how much for kayak/canoe storage?

we recently purchased a large wooden building (warehouse style)and we thought about adding storage for kayaks mostly and maybe some canoes.(for the apartment dwellers etc…) just wondered if any one had any thoughts on a system (handmade and not to costly)that would secure these items,allow access w/out compromising the safety of other renters boats.and how much should we charge?. i don’t know of anyone around us that is doing this for small watercraft, only large boats etc… would you just provide the racks and they have to lock them etc…? we have a lease packet already drawn up by our attorney for tenants. any thoughts, ideas or help would be appreciated!

Northern New Hampshire
You are kidding right? Wouldn’t think there would be a great need there. Plus paddlers are known to be on the cheap. Free would probably be overpriced to get more than a handful.

sounds crazy , i know…
but there a lot of apartment dwellers that want easy access. people can be really lazy sometimes and if they have to go far to get there stuff, then they don’t go, have someone in my kayak group say this just recently. hear it all the time. me, well i am obsessed so that doesn’t count. just a thought!

Need is it!
Like everything else, supply and demand determines price.

Are there a lot of apartment dwelling paddler in your area? Are you right on the water so they can launch from?

As a point of reference. In an area with large number of apartment dweller (Yonkers, NY), I pay a princely sum of $200/year for water front storage of my boat, and the locker for PFD etc. It has a bath room, water to wash the boat and a cart to roll the boat down to the launch (100 yard away).

Some thoughts…

– Last Updated: Nov-25-09 12:00 PM EST –

Some thoughts that came to my mind:

1. It's your building. You make money from storage fees. If the building is not secure, and access is not controlled; how long before someone's boat gets damaged, or stolen?

2. If someone's boat is damaged, or stolen; who foots the bill? Sounds like that might be YOU.
Might talk to your attorney about that & CYA.


we went to an attorney
do draw up the lease for tenants… you are reliable for your own stuff…just as i am with the building that i lease for my business. my landlord only covers the the building, no it’s to me to secure the building( stuff) this thing may never happen, but was curious.

we don’t have all that…but are right in the center of town…a river is right across the street, but that would for ww. those boats can easily fit in an it would be for bigger stuff. but that gives me an idea anyhoo! thanks

I need storage
I am lucky to have a great friend who owns a bicycle shop that has a storage building about the size of 12 car garage, about 20 feet clear heigth. He stores boxed bikes from the mfgrs there, and has enough spare room for me to store two canoes and a kayak. He won’t accept money, but over the years I have probably spent $5K at his shop.

Now there is a downside. I did not ask for access 24/7/365, nor wopuld I want it considering the immense value of his inventory. That means access only when the shop is open. I deal with it.

I have flirted with the idea of renting a storage shed, but I would be looking at $300/year for secure storage & access.

You might price the cost of storage in your area and charge accordingly.


great tip
thanks for the input.

Rental storage:
A few years ago, we had several club members bemoaning the fact that they had no place to store kayaks. Therefore they never bought a boat. At the time I suggested getting together and renting a mini warehouse and splitting the cost. A simple 2x4 rack could easily store 10-12 kayaks, so each share of rent would have been all of 10-15 bucks a month.Never happened. I have to agree with the responder who said, “even free would be too much.”

As an apartment dweller
In NYC, I would be ecstatic if I could store a long boat convenient to the water for as little as $200-$300 per year.

In my hood
Storage spaces are usually listed at about $60/month for inside storage, $30 a month for outside storage. These are from kayak shops on interesting water, like Monterey and Half Moon Bay and Santa Cruz.

At the Monterey location, they are a short sand walk to the bay, at the easiest launch spot possible. They offer bathrooms and a wash station for anyone.

The boats are stored on wooden racks. The outside storage is within a fenced area, same as where they store the rental boats.

Since you aren’t in competition with them, I imagine they would discuss how they operate their storage if you contact Monterey Bay Kayaks or Half Moon Bay Kayaks, or the Kayak Connection.

In stonington Maine . . .
There is a fenced off indoor parking space right next to the boat ramp where a handful of paddlers have created their own secure and convenient boat storage. They’ve built a simple 2x4 rack, and there are about 15 boats stored in there. It’s literally a 50 foot carry to the water. Very nice setup!

Prime target for thieves!
Once you fill the shed with 10-20 kayaks, it’ll be prime target for thieves.

So, whether you’re liable for the lost of not, you’ll need to whatever neccessary to discourage crime. Or your clients might just run.

(the water front storage in NYC did have boats stolen from it)

In any case, as a boat owner, I wouldn’t consider non-water front storage. It’s a pain in the butt to have to make detour out of way just to pick up the boat. I’m most motivated to launch from the storage but very reluctant to deal with the hassle of loading up the boat to launch elsewhere. So had the storage isn’t at a launch, I would never use it.

If I had a large warehouse…
…near water and wanted to do something for fellow paddlers, I might be thinking a bit more ambitiously than just simple storage (but this would also include more ambitious–and perhaps more expensive–safety/insurance concerns)…

How about a combined use space? Some boat storage, and then some space(s) put aside for people to use (rent?) for boat building and paddle carving? Perhaps even provide space for an expert builder to offer building/carving workshops?

In any event, a more “combined usage” like this could make your building a very lively and much appreciated space for paddlers. Just a thought.


more SF Bay Area info
Sea Trek in Sausalito rents spots for kayaks. I’ve heard both $50 and $75 per month per boat.

There is a place in Oakland on the estuary that also has similar prices.

These are places on the water, so a person can take their boat from there for a paddle. Usually has access to a hose to wash boats off afterward. No showers or anything like that.

This is in crowded, and expensive, San Francisco Bay Area.

I am paying some $170 a month for a 5’ x 20’ storage area. Half the space is taken up by my 3 boats, the other half with assorted junk that I should get rid of. Not on the water.

SF Bay, NYC, northern NH…
"This is in crowded, and expensive, San Francisco Bay Area. "

And an area that has a large high-income population living in apartments.

In most other part of the country, people who live in apartments tend to have relatively low income. They’re not the type that would pay $500-1000/year to store they boat! (if they even own a boat that cost that much to begin with…)

Even in midtown New York City, a water front storage only cost $700/year. And that comes with hose, shower and lockers. And the location, like those of SF bay, are launch spot to PRIME paddling locations that people don’t ever get tired of paddling frequently.

I seriously doubt it will bring in much in the boonies of northern New Hampshire that’s not on the water…

Locking kayaks/canoes is tricky and preventing damage by vandals is worse. It’s harder inside where they don’t have people watching them. I’d want at least a security camera or several.

It wouldn’t be that difficult to provide paddlecraft size lockers, long and skinny, that the owner of the boat only had access to his boat via a key. Can be a fairly small door, just need room to slide the boat in and out.

Bill H.

the drawback with MBK’s setup
is that you can only get your boat during normal business hours. Want to return your boat at 7PM? You’re out of luck. :frowning:

Northeasterner + paddler + GP carver
I can’t imagine a cheaper demographic

maybe throw in ‘Dutch’?