What do you want to do when you retire? Sail around the world? Move closer to your children and grandchildren? Buy your dream home? With ever-increasing longevity, you might need some passive income to fuel your dreams through 30+ years of retirement. Enter self storage investing, and the smart planning of Shirley and Mark Vaughan with their new business, Secure Pack Storage.
“It was something we’ve thought about for a long time, and the time was finally right. We’ll be able to run the facility through retirement. It’s perfect for us. We can run our business and manage our retirement on our own terms,” said Shirley.
Prior to starting the business, Shirley spent 20 years working in the hotel industry, and Mark continues to work in industrial supplies sales while Shirley runs the day to day operations of the business. The Vaughans built their self storage dream from the ground up, purchasing five acres of serene woodland property overlooking the Smoky Mountains and close to Tellico Reservoir in East Tennessee.
The brand new Lenoir City, Tennessee facility offers close to 70,000 sq ft of rentable space with 300 interior units and 48 large covered parking spaces, ideal for RVs, boats, campers, or large vehicles, as well as top class amenities like mobile gate access from PTI Security, online bill pay, a conference room with free coffee and wifi, and packing supplies. With their location close to popular camping, hiking, and outdoor recreational areas, it’s no surprise that RV storage is one of their biggest sellers.
“We love hiking, and since we have such a great view of the Smokies, we went with a Smoky Mountain theme at the facility, complete with a mural of one of our favorite Appalachian hiking trails, Max Patch. Plus, the location is perfect for it. You can get to the lakes in East Tennessee by going off one side of the interstate, and you can get to the lakes in West Tennessee by going to the other. We’re up on a hill and surrounded by major waterways. The location is just ideal for recreational vehicle storage,” said Shirley.
In addition to their great location, Shirley spends a lot of time getting the details right, making sure every corner of the sprawling property is spotless, with large potted plants at the entry, swept driveways, waxed floors, squeaky clean units, and piped-in music throughout the climate-controlled buildings.
The development of the facility and the Secure Pack Storage brand was over three years in the making. The Vaughans did exhaustive research on vendors, building materials, locks, security systems, and more for years before choosing the site and beginning construction on the facility. Their thorough research is what led them to storEDGE facility management software and marketing websites early on.
“Honestly, I think we looked at every software program out there, because we knew right away that was going to be important,” said Shirley. “Management software was probably one of the very first things we started looking at. Now, we are so happy with the support that storEDGE offers. The support team is truly great, and that was really important to us, since we’re new to the business and new to the industry. If I need help, I didn’t want to have to submit a ticket or wait for someone to call me back. I wanted to be able to pick up the phone and talk to a live human being, and I get that with storEDGE every time.”
So what’s next for Shirley and Mark? The duo has started training a part-time manager to help Shirley manage the busy operations at the facility, and they’re looking forward to years of enjoying local hiking and recreation in the Smoky Mountains while running their business.
“We’re getting our name out there, and we’ve got a new group of realtors coming in to utilize our conference room in the next few weeks,” said Shirley. “But for now, I’m just enjoying getting to know all of our tenants. I have an awesome view of the mountains from the office, and the area is just beautiful. This business is a dream come true for us.”
Thank you Secure Pack Storage! At storEDGE, we are proud to work with clients who excel at what they do, care about their customers, and lead the industry in technology. If you liked this article, you may also like: Client Spotlight: Extra Self Storage, Client Spotlight: Interstate Self Storage & Innovation Self Storage, and Client Spotlight: The Self Storage Vault.