John Stitz says potential residents are putting their livelihoods into storage, with some people living in cars.
John Stitz says potential residents are putting their livelihoods into storage, with some people living in cars.

Storage trends could show a dark side to the rental surge

While the rental market booms, a local storage manager is worried new storage trends may show a section of the community left in the jaws of homelessness.

John Stitz from Storelocal storage facility in North Rockhampton, said he had noticed a big influx of potential residents putting their livelihoods into storage.

He said 91 per cent of storage units were currently occupied – a larger than normal figure – but more concerningly, the contents were staying for longer than expected.

“I’ve seen people moving here really gung-ho that they’ll get into a house and get settled in a couple of weeks,” he said.

“But what’s happening is people are getting caught out because it’s so hard to get a rental – it’s taking some people three months,” he said.

He described the plight of one woman in particular currently occupying a storage unit.

He said she had been looking for a rental for about two months and had run out of cash to sustain herself.

Mr Stitz said she had been moving in and out of shelters but had since resorted to sleeping in her car.

“I try not to get involved but it’s just that dire for some people,” he said.

He said as the rental market had tightened and prices had crept up, more and more possessions began to build up in storage units.

“It’s not at a stage where I’d be concerned just yet, but it is definitely creeping up,” he said.

“Going forward, I can see we’re going to have some huge issues,” he said.

Mr Stitz said he had also had people occupying storage units who had recently lost their rentals.