Severn River Auctions

Full service auctioneers specializing in storage unit auctions in the Mid Atlantic area


Q. Can you sell my storage unit for me? I am a self storage tenant and want to sell the contents of my unit.

A.  We would love to do that for you, but nearly all self storage operators do not allow a unit that is not in default to be sold at their auction.  On the rare occasions we can sell a private unit, written consent from the District Manager is required.


Q.  Why are no phone numbers for storage facilities on your web site.

A.   We have been asked by several Operators to remove them.  Information about the number of units for sale is posted on the schedule at the right of each location when that information is made available to us.  The number of actual units is almost always less, because of last minute pay offs by tenants.  We try to post updates on Facebook daily, to include cancellations when we know about them.  Please do not call the stores!  


Q.  Can you add me to your mailing list?

A.   Sorry, we do not do a mailing list.  You can like us on Facebook for a daily alertas to where the auctions are for that day.


Q. Can I bring my son or daughter to the auction?

A.  If they are over 18, 'yes'.  Because of the large crowds, most operators no longer allow persons under 18 to attend the auction. 


Q. How long do I have to clean out a units that I purchased?

A.  Most storage operators allow just 24 hours to clean out a unit, typically you have until the end of the next business day.  Most operators only allow you to be on site while the office is open. Usually 9:30 to 6:00 PM on M-F; weekend and holiday hours vary.  If you have any questions, please check with the storage manager.


Q.  Do I need to pre-register before the storage auction?

A.  No.  Registration is held just before the auction.  Any one who participates in the sale must register.  Be sure to bring your drivers license or some other form of picture ID.  Usually, you re-register at each location.


Q.  Can I use my credit or debit cards to pay for the units I purchased?

A.  Almost all sales require the buyer to pay all in cash.  In some states, cash is the only method of payment allowed. Make sure you have enough cash to cover your buys, sales tax and deposit.  Because of a few people who leave without paying, leaving the premises will without paying in full will get you kicked out of future auctions and you will lose your unpaid bin(s).



Q.  I've heard this statement at auctions, "Everything is sold As Is, Where is, with no warranty expressed or implied." Can you tell me what it means?

A.  Simply stated there are no returns at auction.  The auctioneer and the seller do not guarantee any lots.  So buying a TV in a storage bin may not work, but you can't return it. The risk is assumed by the buyer and not the seller.


Q.  What will happen if I can't clean out the storage bin in the time allowed?

A.  Not cleaning out the unit you purchased in the prescribed time is the number one reason buyers get banned from future auctions.  If you can't comply with the time limits, talk to the manager in charge of the location as soon as possible.  You can consider renting it for a month to give you enough time to clear it.


Q.  Do I have to pay sales taxes on my bins?

A.  Most states require you to pay sales tax unless you have valid resale tax certificate and plan to resell what you buy. Check with the state treasurer or comptroller where you live.


Q.  Is there a minimum age to bid?

A. Yes, 18 in most states, also called the age of Majority. Because you must be an adult to enter into contract; a bid by a buyer and an acceptance by the auctioneer is a contract.


Q. Can I take pictures?

ATypically, no.  Most operators have policies against taking pictures.  Many states have laws against taking video and/or pictures without permission.


Q. How much will I have to pay for a storage unit?

A. As much as you are willing to pay. The range of units is $ 1 to $17,500.  Most units sell for under
$ 250.00.


Q.  Will I need to place a deposit if I win a bid on a unit?

A.   Some operators require a refundable clean-out deposit to make sure you come back.  Clean out the unit in the time allowed and your deposit will be refunded.


Q.  When is lunch?

A.   We do not have a scheduled lunch break.  Bring your own lunch if you want to keep up with the tour.  Sometimes, buyers will take a lunch when a location cancels an auction.


Q.  I was at a storage auction the other day and the locks were already cut.  On TV they cut them before the sale.  Why?

A.  A small minority of Storage Operators cut the locks during the sale.  Most operators cut them prior to the sale and place a numbered seal on them.  In some states, a description of the contents must be included in the notification of the impending sale that is mailed to the tenant, which is a legal requirement.  Besides, you would not want to wait 20 minutes to grind off a disc lock only to find an empty unit.


Q.  I checked your site and see that a storage place has 10 units for sale, but when I get there is only 4 left.  What happened?

A.   State laws allow the tenants to pay off the balance due to the Storage units for sale.  Some people wait until the very last moment to pay off their balance due.