Storage auction shows are all over television nowadays. If you sift through the fluff, scripts and heavy production, you can find a few pointers.
Bidders are investigators. Because they can’t touch the items in the storage unit, they have to take everything at face value. Even though they only see the face, there’s much more value than you think.
Say you walk up to the open unit and see a bunch of boxes with writing on the sides. Just a bunch of boxes, right?
Are the boxes clean and stacked neatly? If so, the people care about the contents.
Do you see the word “fragile” on the side of any boxes? If so, they care enough about the contents to alert themselves about the contents. Plus, “fragile” means breakable, but also can mean “valuable.”
Are there layers of boxes that go the end of the unit? If so, you’re multiplying the possible score, based on your assessment of the first row.
All of that from looking at a bunch of boxes.
In all phases of the follow-up process you can look past the face value. Here are a few examples.
1. Gathering locating information – Was the participant comfortable with all the questions? If not, they may not be telling you the full story, or even bending the truth.
2. Going by addresses – Is the grass super long? Is there mail overflowing out of the mailbox? They either are a hermit, out of town, or not living there.
3. Searching public records – Do they have a ton of different addresses? You have a highly mobile person on your hands.
None of these ideas are directly stated. You need to look past the face value and look for clues, and ultimately, what they really mean.
(By the way, 90% of the storage units up for auction are full of garbage. Television bends the truth a bit. Shocker!)