DIY Security Skills: What to Keep In a Home Safe

what to keep in a home safe

Last Updated on July 27, 2021

So, what to keep in a home safe? People automatically think about throwing their precious jewels into a safe, like it’s some sort of Hollywood movie, but there’s more to it than that.

Instead, a wide range of personal and family items could be stored there, but you also need to answer the question of how do you store them? With some different safe options out there, it means we have many key points to look through.

Choosing Your Safe

At this point, we are going to say that you have not yet bought your home safe, so we need to look at how you go about even selecting it in the first place.

This is easier than you would expect. There are various options out there, including a safety deposit box for smaller spaces up to a larger safe that will hold more items like firearms and other large items.

Think carefully about what you expect to be keeping in your safe. How bulky are the items? How many items are you expecting to have to keep in there?

Being aware of the likely contents will allow you to select the best safe for your needs. Then, you won’t have to stress about having all this wasted space or not having enough space for all of your precious items.

Size Is Important

Just quickly going back to the size aspect for a second, but this is something you cannot overlook. It’s even best to think about what you want to protect, to determine the safe then. Think about where that safe can be located as well.

Also, plan ahead to a certain extent. You don’t want to only think that you will keep documents in your safe, only to inherit something of a larger size then, or make a purchase that needs a safe space.

Why Bother With a Safe?

But also, some people wonder as to why you should even bother with a safe. Well, there are many important reasons as to why this is a good idea.

First, you never know when a home fire could strike. Fireproof safes will protect whatever is inside from the flames, and considering most people will include documents inside, such as home insurance, that’s the kind of thing you want to keep in a safe.

Also, people tend to think that being a safe place will often be the same place that other people will think of. That means that if someone gains access to your home, they will already know where to look. If you left precious items in an obvious place, then the chances are that your insurance policy won’t cover you.

Overall, this is all about placing key items in a safe and secure location that will be protected no matter what goes on. After all, something such as a fire can cause a lot of damage, but if your valuables are in that fireproof home safe, then they will be completely safe.

What to Put In Your Home Safe

So, let’s move on to checking out the various items you can keep in your safe.

There are no laws as to what you can and cannot put in a safe. It is entirely up to you. After all, what is precious to one individual will be pointless and worthless to someone else. You need to decide according to the space you have free and what is the most valuable item to you. Keep in mind and it doesn’t have to come with a cash value attached to it either.

Emergency Cash

One of the main things people will keep in their home safe is an emergency cash supply. It makes a whole lot of sense. Clearly, keeping most of the cash you have in your bank account makes sense, but having access to some money at home is also a good idea.

Some people keep this sort of thing in a drawer or a tin. That’s too obvious, so adding it to a safe is the better option. Now, that’s not to say that you end up like some Hollywood movie bad guy with a safe full of cash. Keep that to the movies, but having some spare cash that is easy to access is certainly not a bad idea.

Cards

The storing of credit cards or anything else that is plastic and important in a safe is another good idea. Even adding memory cards that contain precious memories in a safe could be a worthwhile thing. Once again, this is a better option than using your sock drawer.

But here’s an important tip. If you use your bank card regularly, then don’t keep it in your safe. That sort of thing then becomes annoying. However, if you are going away somewhere and, for whatever reason, don’t need it, then, by all means, add it to your safe. Just do yourself a favour and don’t add in the PIN beside it.

Your Rings and Other Expensive Jewellery

This one is obvious, but how many people keep precious rings and other jewels sitting on their dressing table or in a trinket box? Not only does that mean you cannot protect them, but they are easy to lose. If someone did gain access to your home, then where are they going to look?

Putting these valuable items in a fire-resistant safe is the least you can do. They may not be the Crown Jewels, but those items are precious in their way to you.

However, another little tip; Don’t put in those rings you wear regularly. Only do this if leaving your home for some time.

Key Electronics

If you are going away on holiday, then placing key electronics such as phones, laptops, and tablets in a fireproof safe also makes sense. Even when you are away from home, the possibility of a house fire is always going to exist, and then there’s the burglar to think about as well.

Placing electronics in your safe and then making digital copies of important documents and storing them in the cloud makes a lot of sense.

It will also extend to cameras. However, as we now tend to keep using our mobile phone as a camera, this is slightly obsolete. In saying that, if you do have a digital camera, then keeping it in your safe along with the memory sticks or cards is a great idea.

Family Heirlooms

Storing valuables, such as those previous heirlooms, in your fire safe is also common. Of course, what you can store in there depends on the size of your safe. But keeping those precious family memories and heirlooms safe from the potential ravages of fire will prevent you from having to deal with the heartache you would then feel if these valuables were damaged.

Remember, an heirloom doesn’t have to mean an antique. It’s something that is sentimental to you and something that you want to try to protect as best you can.

Your Passport

One of the most common items to place in home safes has to be passports. After all, we want to know where they are located when we need them, and we want to know that they are safe. The good thing is that passports and several other important documents don’t take up a lot of space, yet their importance cannot be underestimated.

Title Deeds and Key Documents

If you own your home, then knowing the title deeds is safe if your house burns will also help insurance purposes. Add in different insurance policies, and you get a picture of the type of documents that should be added to a secure home safe. Oh, and don’t forget your car titles either. That will be required should you come to sell.

With these items, it’s more important than ever before that your home safe is fireproof. You are dealing with paper here, and it’s paper that contains vital information, so the safe must be able to cope with extreme temperatures and intense heat without damaging what’s inside.

Keys

Adding spare keys or even spare car keys to your safe is a great idea. At least then, you know where to find them, as they cannot be lost if you keep on putting them in either a safe or a safety deposit box.

Original Birth Certificates

Adding birth certificates to your fireproof safe is something else that people do regularly. Birth certificates can be replaced, but it’s a hassle to do so, especially when you have other personal documents in your safety deposit box or safe to begin with.

Once again, only add them to a fireproof safe. It just makes so much sense.

Wills

If you have a copy of a will, this is another prime example of an item that should be kept in a fireproof safe. You may have the original at lawyers, but having your own copy is something that most people would do.

At least keeping your will in a fireproof safe will give you that peace of mind as it’s all part of your retirement plans and is just as important as other insurance documents that you may keep in safe deposit boxes.

Details of Bank Accounts

Having details of your bank account stored in your safe is also common. It’s a simple and reliable way of knowing where that information is kept should something go wrong and a fire destroys your home.

Family Photos

While you may keep some on display, photos that have sentimental value and that you want to protect should be placed in your home safe. As with your birth certificate or passport, this is something that won’t take up a lot of space in your home safe, and yet the security it gives you is priceless.

Prescription Drugs

This is one item people don’t think about when it comes to their fireproof safe, but placing some prescription drugs there for safekeeping can be a good idea.

It is more in line with keeping it away from children. Having some drugs in a medicine cabinet may not be the best option, and if you have kids, then you know what they will do if they can gain access to it.

Other Valuables

You may have other valuables in your home, aside from important papers, memory sticks, or cash. It’s up to you to decide which items are the most important and which ones you would like to save by placing them in fireproof safes.

Think of it this way. If you would place it in a deposit box, then you would place it in a home safe.

As you can see, there is a wide range of items you can place in a fireproof safe, and it’s not all just insurance policies either. In fact, you may wish to check what your insurance company covers and see which items can then go into a fireproof safe. It makes life easier if you then need to claim in the future.

Items You Shouldn’t Keep In Your Safe

So, we have gone through different items you may want to keep in your safe deposit box or home safe, but what about items that shouldn’t be in there? Well, just as there’s an extensive list of what can be stored safely, the same can be said for the items best kept out of your safe.

Now, there’s no point in being silly here. You may see references to not putting plants in a safe, but that’s crazy. Instead, how about things that people may initially think is a good idea?

The Master Code

You would be surprised at how many people store things such as their PIN for their bank card or the master code for the fireproof safe inside the safe. What happens if you forget the code to access the safe in the first place?

Even making a note of it and leaving it somewhere is not advisable. It is all too easy for things to go wrong with all of this, and then you will be in some serious trouble. After all, breaking into a safe isn’t easy. They are designed that way.

The Only Set of Keys

We mentioned spare keys earlier, and we do mean the spare set. If you only have one set of keys, then don’t put them in a fireproof safe. It’s only going to use up space where other valuables could have been placed instead.

You want it to access items that you don’t normally have to use or look for regularly. Putting your normal car keys in a safe to protect them makes no sense if you use them on a daily basis.

Safe Deposit Box Keys

Once again, avoid adding things connected to your safety deposit box in your safe. It can just make life harder for you when it comes to accessing them, and also, can we just go back to the issue of forgetting your master code. What happens if you need to quickly gain access to something in a safety deposit box, and you cannot because the keys are all locked up?

Find somewhere else to keep these keys, but make them blend into the background. That way, they won’t draw attention should someone break into your home and want to ransack the rooms.

A Second Fireproof Home Safe

Believe it or not, some people follow that idea on a cartoon where a safe is opened up, and then another fireproof safe is inside. Please don’t do this!

Instead, if you are concerned about security, invest in a quality fireproof safe. Get one with a strong security system that you trust, and then there’s no need to make this crazy move of having more than one fireproof safe.

What Will You Keep In Your Safe?

As you can see, there is an extensive list of items that you may wish to leave in either a safety deposit box or a safe. Cash, a birth certificate, diamonds, an insurance policy, and many other precious items can then be stored there safely and without any problem.

Just as was mentioned at the beginning, there are no laws surrounding what to keep in a home safe. It rests on your shoulders as to what you want to protect from thieves and fire. Make life easier by creating a list, and then decide which items are the most precious of all for you.

A safe can be a cost-effective way of providing you with real peace of mind regarding your most precious items and memories. It’s a sad fact that a fire can happen at any point, so don’t allow that fire to extinguish the flames of your entire life.

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