Bill would boost New Mexico storage unit auctions

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SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – You’ve probably heard of the show “Storage Wars” or something similar — where unpaid or abandoned storage units get auctioned off. Now, one New Mexico lawmaker wants to boost the state’s storage unit auctions by changing the current statute.

Sen. George Munoz, D-Gallup, says storage unit auctions in our state aren’t garnering enough attention due to the way the law is written about advertising the auctions.

“The industry said, ‘We’re not getting the numbers we need and we need to change the way we advertise,'” Sen. Munoz said.

His bill would change the requirement that storage unit owners notify the public of an auction with a newspaper ad. It would expand the mediums to TV, radio, internet — any method the storage unit owner feels would best get the word out.

Sen. Munoz says not every New Mexico county or city has a newspaper and that papers aren’t as popular as in years past, anyways.

He pointed to shows like “Storage Wars,” and how dozens — if not hundreds — of people turn out to bid on units with mystery items inside.

But in our state, he says, hardly anyone shows up to storage unit auctions because of the current advertising law.

Sen. Munoz says the bill would benefit the public, but more so helps the storage unit owner who gets left with an unpaid bill and a locker full of junk.

The bill would also allow storage unit owners to impose a late fee for every month of unpaid rent.

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