You have to move quick if you want to be in the storage wars. Dean Bitner holds auctions all over Northwest Arkansas at storage facilities. If customers don't pay their storage bill, the ownership auctions off the belongings to the highest bidder.
Dean Bitner, runs the auction until a sale is made.
“We do it through a live auction format, live bidding, it sells to the highest bidder. The winning bidder gets to shuffle through it. It's kind of like a salvage hunt,” said Bitner.
That's because when you buy the contents of the unit, you have no idea what's really in there.
5NEWS was invited for a recent auction at the Store Mart Location in Rogers. People came from all over the region, including some all the way from Mississippi.
If there's dealing to be done, a crowd of bargain hunters will line up to bid. There was an old 280ZX covered up inside one of the units that sold.
The bidders walk around and get a quick chance to peek into each unit up for auction. Then it's all about heart and desire to win that unit.
There were more than 200 people at the event we came out to. Bitner says they were happy about the turnout
“We had 32 units which was a great number of units for a single sale. It draws all kinds of people, all socio-economic groups. It's a very diverse crowd and a lot of fun,” said Bitner.
Think of the storage wars like gambling. You can bet big money that you're going to make money on what's inside, or you can pour out a lot of your hard earned cash on somebody's trash.
That's what makes it so exciting. It’s hit or miss, win or lose, on every single unit.
“There is a spirit of competition and there are people who bid against each other. Very much like what you see on the television show programs. We don't have the arguing, the fussing and the fighting. But there is a level of competition and again it's just a treasure hunt,” said Bitner.
You can Google for information about local, regional, and nationwide auctions at storage units if you are brave enough for the battle.
Only the strong, with big pockets survive. They don't call it storage wars for nothing.