shaw is the Operations Manager for American Storage South, which owns facilities in the surrounding Charlotte area. In addition, she is the Product and Sales Manager for KISS Solutions, a software solutions company she helped co-found with Robert Kapp, Owner of American Storage South. KISS Solutions offers automation and technology platforms to help run the daily operations of self-storage facilities. For more information about KISS Solutions, email team@kisssolutionsusa.com. To reach out to Mason, email her at mason@kisssolutionsusa.com.

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