If Abandoned Storage Units Could Talk

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: Here at Albuquerque Self Storage, we know storage. Specifically, we know storage units.

It’s what we do! And we pride ourselves on giving you the best storage options available. 

We also pride ourselves on providing answers. From spring cleaning to storage ideas for inside the home, if you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. And if you’re reading this, you’ve got plenty of questions about the world of abandoned storage units.

Let’s ask the hard questions and let these abandoned storage units speak for themselves…

Why are Storage Units Abandoned?

There are many reasons someone might abandon a storage unit. And with hundreds and hundreds of storage units being rented every year, there are plenty of abandoned ones for us to sift through.


The unfortunate truth is many storage units are abandoned simply because their owner can no longer afford to pay for them. In the long run, it’s cheaper for the owner to let the storage unit and everything in it go up for auction

This means that final notices were given, the owner could not pay and didn’t come to clear out their unit, which led to the facility owners putting up the unit’s contents up for bid.

Death or Prolonged Illness

Another unfortunate reason storage units may be abandoned is the death or illness of their owner. If friends and family of the owner don’t know the storage unit exists, it’s likely the bills will not be paid and notices might go by unseen. This again results in the storage unit going up for auction.

The Owner Forgot

Sometimes life throws curveballs. There are many reasons someone might forget they have a storage unit, especially if they haven’t visited it in years. Something as simple as changing an address or credit card might result in payment being cut off and notices of impending auction not making it to the owner.

Big Wins or Small Losses? What Does an Auction Entail?

An auction for a storage unit is similar to any other auction. There are a group of bidders and a prize to bid on.

However, there are a few things to keep in mind.

  • Each state has different laws regarding abandoned storage units and their ultimate auctions.
  • Bidders bid on the entire unit, not individual items.
  • Have cash. You won’t be paying with checks or credit!
  • You’ll be expected to clear out the unit usually within two days

What are the Strangest Things Found at Storage Unit Auctions?

Before you get any wrong ideas, keep in mind there are just as many strange things to find in someone’s home as there are to find in someone’s long-lost storage unit.

After scouring the internet, here are a few of the strangest finds at abandoned storage unit auctions.

Movie Props and Replicas

Believe it or not, there’s a chance you might find an actual prop from a movie! The James Bond submarine car was one of them!

Movie props and even limited edition replicas are often sold at private auctions. While you shouldn’t go buying up every abandoned storage unit in hopes of discovering a DeLorean, you might just get lucky and find anything from a limited edition lightsaber to the One Ring to rule them all! 

Deceased Pets and Family Members

Okay, that might sound creepy, but it’s true! There are a number of documented times of bidders finding urns tucked away and unfortunately forgotten.

Along with urns, bidders have found taxidermied animals. From preserved pets to fully stuffed lions, these animals were likely not what the bidders were hoping for in regards to the big payout.

It has also been reported that bidders have found coffins and even amputated legs. Though, it should be noted this is not a usual find.

Live Animals and… Burglars?

Reportedly, a storage unit in California came fully stocked with 42 pythons. I don’t know about you, but that’s not a bid I’m eager to win…

One particularly interesting case of a storage unit that wasn’t abandoned, involved a burglar attempting to rob the unit and getting locked inside. It was an easy case to close for the local law enforcement!

The Not So Strange Finds

There are plenty of crazy stories of things people have found in storage units. But there are plenty more finds that are a little less crazy, and a little more valuable.

Many toys, gadgets, and gizmos that were so readily found back in the 90s, 80s, 70s, etc., are now considered rare collectables. There’s at least been one case of someone finding thousands of dollars worth of Beanie Babies. In other reports, rare comic books were discovered.

What Does Your Storage Unit Say About You?

You may just have your own valuable, rare collectables hidden away in your own storage unit! Maybe it’s time to go through your storage unit! Who knows what you’ll find?

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