Callbox Storage was formed in July of 2016. The goal behind the new approach was to make storage simple, and to do that, founders Dan Slaven and Kyle Bainter knew they needed to surround themselves with the best possible team. It began with Darryl Olsen, who was part of Target’s logistic and later introduced the founders to another gentleman who did a lot of work for FedEx and UPS. Through that work, the crew spent a year putting the rest of the team together and launched in July.
Callbox’s real value proposition was to create a platform or a service that could eliminate the hassle of moving and storage for an individual by coming to an individual’s house, business, or an existing storage facility, and creating a service that could make life simple.
“So that’s how we began,” Slaven said. “Generally people rent storage from a facility that’s close to where they live from a proximity standpoint, and in more cases than not, it’s done by the female consumer, so we set out to solve that issue and said that if we can provide a service that can come to the customer and eliminate a lot of the hassles of what people deal with in storage and then photo inventory what people have, then that’ll accomplish our goal.”
Usually, Slaven said, about six months after people have something in storage, they forget what they have in storage and might even need to retrieve it after a period of time.
“Probably my favorite part is the ability to retrieve those items by picking up your cell phone and then clicking on those items,” Slaven said. “If you think about a Christmas decorations or your golf clubs, or furniture or whatever items it is that you’re wanting back, we provide that service. So, really, we provide real estate for services and really create an exchange for a client.”
How it works: If folks need storage, they simply pick up the phone or sign up online, and the company has a storage professional reach out, call them, understand what their storage needs are, and ultimately the crew shows up, picks up their stuff, inventories and barcodes it, and ultimately, takes it back to provide a full online dashboard for the customer, so that it’s seamless to the customer and gives them the opportunity to get items back as they need it.
“I think one of the biggest differentiators between our service and, say, pods, is that we do the heavy lifting so, we literally load up the items, give them the inventory, and can bring back items within 48 hours,” Slaven said. “And our service not only picks it up and photo inventories it, but we do free delivery for up to 5 items or boxes per month for free, and we’re righting line with other storage facilities terms of price point, so it’s a service that is not only a white glove, but a service that can apply to really the entire DFW marketplace and has really resonated well with customers.”
“We provide tiny sizes, cubbies in effect for folks who just have a small storage need and want to clear out some space and we provide large opportunities for individuals who want to store full home moves; we’re also servicing commercial clients as well. The statistics will tell you 70% of the users will be residential 30% will be commercial; the average size user we’re dealing with is right around 75-80^2 ft per user, that fits the norm.”
“We provide a service that is for anyone who needs storage from small to large. I think there are lots of inflection points in life when people need storage so if you think about it when someone buys a house, remodels a house, sells a house and there are points in life when you’re creating a baby room for your first child – or mom and dad need to move to a senior housing facility because someone’s the down sizer. If you think about the number of baby-boomers who are moving into that category per year, there’s a big faction there, and then I think there are a number of folks who would not store normally, but with a service like ours, consider doing it.”
“10% of the population stores now, and that’s continuing to grow. I think with our service and the convenience factor that both young and old continue to appreciate then I think that we capture more of the population. I think we enable them to be hands-off, but then we take it a step further; there’s no more going to get a U-Haul, there’s no more getting your friends involved in the process, there’s no more back and forth so, we take whatever painful steps are left for the consumer and take that out of the equation, and we provide the inventory and I think having the knowledge of what you have and taking out the hassle of having to go to storage.”
“It really resonated with folks. I think we decided we could do a job with the right people involved that provided the highest level of service but also created a real value for the consumer, and I think that’s why we got into the business. We’re mobile friendly, so people can log in to their dashboard and see what item they have; they can log in online, they can schedule pickups and deliveries. We provide the free pickup; we provide the photo inventory and we provide the return deliveries on a monthly basis and to have a service that provides things on a monthly basis when the average customer goes on a quarterly basis is really valuable not only for a new storage user but for someone who may have an existing storage facility.”
Kyle Bainter – Co-Founder
“About a year ago my wife and I had our first kid; 3-4 months prior to that we were getting ready for her getting the baby room ready and all that, so coincidentally we were remodeling a room in our house, and we had stuff everywhere. We needed storage – one for the baby room and two for the remodel, so I had a garage full worth of stuff; so I did what anyone else would do, called around to different facilities, got pricing and all of that and realized that the process is very inefficient. I was going to have to go rent a truck, spend my Saturday loading up and have to get friends and family to help me load it, take it to storage and so on; it’s just a difficult process and I’m a young and able guy. Along with that, I said there’s got to be a better way to do that, there’s got to be a better way to do storage; how come nobody is doing a model where instead of me going to a storage unit, the storage unit comes to me? So Dan and I put our heads together, and we came up with Callbox Storage.”
“Our big goal was we need to make this difficult process simple; right now it’s tough. There’s got to be a lot of people in my situation or worse off than me who would need help to make this simple. The way Callbox Storage works is we come to the customer. The customer needs storage, they sign up online or by calling 972-CALLBOX; we show up at the house, our team of trained professionals load the items, take a photo inventory of what’s going to storage.. we then load our truck, take the items to storage for the customer; they go to our secure storage facility controlled by Callbox storage pro’s ADT security, literally laser beams across the perimeter of this thing.”
“What we’ve done to make it unique is the customers then get a photo inventory on their phone, they can login online and pull up items. If they want Xmas items they click on it and we’ll bring it back or camping gear for the weekend getaway so(:49) That’s what we’ve designed and customers really like that about it..Our biggest goal was to make a difficult process simple, so another pain point a lot of people have is they don’t know what size storage unit they need; they think they need a 10×10 or they think they need a 10×15 or whatever, a lot of times all they need is a 5×10, but they’re so worried that they’re not going to have enough room that they get the bigger size. Well a lot of times that’s another $100 a month that people are throwing away for wasted space so the way we work. When we go in to pick the items up, we only charge the customer based on the items they are storing with us. So, if a customer thought they needed a 10×10 but after we loaded the items it’s only a 5×10, then the customer is charged for a 5×10 and that’s also handy if the customer wants to upgrade or downgrade down the road the size of their plan automatically shifts as their storing changes. That’s not possible in the current model.”
“We have plans that start as low as $18 a month – that’s our cubby plan, which is enough to store a few totes of winter clothes or what need be. We go all the way up to larger, like full home stuff for folks who are remodeling for a year or whatever the case may be. The largest one is 400^2 ft; our most popular one is right around a 5×10, it’s $97.50 a month; right in line with traditional storage facilities in the area.”
“But what’s amazing with what we’re doing is that we’re creating efficiencies with the way we’re storing and other things we’re charging the same price, plus we provide free pickup on the front end, we provide free boxes if customers need boxes and we provide free delivery if they customer needs the items back. so basically more service, same price, can’t go wrong.”
“Storage is not going away, right? People need to use storage especially today in DFW; real estate prices are going up, home values are going up, which means the space people can afford is going down so this type of option becomes very valuable to them because we can be that extra closet, we can be that extra garage, so people can live in smaller quarters and have more space.”
“There’s about 2.5-3 Billion ^2 ft of storage across the country, so it’s estimated around 60-70 million in DFW so it’s just a really big market. The timing is right in the on demand World, the power of technology and the power of the phone for their to be a better solution.
“We have tips on our website with things as simple as how to pack things, remember to unplug our freezer, things like that. We show up at home, one hour call ahead; show up, do walk through, begin inventory process.”