With the popularity of the “Storage Wars” franchise growing year after year (there are now three spinoff shows of the California-based original, located in Texas, New York City and Canada), more and more people are taking a chance at finding their own big score behind a storage unit doors. Recently we saw that trend even extend to the stars of another reality-based show.
“Comic Book Men” is a show based around the day to day goings on of Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash, a comic book store owned by famed filmmaker Kevin Smith (director of “Clerks”, “Chasing Amy” and “Dogma”) and named for two characters appearing in several of his films. In the recently aired episode “Walt’s Big Gamble”, the stars of the show decided to try their hand at buying abandoned storage units. Inspired by a marathon viewing of one of “those storage unit shows”, comic book store manager Walt Flanagan and his staff made their way to a local storage auction with the hope of hitting it big with a find a comic books and/or collectibles.
Imagine their delight when one of the units being auctioned that day did appear to hold several long boxes, universally recognized by comic book enthusiasts as the storage container of choice for their collections.
As the bidding process began Walt (and his staff members Ming Chen and Mike Zapcic) made it clear they had a bidding plan and budget in place. Those are very valuable lessons to be learned by any storage auction novice. However, the gang also taught everyone what not to do as Walt allowed his enthusiasm and emotions to get him away from his plan and go past his budget. When the bidding was over he had won the unit, but rather than sticking with his maximum limit of $1,000, he paid $1,500.
This disappointment of paying more than he had intended was compounded when it was discovered the long boxes weren’t holding comic books, and instead contained a full encyclopedia.
So Walt, Ming and Mike went home disappointed but they learned and taught viewers the most basic lessons of storage unit auctions. Have a plan in place before you even reach the storage facility. Know your financial limits and stay within them, even if that means allowing a unit to be purchased by someone else. And perhaps most importantly, leave all emotions behind, because an emotional bidder is all too often an irrational bidder.