If you're trying to choose between renting a safe deposit box at your bank or buying a sturdy safe for your home, you'll need to keep in mind the kinds of things you'll be storing. In some cases, you're much better off stashing your stuff in a home safe than you are in a bank deposit box. Here are five things you should put in your safe rather than a bank safe deposit box.
If you are planning on stashing cash in your safe deposit box, think again. Some banks are prohibiting the storage of cash in the deposit boxes because they don't insure these boxes the same way that they insure their bank accounts. Also, some banks are cracking down on storing cash in the deposit boxes because it could be a sign of 'suspicious activities' such as tax evasion.
If you need to store emergency cash, a safe in your home is a better option. You can access it any time, day or night, and it might possibly be covered under your homeowners insurance policy if you keep a record of the serial numbers of each bill stored in your safe.
You never know when you might need to produce your passport for last minute travel or to use for identification purposes. If you keep it at the bank, you'll have to retrieve it during bank operating hours, which may not be practical in an emergency. Store it in your home safe instead, along with your birth certificates and other identification documents.
Legal documents such as wills, power of attorney, etc.
This is particularly important if you are the only person with access to your bank deposit box. In the event of your death or your hospitalization for a serious illness, your family will need access to a copy of any legal documents such as a living will or final will in order to know how to handle your estate. These are better off at home, so they can be used to protect you and your estate the way you want them to.
If you keep your will in a safe deposit box, it can delay the distribution of your property if no one else has legal access to the box. The bank may seal the box upon notification of the renter's death, and it would then take a court order to retrieve the will.
While there are no laws that prohibit you from keeping firearms in a safe deposit box, it's probably not a good idea if you want your gun available for protection. Some people choose to store valuable antique firearms in safety deposit boxes, but the annual fees for the box rental may add up to more than the cost of a home safe. Check with your insurance company to see which storage option they recommend for your collectible firearm.
Some banks prohibit you from placing any coins in a safety deposit box that don't specifically have a collectible value. This means you may be able to store collectible coins in the bank, but if you have precious metals that aren't for collectible purposes, the bank wants you to deposit them in a deposit account.
It's not a good idea to keep your gold ingots and bars simply lying around the house, but a properly secured safe is a great place to keep your valuable metals stashed out of sight. Be sure to check with your insurance company to see if you'll need additional homeowners insurance to cover the value of the precious metals while they're being stored in your safe.
Don't assume that banks are the best place for those important documents and emergency cash. You may be much better off placing a safe in your home and stashing your items there instead. For information on the right type of safe to use, contact a professional service, such as Suburban Lock.