COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho, Oct 13, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) — GarageTown USA began offering franchises of its successful garage “condo” business model last month under the newly formed GarageTown USA Franchise Services LLC (GTFS). For the past several years, GarageTown USA has offered individuals the opportunity to “purchase” personal, over-sized Storage units, commonly referred to as “garage condos.” Currently, there are about 19 GarageTown developments located in six states, including Idaho, Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Texas and Arizona. According to GarageTown Franchise Services Assistant Vice-President Cameron Barclift, “In the short time since receiving the approval to franchise GarageTowns, the phone hasn’t stopped ringing with inquiries from most every major market in the United States.”
The Self Storage Association estimates the self storage industry represents $20 billion in annual revenues. “Garage condo storage is where mini-storage was about 25 to 30 years ago,” notes Mike Ard, of GarageTown’s Colorado operation. “GarageTown is on the leading edge of this next generation of self storage, and now we are providing the opportunity for others to develop in-demand garage condo sites in their neighborhoods.”
GarageTown USA delivers a unique alternative to renting storage space. Instead, investors become owners of secure, enclosed units which average over 1,000 feet of usable space while reaping the same tax benefits as home or property ownership. GarageTown owners often personalize their units with custom cabinetry and flooring. Some even construct mezzanines to maximize the lofty 16′-19′ ceiling space. Owners utilize the garages for collections of classic cars, haulers and trailers; RVs and toys such as Quads and Sand Rails. Still others create personal gyms or their ultimate hobby den. Some units have security gates and most come prewired for phone, cable, Internet and HVAC. Owners are part of an Owners Association where a nominal monthly fee covers services such as building insurance, grounds maintenance, common utilities, security surveillance, and upkeep of a private clubhouse where owners can network and socialize. The overall effect being a garage condo community, where once sufficiently sold out, is self governed and self maintained.
“GarageTown USA has proven to be a successful concept and our company has done the necessary groundwork to deliver a profitable, established business model. Now, franchisees can reap the benefits of our hard work and experience,” says Ard.
Newly enlisted franchisees will attend GarageTown University, an intensive forum where they will learn about site selection, construction, legal procedures and sales and marketing to effectively construct and market their development(s). Investors will benefit from national advertising, financing, branding and PR assistance as well as sales and technical support. GarageTown USA also intends to provide lists of approved vendors, so franchisees can take advantage of the benefits of national purchasing power.
Since its inception, GarageTown USA has received hundreds of inquiries regarding franchising. The franchise arm of the company is now revisiting those inquiries, and preparing to award franchises in areas that are closely in line with its core business model. “We expect to see hundreds of GarageTown USA franchises all over North America, but we want to make sure they’re all done correctly and are successful, so we’re being very selective as to where we go and who joins our team,” adds Barclift.