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Kevan Casey
Kevan Casey is an accomplished entrepreneur, investor, and business owner with a longtime passion for poker.
Kevan Casey is an accomplished entrepreneur, investor, and business owner with a longtime passion for poker.

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5 Businesses You Can Run From a Self Storage Unit

While self storage units provide safekeeping for excess belongings in the process of downsizing, they can also give small business owners a much needed office, should their current working environments be less than accommodating. Before investing in an office building that could add thousands of dollars onto your monthly payments, consider looking into a self storage facility of about 200-300 feet. Below are five businesses that may benefit from utilizing such space.


Finding a photo studio in today’s world can be an extremely difficult task for professional photographers, most of which resorting to dedicating entire rooms in their homes to their careers. While this may be convenient for some, it could add clutter and take up precious space. A self storage unit is, in some ways, the ideal setting for a photography studio. With proper backdrops and lighting, the work produced would not be any lower quality than that of a much larger studio. However, it would be best to review the storage facility’s policies beforehand, as some have strict guidelines on what can and cannot be done within the confines of a self storage unit.

Online Sales

Selling products through eBay, Amazon, or any other online sales platform can have a surprisingly high demand for products. Proper packaging materials like boxes, cushioning, address labels, and shipping scales are necessary, and can consume a fair amount of space. Storing the products you intend to sell, along with the amenities needed, in a self storage unit can be extremely convenient. Set up a desk or workplace within this space as well to effectively handle all orders.

Repair Services

Any effective handyman knows that space is crucial when repairing all different kinds of goods and products. Perhaps more importantly is the space needed to store key parts and materials that may be smaller and easy to lose. Storage units can provide the freedom to operate along with room to set up cabinets, drawers, and toolboxes to efficiently store the smaller things. Whether you’re repairing a broken clock or a faulty dining room table, an average size self storage unit can suffice.

Thrift Shop

As mentioned before, reviewing the storage facility’s guidelines and policies before conducting your services from these units is crucial. If permitted, managing retail from a self storage unit can be valuable, and cost-effective. A thrift store, selling a wide range of products, can benefit greatly from such a small space. Set up proper shelving to display your goods, along with a cash register at the front of the unit for a quick, easy way to sell these products.

Auto Mechanic

This may be more of a difficult business to run out of a self storage unit considering the fact that most facilities discourage cars from consistently coming in and out of the property due to the mess this can create. However, much like repair services, if your expertise lies within individual car parts like engines, exhaust systems, batteries, or cables, a self storage unit provides the space needed for completing these tasks, and is a much cheaper option than renting or purchasing an entire garage.
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Self Storage Tips During Winter

For those fortunate enough to live in areas of the country where winter temperatures do not reach freezing levels, consider yourself lucky. In northern areas of the United States, frigid temperatures could spell disaster for those utilizing self storage units, as cold air can sometimes be worsened within the confines of concrete or metal rooms. This can cause freezing damage to your stored items if the unit is not climate controlled.

Considering the fact that many people use self storage units as means to store seasonal items, protecting summer or spring products during the winter is crucial. Things like lawn mowers, bicycles, battery-operated items, or other electronics are all at risk of being damaged by exposure to the cold.

In electronics, fluctuating temperatures can create condensation, causing water damage that typically renders that item useless. For products that use any form of liquid, the freezing of said substance is very likely to expand and crack its surrounding foundation. This is common among most small engine vehicles like lawn mowers or motorcycles, and car batteries.

Keeping your self storage climate controlled is vital during winter months in order to properly protect all of your stored items. If the facility you currently rent a unit from does not already have climate control features installed (like central heating), there are a number of ways you can conserve heat within your unit. Insulation is perhaps the most cost effective way to keep optimal levels of warmth, lining the walls and ceiling with 6-8 inches of fiberglass insulation, though the thickness depends on your unit’s surroundings. Aim to have the indoor temperature anywhere from 55-85 degrees fahrenheit for adequate protection against freezing.

When storing items away for the colder seasons, there are a few things to consider beforehand as well. Be sure to repair any damaged items before storing them away for a long period of time. Anything cracked or awkwardly bent is susceptible to further damage due to the drop in temperature. Not only will this prevent any damage from worsening, but it will also save you the hassle of having to repair said items once the optimal seasons return.

Use cotton or wool covers for goods that may have more trouble staying warm. Vinyl or plastic wraps tend to lock in moisture causing water damage, and with the constant freezing and melting of snow and ice, this time of year could prove worse.

At the end of the day, it is your decision what you choose to store in your self storage unit during winter. However, it is important to consider which items are more at risk of freezing damage than others. Should you decide that most of your summer and spring items must be stowed away, take the proper precautions in guaranteeing their safety throughout the coldest time of year.

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Seven-Card Stud: An Introduction

A classic game in the world of poker, seven-card stud, also known as “down-the-river,” once held the title of one of the world’s most popular poker variants, that is until the rise of Texas Holdem. The difference between the two games is the fact that seven-card stud does not involve a flop, and usually no community cards at all.

Typically involving anywhere from two to eight players, betting is usually played in fixed increments, meaning for $2-$4 limit game, bets are in increments of two in the first two rounds, and increments of four in the following three rounds. Each player is dealt three cards, and before each hand is dealt, players must ante a certain amount. Of the three cards, two are given face down, and one face up, referred to as “third street.” The player with the lowest card exposed begins the game and is known as the “bring in,” and must put the lower increment into the pot.

Each suit is ranked from lowest to highest as clubs, diamonds, hearts, and finally, spades. Each round starts clockwise and continues until each player has placed their bets, leading to the next round “fourth street.” Here, each remaining player receives another card face up. The player to start this round is whoever has the highest value exposed card. They can choose to either check or bet the lower increment established, and play continues clockwise.

Now at what is called “fifth street,” players are dealt another card face up, with the individual with the highest card going first again. Bets made here now must be the larger increment of the previously established values ($4 in a $2-$4 limit game). After yet another round of betting, thus reaching “sixth street,” the same rules are followed.

Finally, players are dealt the seventh card, known as the “river.” This card is dealt face down and known only to the player that receives it. Again, whoever has the highest value exposed card begins the round until reaching full circle. If more than one player remains, what is known as the “showdown” begins. The last player to bet or raise shows his or her cards first.
Remaining hands are shown around the table in a clockwise order, and the player with the best of a five-card poker hand wins the pot.

This is a game where it is crucial to pay attention to the cards of your opponents, as your goal is to achieve the best five-card poker hand possible. For example, if you potentially have a straight flush with a 5, 6, 7, and 8 all of the same suit, but you see three 9’s on the table, your best bet would be to go for a 4 of that suit if it has not already been played.

Like all poker games, learning seven-card stud takes time and patience. Continuing to play will only benefit you in becoming a better player, as you will learn more and more strategies over time.
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Strategies in Texas Holdem

Developing a working poker strategy takes time, and with that, skill. There are several factors that need to be considered in this process, including things like the players themselves, odds, and even table position. In Texas Holdem, all of these apply.

Due to the randomness of hands and opponent behavior, a basic grasp of the odds is crucial. Relying on luck will more than likely yield consistently negative results. One of the easiest strategies in calculating these odds is to take into account the number of unknown cards, and the number of known cards. If you have, say a 7 and an 8 of spades upon the dealing of your first two cards, and your objective is to fill a flush, you’ll want to search for the next three cards in numerical order, all with the same suit. While some may be in the hands of your opponents’, any of them displayed on the board should be considered. Play accordingly, only taking risks if you feel the value of the pot is worth it.

Another important factor in Texas Holdem is your physical position at the table, and the dealer’s. Ideally, you want to be the player that bets closest to last, as you will have the most information, thus being able to make an educated guess as to what will benefit you the most, or potentially damage an opponent’s hand. The dealer always bets last, and the player to his or her right, called the “cutoff,” is in the next best position. However, some view this as the strongest position at the table, as the cutoff has the ability to raise the bet, potentially knocking out the dealer. Those seated in the first few positions of betting are viewed as the weakest, seeing as they have the least amount of information at their expenses.

Keeping your play tight in the early rounds of Texas Holdem is playing safe, but also playing smart. Observe the behavior of your opponents to best gauge their style of play, and look for moments where you can take advantage of these strategies. Those who play too aggressively may produce fairly big bluffs early on. Always vary your style. Starting out conservative, then getting aggressive once you have a feel for your opponents can dismay them into folding.

Other ways of measuring the confidence of your opponents involves reading their tells. These are involuntary tics or movements by players that may give away their hands. Acquiring the skill of reading tells does take time, but is an extremely valuable strategy. Some giveaways from players include repetitive gestures like shifting their seats, touching their faces upon receiving a new hand, rapid eye movement, or a change in voice, hence why many poker players wear sunglasses, hats, or refrain from speaking entirely. Often times, people will enact an opposite strategy, showing tells that directly contradict their hands; another important consideration. While paying attention to these signs can benefit you, it’s vital to remember that your opponents are doing the same to you. Refrain from making any of the movements you yourself are searching for in other players.

Strategies in Texas Holdem are necessary in developing instinct and skill, bettering your chances of winning. Always be able to adapt depending on the environment in which you’re playing, and you will be able to employ an arsenal of poker strategies in any game.
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The Numerous Teachings of Poker

Though gambling may seem like just a hobby to some, games like Blackjack, Texas Hold’em, or even simply betting on sporting events can teach an array of skills that would prove beneficial in the outside world. By calculating odds and variance, Blackjack, for example, can improve one’s mathematical skills, while also teaching the importance of money management. Placing bets on potential outcomes also teaches about odds and probabilities, all of said acquisitions in skill applying heavily to the development of a person.

Approximately 40 million people worldwide play poker on a regular basis, ranging from professionals to amateurs, showing the level of popularity this game of strategy holds. A certain degree of skill is required to be successful, though luck does play a factor in the outcome of one’s final standings, and with experience comes improvement. A person who plays poker regularly can acquire a significant amount of knowledge in fields like statistics, math, and probability. By learning to calculate “pot odds,” the amount of money one could potentially win versus how much he or she would have to risk, players can enhance their decision making skills. An estimation of odds on whether or not to call an opponent’s hand for example, will better your chances in coming away with a profit, and the math required can get quite complex.

It is said that an avid poker player can learn the equivalent one college-level statistics course just from playing, and highly skilled players tend to have a return on investment of over 30 percent. Though, as stated before, luck plays a large role in one’s success during a game of poker, it is obvious that serious skill is required through players that have had enormous fortune in the world of poker.

Strategy is also a very large aspect of poker. The game rewards those who can outthink their opponents and use certain pieces of information as means of improving their chances. As players are forced to bluff more and more throughout a game, they learn to randomize their decisions to avoid being exposed by others. A balance between bluffing too little and bluffing too much is vital when playing with those experienced enough to tell the difference. After playing long enough and gaining a fair amount of experience, depending on the skill of their opponents, most players will be able to recognize when another is making a poor decision and use that to their advantage.

Perhaps one of the greatest benefits that comes with the skills of poker is the ability to properly manage money. If players are to ensure that they have the funds available to consistently play, they must learn how to manage their expenses, and refrain from spending all of their money in one game. This skill directly translates to proper money management in everyday lives, and the importance of having reserve funds readily available for situations that call for such.

Rather than seeing poker and gambling in general as nothing more than a game of luck, those who are against playing should consider the many benefits that come with experience in this field. Highly skilled players can effectively harness this intelligence learned and apply it to several aspects of their lives, benefitting greatly from doing so.

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