My brother RC and I went to our first auction in Haverhill, a working class city north of Boston and about an hour away from my house. The storage unit place was in an old mill 4 stories high. There were 4 units up for auction. I was quite surprised to see about 40 people waiting for this auction, with only one other woman in the crowd.
The first unit was fairly narrow, maybe 6 feet wide, and you couldn't see anything except for the back of an appliance (washer or dryer), the side of a large piece of furniture like a hutch and a mattress obscured everything behind it. This was not of interest to us because we didn't want to deal with a mattress or an appliance, but I was interested to see it sell for $200. The next one was mostly junk -- it looked like the renter had taken out what was of value and left the trash behind. It actually sold for $50. The next 2 units looked fairly decent with the last one looking best. We got in on the bidding for the last but the sale amount went over our max.
We were disappointed that we didn't get anything on this first auction, but we did learn a lot. It's true, you really can't see much and the value determination is mostly by feel. What conclusions can you draw about the overall contents based on what little you can see? Another thing we found out is that many units are just junk.