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Public Storage / overcharging

1 Los Angeles, CA, United States Review updated:
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Upon investigating the pricing structure of a 10' X 10' rental space I had rented back in 2000, that I was currently paying $308/mo for, I found that Public Storage was leasing the same spaces with their $1 for the first month rental advertised fee, for $160/mo. When I questioned the district manager for the company on lowering m, y fees, he said that I needed to find another space and move to it in order to qualify. When I found a space in the same facility for the same basic size 9'X10' and on the same floor, applied online for it. I was called by the facility to let me know that I was denied the $1 first month fee due to being a prior customer. This after overpaying $140/mo for the last 5 years. My message is for all owners of Public Storage Spaces to re-qualify their investment costs, and determine if moving wouldn't benefit those who have had a space for 3 years or more since the recession. Public Storage, instead of rewarding customers that have supported them through these tough years, have decided to treat them as real estate owners of 30 year fixed rate mortgages. Be wary of your deeds!!

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  • Re
      22nd of Mar, 2010
    -3 Votes

    I work at PS. First of all, the promotional price is for NEW tenants, not existing. Second, pricing is determined by our headquarters, and supply and demand determine the rental rates, as well as region and economy. Also typically once a year all tenants get rent raises. Third, if you wished to move into another unit then you should have done a transfer, all of the amount already paid on an existing unit would carry over prorated to a new unit, and then thereafter you will have a lower monthly rate.

  • Ke
      25th of Mar, 2010
    -1 Votes

    I am a Public Storage customer in central New Jersey. Public Storage had systematically hiked my rent twice a year on average over the six years that I'd been their customer, starting in the early 1990's. During that period of time the cost of living index went up by 17%; Public Storage raised my rent by 51% -- with the result that I was paying $25/month more for my unit than the advertised price (of $73) on their website for an identical unit on the same floor of the same building. Needless to say, it left me feeling, um, like a dupe.
    The local manager of my Public Storage facility was powerless to help: Rent increases are doled out by corporate, so she gave me the phone number for the regional office. I left two courteous messages with the district manager over the course of a month; I spoke to her once and she said she'd look in to it. Besides being snappy and vulgar (muttering obscenities under her breath when the computer was slow), she didn't call back, didn't resolve the issue, and didn't remember me. At long last I got through to the regional manager who offered to reduce the rate to $81, but wouldn't reduce it to $73. Corporate would let her give no more than a 10% reduction. The only way I would have been able to get the advertised price was to move to another unit down the hall. Also, and this is interesting, she said that prices fluctuate on a daily basis.
    Company flacks/apologists, like Redheadedhellion, are probably right to say that Public Storage has the right to set its policies any way it chooses. Public Storage has the right to overcharge existing customers while at the same time offering much lower rates to new customers. Public Storage also has the right to arbitrarily set lower promotional prices while charging existing customers up to 30% more for an identical unit. Public Storage also has the right to change its prices daily. But as an existing customer, the issue for me is: How do I feel about being screwed by Public Storage, and what can I do to stop it? I'd urge all PS tenants to check their bills, verify the advertised rates, and request an adjustment if you are being overcharged. Check your Public Storage bill every year -- check it every time you get a rate increase -- because those increases are cumulative and over the years you'll be paying hundreds more to Public Storage than you should. They are counting on their good customers to either not notice, or not complain. You owe it to yourself to ask Public Storage to lower your rent.
    By the way, if you call their headquarters in Glendale, CA (800-567-0759), they will bounce you back to your regional manager. But it's worth calling and complaining at the highest level possible.

  • An
      7th of Apr, 2010
    +2 Votes

    I too went into my Van Nuys Public Storage facility yesterday to complain about my upcoming (most recent) rate hike. I pretended to be a new customer and asked how much it was to rent a 10 X 10 unit on the second floor. $161. Great, I said, because you're charging ME $215 for the same space. I got the same ### story about "rates being fixed by corporate, " and that I should really complain, because (the front desk girl, who makes 'a little over minimum wage, ' as she told me -- y'know, to justify the "rates are being increased to reflect higher costs" company line they print on your rate increase notice every year -- a lot of customers are upset over this. I asked her to give me the customers' names, or have them contact me, because as a newly minted California attorney, I'd love nothing more than to file a class action suit against PS.

    Wait -- it gets better.

    I went up to my storage unit, which I haven't visited since last August, to grab a few of my stored CDs, and realized that my unit had been burglarized. My unit was packed so full that you couldn't put a fist into it; you can put a helluva lot more than a fist into it now. Every box was pulled out and ransacked. My clothes were just thrown back in, and all of my carefully packed and stored items are now sitting loose. My filing cabinets were rifled through, and God only knows what was taken. The best part? My unit wasn't the only one this happened to. Back in September, as I was told, someone was hitting all the units in my area. Did PS call me to notify me of this problem? They did not. Have they installed any safeguards or additional security measures to protect others? Not according to the rather angry-sounding detective investigating the break-ins. Did PS get upset and rip down all the flyers that a previous victim had put up after her unit was broken into? They did. Will I be suing Public Storage for the loss of my inventory? I sure as ### will.

    Caveat emptor indeed.

  • Gr
      18th of Apr, 2010
    +1 Votes

    As a former employee of Public Storage all I can say is this. MOVE YOUR ITEMS ELSEWHERE!!!
    That $1 move in special is a JOKE..why??? Because after you pay for admin fees, insurance and locks the least you can get in is around $50 and thats WITH the $1 special. They push the insurance because of the kickbacks. If you read the policy you will see that alot of the things that can do damage to your items, water damage, theft, ARE NOT COVERED and they FORCE their employees to SELL THE INSURANCE.
    Next, LOCKS...BRING YOUR OWN!!! Their locks are WAAAAY over priced and now they want you to buy 2 locks talking about its more "SECURE" but think about it...if someone will take the time to cut one lock...its not that much harder to cut 2!
    Next, your items. I've seen it too many times where items are damaged because of the property. Public Storage do not put money back into the property. Water gets under the doors, no gutters on buildings, roof leaks. and they don't care.
    At my property it was a wind storm that damaged 10 out of 13 roofs at my property. This was in Feb 09 and they didn't get repaired until oct 09. Water was getting into all those units. I was required to RENT units when I KNEW they were leaking.


  • Ho
      29th of Apr, 2010
    +1 Votes

    Hey Angry Attorney, good luck suing a company that you signed an agreement saying that they wouldn't be responsible for your items. I highly doubt that they "got upset" and tore the flyers down. I am sure they were laughing as they tore them down and probably even ridiculed their spelling.

  • Li
      5th of Jul, 2010
    +1 Votes

    i went to a san dimas public storage a month ago the reson im writting this is becouse i never place anything in there told them i did not want the storage now there constintly calling me telling me i need to pay them for nothing first of all they lied its not 1.00 doller the first month its more like 23.00 and then after that the bill goes up to something like 180.00 a month i think this is false advertiseing and i would really wish these people would quit calling me

  • An
      11th of Aug, 2010
    0 Votes

    My unit in the front section of Oakbrook Terrace IL had a substantial roof leak. Several gallons of water had been pouring down the back wall, and through the roof, for some time now. It completely saturated and ruined several boxes of our files, and telephone equipment. The boxes were still very wet, full of thousands of insects, and covered in black mold. The day manager seemed very annoyed and un helpful, and preferred argue with me for several minutes, rather than call the district MGR's cell phone, and find some help for me. Her response, "call you're insurance, were not responsible for anything. Finally after many minutes of arguing she called the district manager, and got through right away. (what a waste of time, she could have done this right off the bat) District manager Michelle Williamson seemed equally annoyed she had to be doing her job. She blamed it on heavy rainfall, and again kept repeating that "we're not responsible". She seemed completely unconcerned that large amounts of water had been pouring into a unit that we pay $160 a month for. She said it was normal given the heavy rainfall. I know they are technically not responsible for damaged items, but aren't they responsible for maintaining their roofs? Providing dry storage units, and good customer service? Michelle Williamson did not seem to care because she has no legal responsibility. She only seemed interested in repeating the fine print boiler plate, "we're not responsible. I called the roofers, don't know when it will be fixed". No, I'll get some one out right away and keep you posted, no we'll move your remaining boxes to a unit without a leaky roof, no help at all. Public storage's slogan should be, "Public Storage... We're not responsible... for anything". Stay away from Oakbrook Terrace Public Storage!!!

  • Re
      1st of Oct, 2010
    0 Votes

    I had a unit since early this summer in Alameda, CA, and I went back last weekend (9/26/10) to retrieve something only to find the Public Storage company lock placed on my unit instead of my own. I inquired the office about it, they knew nothing, and they proceeded to open the lock, and I found a number of items missing. They were unable to tell me anything about how that occurred or even to acknowledge that there had been any break-ins.

    Then they proceeded to file an incident report wrongly (for a wrong site, but with a correct manager's information), and the manager never called. I called his direct line again, and absolutely no response. I called the main Public Storage number explaining all of this, and they admitted that "the manager is supposed to contact the renter if the lock was found to be tampered with, or missing, broken, damaged, or open" and yet at the end, I only got the "we'll email the manager and he'll get back to you." Has he gotten back to me? Absolutely not. I am yet to hear any response from anybody.

    I found out later that others have had the same experience - I will paste one of the Yelp reviews:

    I've used this storage site since before it was public storage and owned by shurguard. Ever since the change in ownership service have gone down. There is no consistent property management. I've received notice of rate increases in error. The grounds are not kept up. Recently I received a call that my payment was not received and please come down and verify the lock on my unit as the lock did not have a PS label on it. Apparently, there had been a number of break ins in the month of January 2010 and since the lock did not have a PS sticker on it, I needed to look at it. Except, the lock on my site had two PS stickers on it but it was not my lock.

    My unit apparently had been broken into sometime in the past month. What I wanted to know is why the management did not alert customers that there were break ins occurring so we could check out units? This would ensure a swifter identification of loss, increasing the opportunity for recovery. If my payment had arrived on time they would not have called me. Apparently, the only way customners find out there is a problem is when they arrive at their storage unit and find it does not have their lock on it. Extremely poor attitude by the "Acting District Manager" that finally responded to open the unit by sawing off the lock that had been placed after which I found a significant amount of property missing.

  • In
      8th of Oct, 2010
    0 Votes

    These people do not realize that they are responsible to keep the buildings up. I too found a problem, told the on site manage (which has changed a number of times) and finally had to remove everything for evaluation. Any lawyers who would like to form a class action out there? I would join in.

  • Li
      10th of Oct, 2011
    0 Votes

    Wwwoooowww I thought I was the only pissed off tenant with Public Storage! I went to my unit yesterday 10/9/2011, I was suppose to replace the lock that they had placed on my unit due to non payment. However, when I got to the unit that lock that was cut of wasn't even mines. When I went into my unit I saw that it had been burglarized and the employee that was on scene was shocked. He had no answers and couldn't explain how it happened. When the police arrived I was told that this happened a lot at the Van Nuys location and that they have a Det. that is assigned just to work on this cases. I want an attorney to start a class action law suit!!!

  • Da
      10th of Aug, 2012
    0 Votes

    stop flaming and refer to the law: All state storage laws are online at The Calif law is at The non-judicial way to deny access is listed at 21705. (a) (i.e. 14 day letter giving another 14 days notice = min 28 days). 21713.5. (a) specifies the maximum late fee and that only one may be assessed per month. So if you showed up and your gate access was invalidated prior to this minimum 28 days, if you were denied access or assessed the 2nd late fee ("lien fee") we are investigating and invite your experience. (consumer lawyer, fountain valley, CA).

  • An
      24th of May, 2013
    0 Votes

    My rent just got jacked nearly 28% (not counting the insurance) after only six months, after promises made (on the phone and in person when I moved in) that the rate would be locked in as long as I kept the unit.
    For a storage operator's viewpoint about when to raise rent, see this article (it's "always", by the way):
    archived at
    In the article, it's said that long-time renters of larger units on upper floors tolerate increases. Mine is a large unit on a high floor, and I just moved in. Let's just see how well I "tolerate" 28%. Will advise.

  • An
      24th of May, 2013
    0 Votes

    Me again - I should have mentioned that I got in on a half-price special offer (they offered, I didn't ask), and I scrupulously pay on time. The manager has seen my car (a very nice car, but borrowed) and he's seen how fully packed but nicely organized my space is. I've been visiting my space more frequently lately. I just wonder if all this info somehow was involved with their decision to bump my rent by ~28% in a single 6 month period..

  • St
      5th of Feb, 2014
    +1 Votes

    Why do consumers bother with public storage anyways, their is plenty of mom and pop self storage areas with good customer service, safe and affordable.
    I found one here in Pasadena, CA 91105 they are called Raymond Avenue Self Storage on Raymond between Del mar and California if you are familiar with the area. The manager Carlos is very nice, respectful and professional. I got a unit for 3 months 1/2 off just the other day and they told me up front that the rates never go up. Only two employees work their and they keep the place clean and safe. Call them let them know Mr. Lee sent you for a great discount. Overall look around your area for a self storage facility and stop giving your money to big business like public storage.

  • Ap
      6th of May, 2014
    +1 Votes

    I have well had a storage at public storage in Sacramento ca.. A few days ago I went to get some things out of it my code wouldnt work so I went in and thee manger tells me we have till 3pm to get are things out because we are evicted due to breakin contract rules. How can she do this and just keep my families stuff? She knows my family and I are homeless and everything we have is in there. We tried to get it all out but we couldn't find a uhaul then my sister and my son were in a car accident so now no car. I really can't believe they can do this all my moms things I just lost my mom in October.. If anyone knows what I can do to stop them please let me know... I have tried talking to main manger but she won't return my calls.

  • Do
      9th of Feb, 2016
    0 Votes

    The "$1 move-in special' is just to get the phone to ring.

    My total for the absolutely smallest space they had was $57.35

    The force you to purchase insurance to cover $3, 000 and up even though there are no less than 3 safegaurds to access the facility (one even on each elevator ride!) making this insurance completely frivilous and a rip off.

    Then they add administration fees.

    Buyer beware.

  • 0 Votes
    Public Storage - Fraud and harrassment
    United States

    After calling with complaints about your employee misconduct by joyce harassing with verbal and physical intrusions by placing obstacles and removing assistive devices to restrict accessability that prevent customer to conduct peaceful quiet uninterrupted business. This is ongoing since price was increased from quote heard on speakerphone and among 6 contract violations perpetrated by public storage employee against Gary Rosenthal. The discriminatory practice are excessively impeding my attempts to remove my storage prior to incurring additional fees and afterwards you told me to pay anyways for Jan when I agreed on the contingency that there were workers at a building that i supervise and I believe that will be done by 3 and they weren't so I called you and I have called you several times and left 3 messages to reschedule the appt to pay you and pick up my things as you know joyce at public storage on Venice stands outside smoking her cigarette and quickly goes in side and locks door loudly obviously so I can hear her while she deliberately prevents our agreement and Joyce has breached several contract terms on several occasions that I recorded during the time I fully paid for 2 months in advance. I had not been allowed gate access like everyone else and forced to wait for ridiculously extended time periods for her to tell me she knows I'm there because she watching the camera but Joyce says I have to wait because shes too busy to let me in.

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