Going green is a buzz phrase that we here all too often these days. We expect to hear all about the idea from politicians and activist, but more and more it seems to be batted about in the business world—especially in the self storage industry.
It’s with good reason too. Not only is it a great public relations move to become environmentally conscious, but going green by doing something like installing solar panels can lead to incredible long term savings. With government savings making the cost of installation easier to absorb it almost becomes a question of ‘why not’ rather than why.
Safeguard Self Storage doesn’t need to ask the question anymore. The company is going to be installing solar panels at 25 of its 28 self storage facilities in the New York/New Jersey area at a cost of $6.7 million.
“New York and New Jersey are great first markets for Safeguard Self Storage to invest in solar panel systems because it’s cold in the winter and hot in the summer, electricity costs are high and there are meaningful government incentive programs there to entice us to invest,” said Allan Sweet, Chief Executive Officer.
When all is said and done the facilities in question will get almost all of their power from the solar panels. At current rates that will equate to a savings of around $50,000 a month once they are all installed come October 2014.
“This is a terrific step forward for Safeguard Self Storage, saving well over $50,000 per month (after installation is complete in October 2014) and, in addition, shielding the company from the inevitable rate increases the utilities will pass on in the future,” said Ken Finlay, Senior Vice President of Operations.
Why just 25 of the 28 facilities in the two states? Why not include them all?
One of the facilities already has solar panels installed, the roof on another was deemed not good for installing them, and the third will have them installed later.
Safeguard Self Storage is not alone when it comes to going green and installing solar panels. Many companies have opted to do so in recent years. In San Antonio a self storage facility that goes by the name Stuff Hotel spent $150,000 to expand its use of solar panels.
“We did the first just to see how it worked, and it really made a lot of sense once we saw the money we could save,” said Chris Price, president of the Price Cos., owner/operation of the Stuff Hotel chain.
When they are done the company is expected to save about $6000 a year off of its annual electricity bill.
“Safeguard Self Storage Goes Green.” PR.com; 30 May 2014.
“Self Reliant Solar expands system for storage unit company.” San Antonio Business Journal; 3 April 2014.