woman in yellow dress, Full length side view at handsome bearded man loading cart with cardboard boxes into self storage unit, copy space

@ayoohalle/TikTok SeventyFour/ShutterStock

‘They literally just closed down and threw everyone’s stuff out’: Woman says storage units were auctioned off while she was away on vacation

'why would they not contact the people using their storage tho?'


Jack Alban


Posted on Aug 14, 2023

A woman traveling through Europe for several months learned that all of her belongings back home in the United States were more than likely auctioned off by the storage unit company that housed them.

TikTok user Halle (@ayoohalle) initially noticed something was amiss after seeing that the location of the AirTags she had placed with her storage items was somewhere else. She uploaded a viral clip delineating the unfortunate turn of events and it has garnered over 385,000 views as of Monday.

@ayoohalle Keep your eyes open for all of my belongings on storage wars this season!!! 🤩🤩 #storagewars #howisthislegal #help #firstworldproblems ♬ original sound – ayoohalle

“OK, update,” Halle begins. “I’m in France and I just noticed that the AirTags with all of my things that are in storage and have been in storage for the last nine months has moved so, I tried to call the company and say, ‘Hey, why’d you guys move my stuff?’ But, they did a fun little thing.”

Halle explains how the company was now mysteriously listed as “permanently closed” on Google and that neither the phone number nor email listed worked.

She shares how her belongings, which were now missing, included furniture, clothes, bags, TVs, and more.

There was a lot of speculation in Halle’s comments section, with one person writing that there wasn’t anything that Halle could do at this point.

“Well technically you can’t do anything bc if they rightfully auctioned it off & those people purchased your stuff it’s legally their property now,” they wrote.

Someone else couldn’t believe that the original storage unit company wouldn’t reach out to their clients to let them know that their belongings were going to be auctioned off.

“Why would they not contact the people using their storage tho???” they wrote. “Like what the actual eff I’m so sorry.”

One person said that since she had Airtags on her items, Halle could probably make a claim with her local police department that the belongings in question were hers.

“I’m pretty sure you can contact your local police department if you have AirTags and can prove it’s your items I would look it up,” they advised.

When it comes to storage unit auctions, there are instances when this practice is entirely legal, and that’s if the tenant in question fails to render payment for their units. According to IRE, depending on your state’s laws, businesses have between 30 to 90 days of nonpayment before they are allowed to auction off the contents of your storage unit to reclaim the funds missing from rent.

Initially, it seemed as if Halle may’ve been the victim of some wrongdoing. If Halle was not negligent in payments, she may have been able to pursue them for damages. Lawyers and Settlements penned a lengthy piece on unlawful storage unit sales and auctions, and local Phoenix-based news outlet WMTV chronicled a woman’s “storage unit nightmare” when a public storage business wrongfully credited her payments to another unit’s account. This put her account in arrears, resulting in a slew of her sentimental/personal items being put up for auction, including a family Christmas tree and ornaments she had been using for years.

However, Halle did clarify in another video that she was indeed delinquent in her payments, but stated that the company “had issues with their payment platform back in April.” She then posted screenshots of her emails with the business where she states that she thought she had set up an “auto pay” plan with the company. According to her, they didn’t answer any of her emails or phone calls previously pertaining to the payment issue. So, instead of doggedly pursuing it and making sure that her payments were up to date, her account just went into arrears.

@ayoohalle Replying to @Hailee PSA!!! Read your contracts and make sure you are on auto pay!! 30 days is all it takes #storagewars #storageunitauctions #livelaughlove🥰 ♬ original sound – ayoohalle

“Time got away from me. I thought I’d figure it out later, I did not foresee them one, closing, or two auctioning off my things,” Halle says. “So I actually didn’t assume that my stuff would be sold until I talked to the police department and they told me that they don’t care that I was trying to contact them for a month. All they care about is that me, in the eyes of the law, I was delinquent.”

It seems that she wouldn’t really have a case to legally get her stuff back or make a claim against the company that closed down and auctioned off her belongings.

However, in a follow-up video, Halle says she was able to locate some new contact information providing a glimmer of hope that she’d be able to get her stuff back.

The Daily Dot reached out to Halle via TikTok comment.

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*First Published: Aug 14, 2023, 5:38 pm CDT