SpareFoot Storage Finder did a study and recently released their findings for the top15 economic ‘power towns’ in the United States. The criteria for the cities making this list include having the following:
- 50,000 residents or fewer
- A Fortune 500 company based in the city
- High home values
- High home ownership rates
- Low unemployment rates
The cities that made the list of America’s Top 15 Economic Power Towns include:
1. McLean, Virginia (Fortune 500 companies: Freddie Mac, Capital One Financial, SAIC, Booz Allen Hamilton, Exelis, Gannett)
2. Weston, Massachusetts (Fortune 500 company: Biogen Idec)
3. Riverwoods, Illinois (Fortune 500 company: Discover Financial Services)
4. Franklin Lakes, New Jersey (Fortune 500 company: Becton Dickinson)
5. Warren, New Jersey (Fortune 500 company: Chubb)
6. Armonk, New York (Fortune 500 company: IBM)
7. Des Peres, Missouri (Fortune 500 company: Jones Financial)
8. Westport, Connecticut (Fortune 500 company: Terex)
9. Oak Brook, Illinois (Fortune 500 company: McDonald’s)
10. Dublin, Ohio (Fortune 500 company: Cardinal Health)
11. Chesterbrook, Pennsylvania (Fortune 500 company: AmerisourceBergen)
12. Deerfield, Illinois (Fortune 500 companies: Walgreens, Mondelēz International, Baxter International, CF Industries Holdings, United Stationers)
13. Rye, New York (Fortune 500 company: Jarden)
14. Lake Forest, Illinois (Fortune 500 companies: W.W. Grainger, Tenneco)
15. Bloomfield Hills, Michigan (Fortune 500 company: Penske Automotive Group)
A couple of patterns emerged from these findings. One is that both people and businesses benefit from life near a large metropolitan city. Another is that there is easy access to an airport. Management in the Fortune 500 companies like to be able to fly directly to where their businesses are without having to endure layovers.
So what does this information mean to the self storage industry? First, having a Fortune 500 company located in a city indicates that a city’s economic base is stable and growing. Job growth brings people to a community and those people need storage.
Second, these communities would be a golden business opportunity of having a facility there. Middle-class (or higher) populations typically need and use self storage more than lower socioeconomic ones.
Third, taxes are generally lower in these cities. Wendell Cox, part of the think tank Demographia indicated that in smaller towns, voters have more control and city politics are at the mercy (so much) of special interest groups. These smaller cities have much lower costs per capita for public services and that translates to lower taxes. Lower taxes are very appealing to businesses.
If you are looking to build a new facility or to purchase an existing one, check out what is available in these power cities. They may be a good place to grow your portfolio.
“SpareFoot Unveils List of America’s Top 15 Economic Power Towns.” Globe Newswire; 18 February 2014.