Chaos and confusion in self storage shake-up - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Chaos and confusion in self storage shake-up

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Sue Santos Sue Santos
Jenny Rodrigues Jenny Rodrigues

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

WAIKIKI (HawaiiNewsNow) - More than 600 customers' belongings are in limbo as the owner faces possible eviction.

First, customers were told to empty out their storage units as soon as possible. But on Wednesday, just as they were moving their stuff out, they were told - never mind.

Customers have been scrambling since Monday to haul their stuff out from the Waikiki Self Storage after a surprise call - the company could shut down.

"Got the call about noon and I quickly got down here, and when I got down here, I went immediately to the office, which kind of alarmed me because their whole office was gone," said Sue Santos, a customer.

Even the lights were taken.

"These were all lights, lights that went all around the wall," said a staff member.

"There was someone who came in and posted a note on the door," said Jenny Rodrigues, the manager.

The note is an eviction notice, according to the corporate office on the mainland.

Sources say the owner owes back rent.

The general manager would not comment on that.

She did say their landlord raised the rent to an amount they just could not afford.

She says the owner was trying to negotiate it down, but their landlord wouldn't budge.

So over the weekend, corporate instructed staff to clean house.

"We were all shocked," said Rodrigues.

Then on Wednesday, came another call.

"I just got a phone call about two hours ago from my corporate offices in California stating that we will not be closing, that we will be staying open," said a staff member over the phone with a customer.

The general manager says they found another self-storage that's willing to partner with them, to help pay rent.

So, customers no longer have to move their stuff out.

"We're waiting for the final 100% yes, we're not closing but the word is there," said Rodrigues.

The deal still needs the okay from the landlord.

Until then, customers have to go on gut instinct.

"It's kind of hard to figure out, should you trust it?" asked Santos.

Waikiki Self Storage has been around for five years.

It has one more year left in its lease.

 

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