A fireproof safe can also be a lifesaver when it comes to protecting your most valued possessions and important papers. Bank safe deposit boxes may seem like a reliable and secure option when storing valuables. Cameras, security guards, and tons of steel can make this seem like a viable option but exactly how secure and convenient are safe deposit boxes?
Did you know that items stored in bank safe deposit boxes aren’t insured by the FDIC? As stated in their consumer news, “Plus, cash that’s not in a deposit account isn’t protected by FDIC insurance.” So this means that any cash you have stored in the safe deposit box that’s not deposited into an account is uninsured as is any other valuables or paperwork.
Items like passports, wills, and extra keys are not only uninsured but also inaccessible during certain hours. For these reasons, a fireproof safe is an excellent option when it comes to storing your valuables. The following items are just a few to be considered when storing items in your safe:
- Cash!!! It’s still king, and always good to have some on tap for emergency situations. Valuable jewelry and/or coins. While cash can be deposited into a banking account to gain interest, it’s also inaccessible during possible hours of need.
- Legal documents! Important documents like living wills and powers of attorney. In an emergency, access to documents like these can spare stress and anxiety saving much needed time when seconds count.
- Health care proxies and contact information. Who knows where this information disappears to when there’s an emergency.
- Pharmaceutical contact information, a list of family doctors, and prescribed medication used on a regular basis.
- Speaking of wills, if you are designated the executor in a will and it’s stored in a bank safe deposit box, the box it typically sealed when the box’s owner passes.
- Other documents like original social security cards, original birth certificates, and passports should also be kept in a fireproof safe for retrieval in times of need.
- Important documents related to retirement and bank accounts, outstanding debts and creditor information are also a great idea to keep in a fireproof safe.
- Titles to your vehicles and extra keys are also helpful to have handle in an emergency.
- Insurance policies for your property and your agents contact information. If you have to file a claim at an odd hour, you will need easy access to these documents.
- Family photos saved to external hard drives or CDs are not only valuable; they’re irreplaceable. When storing magnetic media like hards drives, be sure the safe you choose will protect your data. In these cases, you may need to opt for a fireproof data/media safe that provides a higher level of protection from fire.
Lastly, in addition to storing your valuable items in a fireproof safe, you should also consider placing paper items like cash, birth certificates, etc. in a waterproof ziplock bag then placing that inside a fireproof bag. This will give an added measure of protection from fire or the fireman’s water hose should them have to extinguish a fire in the area of your safe.
Click here to read more about fireproof safes and their classifications.