21 of the Smallest Things You Can Collect

Collecting is a fun and an interesting hobby to a lot of people. It could be as simple as collecting some souvenir keychains from places you have traveled to or highly valuable basketball cards. There are so many different things to collect.

The reasons why people keep collections are almost as infinite and varied as the different types of collections one can keep. Some people collect for sentimental reasons, to preserve the past. Others collect as a hobby when they like a particular item and find it unique and attractive.

different types of dice

But others collect for investment. Even if just a hobby, some collections are highly valuable. These are mostly items that are rare or vintage collections. Time makes these items more valuable.

Whatever your reason for keeping a collection, the items you collect will likely take on a special meaning in your life. You’ll want to preserve these precious items, and a safety deposit box is a perfect in which to keep them. A safety deposit box helps to safely secure these valuable collections of yours.

Small collection items can easily fit in a safety deposit box, so here are some of the smallest things that you can possibly collect:

different stamps with magnifier

1. Stamps

With different colors, prints and designs, collecting stamps are fun and interesting. The most popular types of stamps to collect are postage stamps, with unique designs from different places all over the world.

2. Spoons

Souvenir spoons with inscriptions of cities and landmarks in Europe became popular in the mid 1800’s for American travelers. With gorgeous and intricate designs and places embellished on the spoons, these are a wonderful item to collect.

3. Thimbles

Thimbles are small and easy to collect. Some vintage thimbles and commemorative thimbles are rare and thus of high value.

coin collection

4. Coins

Coin collecting is educational, exciting, and even affordable. Each coin comes with a historical mark from a time period. This makes for an interesting hobby as you will get to be more knowledgeable about the year and the notable figures at that time of each coin’s printing.

You can even buy and trade coins. From commemorative coins to rare ancient coins, these are all great to collect.

5. Paper Money

Paper money is also a popular item to collect. It is nice to collect especially old ones in different currencies, each with its historical significance. Attractive colors and designs make paper currency exciting and wonderful to collect.


6. Trading Cards

Sports trading cards like basketball and baseball are some of the most popular trading cards, and those with the signature of a famous player can be incredibly valuable. But sports cards aren’t the only trading cards – don’t forget about popular gaming cards like Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh and Magic: The Gathering or old school favorites like Garbage Pail Kids.

7. Trading Pins

The concept of trading pins started from baseball and softball. There are a lot of different designs of pins which are made for sports teams. Pins make a perfect collection for sports enthusiasts as it captures the memento of the game and the sport.

In recent years, the popularity of trading and collecting Disney pins has exploded. With classic characters and icons, Disney pins are perfect for Disney fans at heart.

8. Sports Collection Rings

For sports fanatics, this is such a cool collection to have. Super Bowl rings, baseball rings, basketball rings, whichever sport you’re into you can likely find a ring. These attractive and striking rings are worth collecting, and with their precious and semi-precious stones are also highly valuable.


9. Jewelry

Costume jewelry aside (which makes for a fun, unique collection in its own right), jewelry can be quite an expensive collection to have and requires utmost care and security. From earrings, rings to watches, a safe deposit box is one of the safes places to store your most valuable pieces.

10. Pocket Watch

Pocket watches are small and valuable and would be good for collecting. These timeless classic designs are worth collecting as a hobby or an investment.

There are a lot of brands and types of pocket watches and the value of each varies from age, brand name and rarity. Usually, older pocket watches are more valued than their modern counterparts.

With different vintage and modern aesthetic styles, the most sought after brands are Hamilton, Waltham, Howard, Elgin, Hampden, Rolex, Ball and Patek Philippe. These pocket watch brands are trusted for quality and craftsmanship.

a man holiding a pocket watch.

There are three most common types of pocket watches. The most oldest design is the open face pocket watch which doesn’t have a cover. Another type is the full hunter face pocket watch that features a metal cover. This was created to be more durable than the first since the open face pocket watch tends to break easily.

Lastly, the half hunter pocket watch has a metal case with a window in the middle. It usually has numerals around the window so it will be easier to read the time.

11. Smoking Pipes

With different shapes and designs, ranging in style throughout the decades, collecting pipes both vintage and new gives you the opportunity to build a collection with a lot of variety. The craftsmanship of the designs of these tobacco pipes are fascinating.

12. Lighters

The most popular lighters to collect are Zippos. They have a lot of different designs which makes it enjoyable to collect, and since the restrictions of the late 20th century put stricter limits on tobacco advertising, those with characters and insignias like Joe Camel can be among the most rare. A lighter’s small size makes it a great contender for safe keeping in a safety deposit box.

shot glasses

13. Shot Glasses

Whether you collect these shot glasses as a souvenir collection or just for fun, there’s a lot of designs and themes available.

One of the most valuable collections of shot glasses are the pre-prohibition sample glasses. These are given away to customers as a way to promote the brand during the pre-prohibition era. These shot glasses are given by liquor houses and whisky saloons to sample their merchandise. It usually has the name of the manufacturer on the glass for customers to be able to distinguish the brand.

Another valuable collection are the commemorative sets such as the Coca-Cola glasses which were made every year to celebrate Christmas.

casino chips, dice and cards

14. Casino Chips & Dice

Collecting casino chips and dice is an easy and rewarding hobby for casino enthusiasts. These colorful chips are easy to collect because they don’t take up too much space and are easy to obtain. These small items are satisfying to collect. It is easy to find and keep, and there are so many colors and types to choose from.

Casino dice usually comes in pairs with matching serial numbers. Dice that are used and played in a particular casino that the collector likes are also sought after.

Some people collect casino chips by denomination, others collect chips from different casinos. Chips from the glamorous casino era after World War 2 in Las Vegas and Atlantic City are highly sought after by collectors.

Old casinos that have closed like Dunes in Las Vegas and Playboy Club in Atlantic City are also very appealing to collectors. Vintage chips with high denomination that are won and bought from the casino are also valuable.

pocket knives

15. Pocket Knives

Take your pick at pocket knives from antique ones to modern classics. Some are rare collectible knives with beautifully, intricate designs.

One of the most collected brands of pocket knife is the W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Company. They manufacture high quality traditional pocket knives. Case often releases limited edition knives of a certain quantity which is a great collection for knife enthusiasts and collectors.

They also team up and collaborate with different brands and notable names like Ford, Harley-Davidson, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley and many more for an exclusive knife design. Another great collection from Case is their first production run which has a numbered stamp to specify that it was part of their first manufactured batch.

16. Cross Pendants

Collecting vintage and beautifully made crosses is a specific subset of jewelry collecting enthusiasts. You can find so many different designs which are appealing to one’s eye. It is also easy to collect as it doesn’t take up much space and is both charming and compact.

Collectors usually look for gold crosses in white or yellow gold, a beautiful addition to their jewelry collection. Rare, antique and vintage cross pendants are also a sought after cross pendant collectible.

a girl handing a comprass

17. Compass

Compasses have been used as a navigation tool in the past and a good item to collect. The oldest and most common type are magnetic compasses. Earliest compasses used Lodestone, a particular type of the mineral magnetite which is a natural magnet that attracts iron.

Later on, this was used together with a steel needle for it to align in a north-south direction. Over the years, there have been plenty of technical improvements in regards to the magnetic compass.

Compasses continue to be an essential instrument and a source of interest to many people. These vintage navigational tools are perfect for historians, nautical enthusiasts or anyone that adores these gorgeous and elegant looking compasses.

guitar with a lot of guitar picks

18. Guitar Picks

Guitar picks don’t take up much space, and have endless varieties. Guitar picks from bands and artists you love are definitely worth collecting.

Tortoiseshell was one of the first and popular materials used for the guitar pick but as it became an endangered species, this became illegal. Materials such as bone, ivory and wood were also common back at the time.

Soon after, picks made from celluloid, a type of plastic, were introduced by D’Andrea Company. One of the most expensive guitar picks right now are made of meteorites and produced by an Australian company called Starpics.

bottle caps

19. Bottle Caps

Bottle caps are definitely a fun item to collect. You can collect them when you travel all around and sample all these different brews and drinks.

Bottle caps are an inexpensive collection to start but some rare ones have a higher value. One of the most valuable bottle caps that has been sold is the 1940’s Pepsi Cola War Time Bottle Cap that was sold for $1,691. Prices for rare and one of a kind bottle caps can reach up to $500.

Throughout the years, there are a lot of sodas that have been introduced to the market but are no longer in production. Sodas like Orbitz, Josta, Aspen Soda, Bubble Up, Clearly Canadian have been discontinued. The bottle caps from these sodas would also be a good collection to have.

lego toy

20. Lego Minifigures

From Harry Potter Lego collectible minifigures to Disney series, these are a fun and cute collection to do. There are many series and different characters of Lego minifigures to collect.

There were only 20 Lego minifigures when it first came out, all with the same face design. Now decades later, there are about 8,000 Lego minifigures characters with hundreds of different face designs.

The most expensive and rarest Lego minifigure is the 14k gold Boba Fett from the original Star Wars trilogy. There were only 2 of these that were made by Lego back in 2010.

21. Small Toys

Some vintage and collectible toys from our childhood have gained considerably in value throughout the years. Toys like Star Wars action figures and rare hot wheels cost a lot more today.

Star Wars action figures like Jawa 1977, Darth Vader 1977 and Anakin Skywalker 1985 are now collectible items that are worth a lot of money. Hot wheels cars like the 1968 Over Chrome Mustang and the 1969 Pink, Rear-Loading Beach Bomb go for as high as $100,000.

These are things that you can collect that can easily fit in a safety deposit box. Whatever items you may collect, it is always important to keep it safe and in good condition.

To learn more about getting started with some of the collections mentioned in this article, be sure to check out our collectors guides:

At Safe Deposit Center, we help people store many collections. Whether it is a collection of coins or a big artwork. We make sure that your collections are safe and secure. 

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

21 Hit Movies that Revolve Around Safety Deposit Boxes

There are so many hit movies that revolve around safety deposit boxes. Action, thriller, romantic movies, you name it. There’s something interesting with movies that revolves around a safety deposit box.

It’s probably because of the mystery of the contents inside, or the challenge of breaking into one. Not an easy feat, as safety deposit boxes are designed and built to protect their contents from outside elements or intruders.

clapper, popcorn and cd

Regardless of how the story of the movie goes, safety deposit boxes are reliable and useful to keep your valuable items in a safe and secured place. People, whether movie stars or average people, use safety deposit boxes in their everyday lives to protect their valuables and important documents.

We rounded up 21 hit movies that revolve around a safety deposit box. If you haven’t seen these great movies (be aware this list contains spoilers), get your comfiest clothes on and snacks nearby and get ready to binge!


1. Casino (1995)

Ace (Robert De Niro), a gambling expert, has been given a casino to run in Las Vegas. He deposits cash into a safety deposit box and gives his lover Ginger (Sharon Stone), the only key.

2. The Bourne Identity (2002)

Suffering from amnesia, Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) looks to the contents of a bank safety deposit box to get clues on his identity. Inside are passports with different names, large amounts of cash and a handgun.

3. Inside Man (2006)

The movie revolves around a bank heist which was led by Dalton (Clive Owen). As Arthur Case (Christopher Plummer), the founder of the bank, learns of the robbery, he enlists the help of Madeleine White (Jodie Foster) to protect the contents of a particular safe deposit box. The contents of the box lead to some incriminating items from Arthur’s past.

couple in the movie house

4. Total Recall (1990)

A science fiction action film starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. The movie tells the story of an ordinary laborer, Douglas (Arnold), and his dreams of going to Mars. He then visits a company that plants false memories, and is later led to a safe deposit box for clues on his real identity.

5. The Da Vinci Code (2006)

A race against time to solve a murder with clues in Da Vinci Paintings leads Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) and Sophie Neveu (Audrey Tautou) to a Swiss Bank trying to gain access to a safety deposit box to unravel more clues.

6. John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017)

John Wick (Keanu Reeves) finds out that he has a huge bounty on his head and faces off with some of the deadliest killers. This brings him to retrieve his safety deposit box and collects his weapons, clothes, gold coins and passport contained inside.

a girl with a bowl of popcorn watching a movie

7. Mary Poppins Returns (2018)

Mary Poppins which stars Emily Blunt returns to help the Banks’ family and Michael’s children after a personal loss. Michael and Jane went to the bank to look for the bank shares certificate on the family’s safety deposit box only to find family documents and the deed of the house.

8. A Fish Called Wanda (1988)

The movie follows a group of thieves who rob a diamond shop, hide the stolen diamonds in a safe deposit box, only to double-cross each other as the movie’s plot unfolds.

9. Red 2 (2013)

A retired CIA agent, Frank Moses (Bruce Willis), tracks down a nuclear weapon with the help of his team of elite operatives. They tracked down a safety deposit box which holds information about Nightshade, a portable nuclear weapon.

friends watching a  movie in 3D

10. The Do-Over (2016)

An action comedy film starring Adam Sandler and David Spade. Two old high school buddies fake their own deaths and take on new identities. They access a safe deposit box (from one of the two dead guys they stole their new identities from) to find that the box contains money and a key to a mansion.

11. The Bridges of Madison County (1995)

A love affair between Francesca (Meryl Streep) and Robert (Clint Eastwood) set in 1965. In the present, the children of the deceased Francesca, sorts through her safe deposit box discovering their late mother’s romantic affair.

12. August: Osage County (2013)

A dysfunctional family reunites after Beverly (Sam Shepard) disappears from their house. Beverly and his wife, Violet (Meryl Streep), share a joint safe deposit box which has cash and jewelry – but Violet emptied the contents of the box when Beverly disappeared.

movie tickets and popcorn

13. A Single Man (2009)

After suffering the loss of his lover, George (Colin Firth) is unable to cope with the grief and loneliness. He empties his safe deposit box and packs up his office, intending to take his own life…

14. Triple 9 (2016)

Criminals and corrupt cops execute an impossible bank heist to retrieve a safety deposit box for a Russian mobster who blackmailed them.

15. The Pelican Brief (1993)

When Darby Shaw (Julia Roberts) uncovers a conspiracy involving the death of two Supreme Court Justices, she is attacked. Meanwhile, Gray Grantham (Denzel Washington), a political reporter, was contacted by an informant regarding the assassinations. When the informant is killed, both Darby and Gray visit his widow who gives them a key to a safe deposit box. Inside are documents and a videotape of evidence of the person who ordered the assassination.


16. The Photograph (2020)

A romantic drama film about Mae (Issa Rae), an estranged daughter of a known photographer who died unexpectedly, who finds a photograph in a safety deposit box. She delves into her mother’s early life and falls in love with a journalist.

17. My One and Only (2009)

Anne (Renée Zellweger) leaves her husband, collects her belongings and empties their safe deposit box. She and her two sons, George (Logan Lerman) and Robbie (Mark Rendall) go on a road trip across America to find a better life.

18. Widows (2018)

When Harry (Liam Neeson) and his gang of criminals die during a police standoff after stealing from a crime boss, their four widows are left with a huge debt. Veronica (Viola Davis), Harry’s wife, was given a key to a safe deposit box which contains a notebook that has a detailed plan of a $5 million robbery.

group of people in the movie house

19. Munich (2005)

Following the aftermath of the massacre at the Munich Olympics, a team of five men went on a hunt to find and kill the terrorists responsible for the murders. Headed by Avner (Eric Bana), the mission was funded through U.S. cash deposited in several safe deposit boxes, which Avner has the only access to.

20. Sexy Beast (2000)

Don Logan (Ben Kingsley) recruits a retired gangster, Gal (Ray Winstone) for one last bank heist raiding safe deposit boxes.

21. The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane (1976)

A film starring Jodie Foster as Rynn Jacobs, a young girl who lives alone in a house in Wells Harbor, Maine. As a self reliant girl, she keeps her money to pay for things in a safe deposit box.

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

Basketball Memorabilia: Tips To Determine What’s Valuable and What’s Not

You may be a basketball fanatic or just an avid collector, but if you are reading this, there’s a high chance that you are both. Some collectors simply like to bring items together to complete a set, while others aim at collecting items that are valuable. This is especially true if the purpose of collecting is largely based on investment. If investment is the aim of your basketball memorabilia collection, you will need to determine which items are valuable and which ones are not.  Here are some tips to consider when making that determination. 

basketball hoop backboard net against bright blue sky

Do Various Background Checks

It can be hard to know if an item is valuable just by looking at it. So it’s best to do some research on which items are currently valuable in the basketball memorabilia market before you start shopping. You can locate records of past auctions to see what was sold and how much they were sold for. This will give you an idea of potential income when you chose to part with your item.

You can also check hobby publications, as well as forums and chat rooms created specifically for collectors of basketball memorabilia. These sources can be valuable when you have already spotted a potential item to add to your collection.

Try to find out as many physical characteristics as you can, as well as information on the general cost across the globe, and any information that is available about possible fakes. A reputable online memorabilia price guide could also prove helpful. It’s fast and easy, but generally requires a subscription. 

You can also check online auction websites and marketplaces such as eBay, Etsy, Craiglist, etc. These places are bound to have a few fakes, but also a few authentic ones. You can use the opportunity to see the prices quoted as well as what other buyers have to say about that particular seller. It is a good way to see if the market is already saturated with the item you are interested in which may affect its resale value and timeframe.

basketball player holding nike basketball swoosh

Learn How to Spot a Fake

Naturally, wherever there is a lucrative business venture, there will also be fraud and fakes. There is always someone who wants to be in on the money without putting in all the work. Doing your research is key to avoiding fakes, but you need to put that research to good use.

In doing your research, you will find that some athletes are affiliated with specific retailers and would not autograph an item from another company. So it’s safe to say that if the athlete and retailer do not align on your potential collectible, you need to take your sleuthing skills to the next level.

Remember that sports memorabilia is a lucrative business for the athletes as well and as such their signatures are very valuable. If you know how much they charge to sign an item, that will at least give you a base price for the item. If the item is being sold for less than the price of the signature, you should probably keep looking.

basketball hoop net glass backboard against turquoise blue sky retro filter

Purchase From Reputable Dealers

It goes without saying that you should only purchase your items from reputable dealers. If you are unsure of how to find a reputable dealer in your area, you could go back to the online forum or chat room to get some ideas on where to go and who to trust. These forums are usually filled with serious collectors, who can quickly weed out a fake and give productive advice.

A reputable dealer is one that is open about their processes. They would generally let you know how their items are authenticated. Some dealers will provide you with an affidavit that is notarized and signed by the athlete that the memorabilia is associated with. Some will also be signed by a company representative. The affidavit would ideally include the date it was signed, where it was signed, and details about the item itself so that it cannot be misrepresented with another item.

A reputable dealer would also check the condition of the item and the signature before outfitting with some form of tamper-proof security measure to maintain its validity.

wilson basketball in game flying by scorekeepers

Get the item Authenticated

While it is ideal to purchase from a reputable dealer, the truth is some treasures are found in unexpected places. You could find a basketball memorabilia gem at someone’s yard sale, or even a flea market. If you can, express your interest in the item and send a picture to your support group to get their opinion on its possible resale value before purchasing.

If you are unable to get any assistance in that moment, you should try to find a balance between what you are willing to spend and the potential loss of a valuable item. If you are not able to tell right away if it will be valuable, try to not spend more than you think you could sell it back for. If the seller knows the type of item they have for sale and tries to convince you that it is authentic and valuable, let them know that you will get it appraised and try to get a money-back guarantee in case it turns out to be fake.

Whenever you acquire a new item that didn’t come directly from the dealer, you should get it authenticated by an independent authenticator such as James Spence Authentication (JSA) or the Professional Sports Authenticators (PSA). That is of course if it wasn’t already accompanied by a certificate of authenticity from the Memorabilia Evaluation and Research Services (MEARS). 

Old basketball hoop tattered net backboard against retro filter sky

The Art of Resale

When you have a basketball memorabilia that has been authenticated and valued, that doesn’t automatically mean that you will now be able to sell it for the price it was valued at. The fact is the buyer also plays a part in how well the transaction goes.

For instance, if you are selling to a dealer, they would actually not be looking to pay the full book value or even close to it. On the other hand, if you were selling to a collector, they would most likely be more willing to pay the full book value, or close enough. This is especially true if they need it to complete a set and also if it’s not easy to find locally.

If you sell it online, it could go either way depending on the rarity of the item. Most buyers in online markets are looking to get a deal below book value, and if you have online competition you may need to adjust your price or be content with holding out for a while before making the sale.

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

The Pros and Cons of Home Safes vs. Safety Deposit Boxes

The word “safe” can be defined as a risk-free state, a danger-free zone, or a state or area in which there is minimal to no chance of damage or harm. Therefore, a “safe,” which is a secured container used for the purpose of storing important items, is aimed at keeping those items risk-free and away from damage.

A home safe is generally a small metal box with heavy-duty side panels and an equally secured door. The door usually has a number pad or dial knob to allow the owner to set a passcode for security.

A safe deposit box, on the other hand, is generally a small container kept securely in the confines of a bank or a private vault. This box generally has two keys where the owner keeps one and the bank keeps the other. Both keys are needed simultaneously to open the box at any given time. More sophisticated boxes may have biometrics such as fingerprints or other scans, but it still often requires two people to access it. At a private facility like Safe Deposit Center, only the box renter has keys.

Some people prefer to keep their valuables closer to home so they choose to use a home safe, while others find that a bank or private facility is more secure, so they use a safe deposit box instead. There are pros and cons for each, but ultimately, a safe deposit box is a no-brainer if you are seeking security and piece of mind for your valuables.

The Pros of Home Safes


Home safes are usually relatively small, which means that if the owner needs to move to a new home, they can just pick it up and go. Some homeowners will build it into the wall, but it’s still generally pretty easy and convenient to move a safe.

Quick Access

This probably is the biggest advantage of a home safe. It’s right there and easily accessible in the event of an emergency. It takes minutes to open it and retrieve your items to be on your way. This is often ideal for passports, medical records, medical insurance, and other similar items.


When your safe is stored in your home, there is no one to put limitations on what you can and cannot keep in your safe. In short, as long as it fits, you can store it in your safe without regard for anyone else’s opinions and suggestions.

Grouped Insurance

If your home and its contents are insured, it would most likely cover the contents of your safe as well — as long as they are declared in the home’s contents. There would be no need to get it insured separately, unless the items within are extremely valuable. 

The Cons of Home Safes

Lack of Security

The safe may seem like a secure option for your valuables. But, a home safe isn’t always as secure as it seems. For instance, a smaller-sized safe could be targeted by burglars.

Lack of Durability

There are nature’s elements to consider that may affect your home safe. While the vast majority of safes on the market are water- and fire-resistant, they are not fully water- or fire-proof. This means that in the case of a flood or fire, the risk of some or all of your items becoming damaged is still pretty high. Also, the level of durability will mostly come down to the quality of the safe, with some higher-end safes costing thousands of dollars.

No Legal Protection

Unless you have left the code or combination to access the safe with someone you trust, the safe could be inaccessible if you pass away. If you keep items you want to pass on to beneficiaries, it would be difficult. There would be no legal ground to make a claim for its contents.

The Cons of Safe Deposit Boxes


The main con of having a safe deposit box is not having it in your home to access instantly at any time should the need arise. Many private safety deposit box rental facilities offer amenities to compensate, such as extended access hours.

Recurring Cost

Safe deposit boxes usually incur a monthly or an annual fee, as opposed to an in-home safe that you pay for once and is yours for as long as you choose to keep it. These fees are relatively low, and depending on the length of time you need to rent a box, may end up costing less than purchasing a home safe.

The Pros of Safe Deposit Boxes

Consistency in Quality

One of the great things about safe deposit boxes is their consistency. Financial institutions and private vaults invest in durable boxes that are waterproof and fireproof, standing a greater chance of surviving a natural disaster than if it was at your home.

Insurance and Confidentiality

While it is true that the contents of your safe-deposit boxes are not automatically covered by your deposit insurance, it makes it so much easier to insure the box itself based specifically on its contents. This means that if you have an extremely valuable item such as parts of a collection or family heirloom, you can guarantee its security with the Safe Deposit Box Insurance Company (SDBIC) without needing to disclose your items.

Safe Deposit Center doesn’t report contents of the boxes to any government agency, and you can even safely store firearms. If you try to include the items of your home safe in your homeowner’s insurance, you will need to declare those items in order to get them covered. So if coverage and privacy are what you are looking for, a safe deposit box is the better option. 


Banks and other financial institutions do experience disasters and robberies, but when they occur, commercial insurance covers losses. Banks and private vaults are automatically fitted with security measures that do not require you to make additional payments. This is opposed to your home where you would need to pay for home security to ensure that your home safe and/or its contents are not stolen, and insurance to cover your losses in such an event.

It doesn’t have to be either/or: having a home safe doesn’t preclude one from renting a safe deposit box. However, if the items that you plan to store in a safe are highly valuable, either with monetary or sentimental value, you should consider the most secure option.

You may save money by not selecting a safe deposit box, but then you would still need to pay to beef up your home security which could be more costly. If you want to store items that you will need to access frequently, then a home safe could suffice. If you are looking for long-term storage of valuable items and documents, a safe deposit box is the preferred way to go.

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

7 Tips On How To Help Manage Your Senior Parents’ Finances

As your parents become older, their physical health may gradually start to decline, and that in itself may become your responsibility to manage. However, their mental health may prove even more tricky to deal with especially when you have to take over their finances. With the degradation of mental health, your parents may begin to forget which bills to pay and how much, or even think that they have already done it.

Additionally, they may become more vulnerable to unscrupulous people who are trying to scam them or steal their identity. One of the challenges you may encounter with attempting to take over your parents finances is denial. Most seniors may resist admitting that they are no longer capable of taking care of things the way they used to, and as such, they may be hesitant to hand over the reins in an attempt to maintain their independence.

Here are a few tips you can use to help the transitioning process, both from a legal and moral standpoint. 

Manage Senior's Finances

1. Know When It’s Time To Take Over

Depending on your relationship with your parents, the “right time” may vary. However, it’s always best to try to get ahead of the situation before it even develops. While your parents are still mentally and physically healthy, it’s good practice to have a conversation with them about their financial processes and plans.

If your parents do not live with you, it may be hard to detect a decline in their mental state, but you can look for signs. Check-in on their purchase history from time to time and occasionally check how often they go to the bank. Unusual purchases or frequent bank trips could mean that they are forgetting things or is possibly being the victim of a scam. Also, check-in on important bills that could have serious consequences if they are not paid on time. This would include insurance policies, mortgages, etc. If your parents are starting to forget to make these payments, it is a sign that your aid may be needed.

Senior's Finances - Communication

2. Have the Conversation

Even when you know that its time to step in, it may still be difficult to have a conversation with your parents regarding their finances. This is especially difficult if you are not very close or they are very private. However, it is best to speak to them while they can still rationalize the process and see the benefit of the decision. This would allow them to hand over information and documents willingly which would be simpler than having to get a forced Power of Attorney.

Once you have had that conversation, or several regarding the topic, you will be able to determine what your next steps will have to be. Other things to talk about are future plans regarding their assets and living arrangements. Would it be feasible to stay in their home or an assisted facility? If they choose to stay home, can a live-in professional caregiver be afforded? You should try to delicately talk about their options so that you know what to do when the time comes.

Power of Attorney

3. Power of Attorney

Sometimes your parents would have already had a power of attorney which may be a friend or another family member. If there isn’t one already in place, you can consider having one drawn up to give you legal authority to make financial decisions on your parent’s behalf. Please note that the power of attorney document can have limitations based on the rights outlined in the document. It can also be revoked by your parents at any time. If not revoked, it will stay in effect until your parents pass away. Another thing to keep in mind is that even though you may now have access to all their finances or have a Power of Attorney, the money still belongs to your parents. Therefore, you should try to involve them in the financial decisions as much as possible.

Senior's Finances - Storage

4. Know Where the Financial Records Are Stored

Some senior are trusting of banks, while others do not trust them at all. Find out where your senior parents store their important documents and access cards. Ask for passcodes, passwords, and keys to safes and safety deposit boxes. Even if they don’t choose to have you take over right now, knowing where these items are will put you in a position to step-in in case of an emergency.

You can also be added a co-signer for the safety deposit box to make it easier for you to access it without needing further documentation. Know the names of all affiliated banks and account numbers. If they still pay a mortgage, you should know which company handles their mortgage and what the payments are. If they have investments, you should have that information as well to be able to manage them and take over if something happens. 

Senior's Finances - Keep it simple

5. Make It Simpler

Now that you are aware of where everything is, it may be a good idea to make it simpler. This will be beneficial to both you and your parents, especially if they are still handling some of the finances themselves. If they have multiple bank accounts and brokers, it may be a good idea to consolidate to one or two banks only to minimize having to monitor and deal with multiple institutions. You may find it easier to combine their assets with yours to manage it more efficiently, but this should be avoided where possible as it may lead to a conflict of interest. If anything should happen and it is deemed that you contradicted your fiduciary responsibilities, there may be legal implications.

Senior's Finance - Bills

6. Gather and Organize All Bills and Expenses

Once you have access to all financial-related documents, gather and organize the bills including credit cards, utility bills, mortgage payments, car payments, and any other expenses that may be monthly or have a fixed payment increment. This way you can ensure that your parents’ income is able to cover their expenses and will be paid on time to avoid lapses, repossessions, or disconnections.

Senior's Finance - Insurance

7. Medical Care and Insurance

If your senior parents receive government assistance for health care, such as Medicare, Social Security, or Medicaid, you need to check that they are still eligible and will be if they should become incapacitated. Find out if you will require specific permissions or documentation in order to take over the management of their accounts.

Aside from the steps outlined above, you can still help to manage your senior parents’ finances by giving them sound advice. Inform them of ways to avoid being scammed. Inform them of ways elderly people have been scammed in the past, but not as an outright warning but more of an informative story. Let them know that if they come across any person or situation that seems even slightly suspicious, to let you double-check it for them just to be safe. 

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

Safe & Sound: 15 Items You Want to Store in a Safe Deposit Box

Utilizing a safety deposit box is still the best way to store and secure your valuables. This option is actually recommended by local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies. This may be due to the high frequency of burglary and natural disasters that occurs to homeowners annually.  Even relief agencies such a the American Red Cross and FEMA recommend safety deposit boxes.

Now that you are convinced that a safety deposit box is necessary, you may be wondering which items to store in it for safekeeping. In the following list, you will notice some items that you would have been told some years ago to not store in your safe deposit box. However, with the introduction of more streamlined safety deposit box insurance coverage terms, you can store almost anything with confidence.

Passport in a pocket


This would have probably not made the list in the past, but the truth is your passport is a very important document which should be adequately secured. If you do not travel often and have other forms of ID, it would be wise to store your passport and other travel documents in a safe deposit box. You should still probably place it in a plastic bag for added protection before placing it in the box. 

Certificate of Marriage

Marriage Certificate

A marriage certificate is a very important document that is not generally needed often. Most places would allow you to send a scanned copy and present the original at a later time. You can then schedule a time to visit your safe deposit box to obtain the certificate for use.

Birth Certificate

Birth Certificate

Similar to the marriage certificate, you will most likely not need your birth certificate often. It is always good practice to have copies in your possession to quickly view or use in a business transaction. You can then present the original afterward if necessary.

Last will and testament with cup and glasses


Deciding whether to put your will in the safe box or not can be tricky because if something happens, it may be difficult for someone to access the box to retrieve it. Even someone assigned as a power of attorney would still need to consult the courts to be granted access to your box. However, a will is still a very important and valuable document and should be secured. Therefore, it is best to store it in the safe box, ensure your lawyer as a copy, and also have a trusted cosigner attached to your box who would be able to access it in case of an emergency.

Deeds and Titles rolled

Deeds and Titles

Deeds and titles are perfect candidates for safe deposit boxes. They are extremely valuable, but rarely ever needed for representation, and are frustrating to replace. A car title, for instance, is mostly only needed if you plan to sell your vehicle and need to sign it over to the new owner, or if you plan to pass it on to another family member. In the same way, if you own real estate, you may not need to present the documents for a very long time after the transaction is complete, but all those documents must be important, otherwise you wouldn’t need to sign so many. It’s just best to keep them safe just in case you need to sell the property, or if any discrepancies arise later.

Diamond ring on her finger


Jewelry is probably among the most common items stored in a safety deposit box. This is especially true if the pieces have a high resale value or is a family heirloom. Storing your high-valued jewelry in a safe deposit box is a smart choice given the rate of burglary and the fact that these pieces are generally never worn or rarely so. 

vintage watch

Family Heirlooms

Family heirlooms can hold monetary or sentimental value. Some persons would debate on which is more important. Nonetheless, it is agreed that securing these items requires consideration and a safety deposit box is always a good option.


People collect items for different reasons. Some people start a collection for the purpose of investing, while others start a collection because they have true admiration for an item or sets of items. Whether it’s stamps, coins, or other similar collectibles, it is imperative that they are stored and secured safely. The American Numismatic Association recommends storing coins in safety deposit boxes as opposed to home safes, even if they have electronic security systems.

Stocks and Bonds

It is true that most certificates have gone digital, but if you happen to have paper ones that may have been passed down to you, it is best to store them in a safe box. This is especially important if you are not sure where these certificates were generated and their current value. Even if the certificate does not have a worthy conversion value, it may still be a collectible.

girl signing a document

Legal Contracts

A contract is a legally binding document signed by two or more parties, therefore, it should be considered important. Depending on the contract, it may not be something that you need to review often, but having it in a secure place for when you do is simply logical. 

signing insurance policy

Insurance Policies

Similarly to the will, it may tricky to store insurance policies in your safe deposit box. But it may still be the safest place for it. The aim is to ensure that there are easily accessible copies available and/or a trusted cosigner to access the original if necessary.

big framed arts

Valuable art pieces

You obviously won’t be able to store large framed art pieces in a small safety deposit box, but you could store and insure it in a risk-assessed vault, or some other storage facility that has blanket policies. This way you wouldn’t have to worry about appraisals or deductibles, but you could ensure your valuable art is secured and insured.

Mortgage documents

Mortgage documents fall in the same category as deeds and titles. They won’t be needed often, but it is still important to have them stored in a secure location for if, and when they are needed.

gold bars and coins

Precious metals

This category is separated from jewelry to only include items such a bullion and ingots made from precious metals. Whether you have been investing for a long time or just acquired your first bullion, it is naturally imperative to store and insure your investment.


Home inventory (Pictures or Videos)

A record of your home inventory can be extremely valuable for the purpose of insurance claims. This can be physical pictures or digitally stored media on a drive. Most things are stored on a cloud these days, but it couldn’t hurt to have a physical copy just in case the cloud files get corrupted, accidentally deleted, or are just inaccessible for whatever reason.

Now that you have an idea of which items to store in your safety deposit box, here are some additional tips to further improve their security. Store paper products such as documents and pictures in a plastic container or bag before inserting them in the box. This will help to protect them from water damage in the event of a flood. It is also wise to store jewelry in air-tight containers lined with a soft fabric to minimize tarnishing. Try to also keep an account of the items in your box just in case. 

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

Shopping For Safe Deposit Box Insurance? Here’s What You Need to Know

Safekeeping certain items means a secured and protected environment is needed. Whether those items are important documents, jewelry or perhaps an art collection, getting a safety deposit box is a decision many people turn to when they want a peace of mind. Safe deposit boxes are available at federally insured financial institutions, such as banks and credit unions, but are also offered at private facilities such as the Safe Deposit Center.

Each renter gets their own assigned box which generally has two keys. One key is given to you the box owner, and the other is secured within the financial institution. For added security, it generally takes both keys used in tandem to open the box at any given time. Some institutions have a key-less option, which usually utilizes some form of biometrics, such as fingerprint scans, for access. At Safe Deposit Center, we use biometric access.

A safety deposit box is typically used for important documents or important items that are not needed often but have a very high value. This value can be monetary, functional, or sentimental. Here are the answers to commonly asked questions when considering safety deposit box insurance.

safety deposit box

Do I need safe deposit box insurance?

While the Safe Deposit Center doesn’t offer insurance and doesn’t require renters to carry it, insurance can be obtained through third-party firms. The Safe Deposit Center maintains a high level of security to safeguard renters’ property. Among the highlights are secure biometric access, 24/7 security monitoring with cameras throughout the facility, and private rooms where renters can review their valuables. Privacy is a paramount concern and Safe Deposit Center staff do not escort renters into the viewing rooms.  

safety deposit box

How can I be assured that my safe deposit box won’t be compromised?

The Safe Deposit Center is in business to alleviate people’s concern about storing valuable property. The reason why our renters choose us is because we offer unparalleled privacy and an assortment of units to store items of all sizes. When a renter signs up to store with us, s/he can be completely anonymous – meaning, even our staff will not be able to reach you. As a private business, we do not report our clients or their belongings – as long as they adhere to our policies – to governmental entities.

old photos

What if my stored items do not have monetary value?

While some commonly stored items aren’t worth much money, they may have importance beyond monetary value. Safekeeping things such as family heirlooms or old family photos or documents is a good idea, because you’ll be able to declutter your home or apartment while ensuring that your items remain in good shape for the next generation. Whether it’s an old hard drive with home video or tax information, or a thumb drive, keeping a backup copy in storage is wise and convenient. No more misplacing something or turning the house upside down to find something you have misplaced.

safety deposit box numbers

Where can I get safety deposit box insurance?

Safety deposit box insurance is quite a new and niche type of coverage. It may not have been offered commonly in the past, but it’s available. Renters would be well-served to check in with their homeowner’s insurance carrier first and do some research independently to find the best option for them.  

There are insurance options that don’t require appraisal or disclosure of the stored property. At Safe Deposit Center, it’s at the heart of our policy to grant our renter’s the utmost privacy they desire. As long you’re not storing anything illegal, we do not need to know what it is or even your name. We don’t even require that you provide your contact information, and don’t keep extra keys.

gold jewelries

Can I update the items in my safety deposit box if my insurance policy is already generated?

This will depend on the terms of your individual insurance policy. If you are unsure of how adding or removing valuables from your safety deposit box will impact your insurance premiums, it is best to contact your insurance company.  

How do I know how much coverage I need?

As is common practice with any valuables you wish to cover with your homeowner’s insurance, determining your coverage limit depends on the value of the items themselves. Gather or list the items that you plan to store inside the safety deposit box, then come up with a reasonable estimate of their combined value. If some or all of the items’ value can increase over time, such as gold, silver, etc., you also should take that into consideration when determining your estimate.

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

Shine Bright: 7 Tips for Keeping Your Jewelry Clean While in Storage

You may choose to put your jewelry in storage for different reasons. Maybe you don’t go out very often, maybe the jewelry is seasonal, or maybe it’s based on their value. The fact is, how you store your jewelry and where your store your jewelry is very dependent on the jewelry type. Some of the things you will have to consider will include metal type, storage containers, storage location, the temperature of the room, frequency of use, and cleaning opportunities.

Here are 7 tips to help with keeping your jewelry clean and maintaining its radiance during storage.

jewelries in a box 3

1. Jewelry Separation

This is probably the most obvious tip, yet it may also be the most common mistake people make when storing their jewelry. Before you even consider where and how you are going to store it, you should consider the material the jewelry is made of. Different metals require different storage plans, which is why throwing all your jewelry in one box is never a good idea, unless of course you have absolutely no diversity in your jewelry box and they are all the same material type.

The first simple step is to separate them by metal type. In other words, separate your silver jewelry, your gold jewelry, your stainless steel items, and also your fashion or costume jewelry. You can also choose to separate them even further based on value and frequency of wear. Value in this context mostly refers to monetary value, but sentiments can also play a part in your separation process as we go through the other steps. 

rings in pink container

2. Jewelry Style Types

You may not necessarily need to make this assessment, but it could come in handy especially if you are traveling or moving. Some types of jewelry are stored better in specific tailormade containers. For instance, a felt-lined ring box would be perfect to house rings for storage or traveling. You wouldn’t even need to separate the metal type, just ensure there is enough space between each ring in the ring mounds. These containers allow the rings to stand upright, wedged between two mounds of felt.

This limits their movements and chances of them rubbing on each other, which could cause scratching or tarnishing. This can also be true for necklaces, especially small linked chains, long chains, or chains with multiple pendants. Specific chain boxes allow them to hang separately, thus minimizing entanglement and dust collection. This allows them to maintain their cleanliness and shine for longer periods. 

3. Individual Storage Containers

Depending on the amount of jewelry you have and the number of metal types, you can opt to get a separate storage container for each set. However, each storage container should be lined with soft, dry, breathable fabric. This will help to reduce grime, dullness, and corrosion. If you have a lot of jewelry, or numerous jewelry types, finding a separate storage box for each set may prove to be tedious and can be cumbersome in storage. Too may containers may lead to space issues.

Another option would be to get one large storage box, but get individual jewelry bags for each set. This way, all the jewelry can be in one major container, but still be separated as per tip 1. Please note however, that these jewelry bags should be made from- or lined with felt or another tarnish-proof material. 

jewelries in white box

4. Clean Before You Store

This tip goes without saying, but a proper clean and polish will not only help to maintain the luster of your jewelry, but will also help to deter dust and grime from making a home on them. You should clean all jewelry that will be stored. Storing cleaned jewelry with dirty jewelry will only lead to a container filled with dirty jewelry when they come out of storage. It won’t be dirty in the sense that you can see dirt stuck in their crevices, or maybe you might, but they would at least start to tarnish and not look as vibrant as they once were. They can be cleaned with warm, mild, soapy water and a soft toothbrush for the little nooks and crannies. Once cleaned, they should be dried completely with a soft cloth or allowed to air dry then buffed with a soft cloth.

jewelries in pink box

5. Storage Location

Where you store your jewelry will play a part in how clean it looks when it is taken out of storage. Try to avoid open areas that are prone to dust. Even the tightest locked jewelry box will allow dust to eventually pass through its seams, so a low dust area is best. You may be tempted to put your jewelry in plastic bags to minimize dust particles, but this can be tricky as it may create humidity and moisture. You would have to ensure that the jewelry are first placed in a felt-lined container that can maintain its aridity before being placed into the plastic. This will prevent moisture from getting to the jewelry even if the bag starts to sweat.

jewelries in black box

6. Temperature

Another consideration that may not have crossed your mind is temperature. High temperature leads to sweating and moisture on certain materials, which can lead to dullness and a build-up of grime on your jewelry. Avoid storing your jewelry in areas where it may be in the path of direct sunlight or a heating vent. This is important especially if long term storage is being considered. Therefore, your attic and your basement may not be your best bet. However, if any of those rooms happen to be temperature regulated, then it could be a viable option. 

7. Length of Storage

Deciding how long to store your jewelry may not be within your control, but the aim is to get at the jewelry at set intervals just to give them a good buffing to maintain their luster. Also, the prospective length of storage can help in determining which container storage option would be best for your jewelry type. For instance, if your jewelry is not going to be in storage for very long, you can be a little more flexible with where and how you store them. This means that you may have more frequent opportunities to take them out and buff them between deep cleans, which will help them to remain cleaner for a longer period.

However, if your jewelry is only worn at specific times like costume jewelry you wear at Halloween or fine jewelry that you only wear to weddings and fancy dinners, you can consider a more long-term storage option. This could be a vault for your fine valuables or a storage container in your closet for your costume jewelry.

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

Connoisseur Level: 9 Tips On How To Start An Art Collection

When you hear the term collector, you may think of persons who collect coins, stamps, or sports memorabilia, but people also collect art. Art collection can involve any form of art, but is most often directed to wall paintings, photos, and other forms of wall art rather than sculptures. If you are interested in compiling your own art collection, here are 9 tips to help you to get started.

paintings on the street

1. Find Your Niche

This may be an obvious first step, but it isn’t always easy. Unless you are extremely wealthy, starting a collection can be expensive if you decide to try a little of everything. The best move is to find a category that speaks to you, and then build on it or narrow it down (depending on how you look at it). You can choose your art collection by your favorite artists, era, painting versus photos, material type, region, etc. What you fancy is ultimately up to you, but it’s ideal to have a basic idea of what you are looking for before you start looking. This way, you can focus your search and procurement efforts on getting exactly what appeals to you and spend less time checking out every piece of canvas that calls itself art. You can decide which galleries and art shows to visit based on the niche that you have selected. 

wall paintings with a girl standing

2. Create a Procurement Plan

Not all art is collected the exact same way. The basic concept is to purchase it, but finding it may utilize different processes depending on what you are looking for. For instance, if you are into contemporary art and your artist is alive and still producing, they will most likely have a social media presence or a website. This makes it a bit easier to follow their work and procure their art. However, searching for vintage art pieces may take a bit more finesse. There are websites that focus purely on art and can be a good place to start, but you can also get rare finds from long-established galleries and general eCommerce websites like eBay and Etsy. The problem is figuring our which sellers to trust, so research is essential.

abstract painting 2

3. Conduct Proper Research

Research will always be a necessary part of any collection process regardless of the item or reason. The fact is, you need to know what to buy and where to get it. If you are collecting for the purpose of investment, you will have to treat it a little like Forex trading where you look at past trends and then try to predict future values. You can look for older, more established artists with a good sales track record, or you can try to find an upcoming artist with tremendous potential. A new artist can be a risky investment, but it can also be rewarding if the artist’s work becomes extremely popular and valuable over time and you have an early, original piece. If you are simply in it to decorate your personal space with beautiful pieces of art, your research may stop at finding a gallery or filter-ready online store which houses a categorized plethora of art.

abstract painting

4. Aesthetics vs. Value

As with any collection, you may choose to do it simply because you love the items you collect, because you know it will be a sound investment, or because you hope to benefit from both reasons. With art especially, the reason for your collection will play a part in which pieces you collect. If the aim is solely for investment, you should conduct extensive research before you make a purchase. If it is just for aesthetics, then it’s almost as simple as finding pieces that you like to look at. How much you spend on art will vary based on your personal taste and affordability, as opposed to investments where you will have to weigh your financial standing against the potential gain.

wall painting

5. Organize Your Display Space

While art can be treated like any other collection, it is a little more demanding in terms of display. It’s art, it’s main purpose is to be admired. Therefore, before you start an art collection, you need to organize a space to store or display it. It is not just about the location, but also the size of the dedicated area. This will help you to decide how many pieces you can effectively collect to display and/or store. Space consideration is important to avoid hoarding and to facilitate proper placement.

6. Redecorate

You are probably wondering why this step is even included. The fact is, collectors tend to go a little overboard even when they have already organized their space. So you may find yourself with a few more pieces than you can effectively display, or find that some pieces start to lose their appeal after a while. You can either choose to sell them and hope that you made the right choice, or take them down and put up a few new ones. You can change them around annually, by season, or whenever you feel like a new perspective is needed. Either way, redecorating from time to time can help with keeping your eye and mind focused on your niche and reconfirm your preferences.

wall paintings with a boy standing

7. Make the Purchase

You have picked your niche, organized your space, and done your research. The next step is to simply purchase the item. If you like it a lot and can afford it, buy it. Overthinking will lead to hesitation and possibly regret if you miss out on a piece. After you purchase your first piece, you will most likely know if continuing with that particular niche is the right choice for you.

abstract painting 3

8. Display vs. Storage

This is an important step. As stated in step 5, art likes to be admired. However, if the main purpose of your collection is an investment, you may not want to display all pieces, all the time,  and proper storage should be your next consideration. If you choose to display a value piece, you have to consider proper framing, coverage, and security. If you choose storage, you still have to consider the storage packaging and location to avoid spoiling the piece. 


9. To Insure or Not to Insure

Getting insurance is an option to be considered based on a few factors. Are you housing valuable pieces, does your home insurance cover it, and is additional insurance necessary? If your collection is valuable in sentiments and not dollars, you will still want to protect it, but probably not fork out extra dollars for insurance. You should check to see if they are covered under your home insurance. If your collection is extremely valuable in terms of actual money, you may want to get the items appraised an then get them insured separately.

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.

A Handy Guide to Collecting Vintage Sports Memorabilia

If you perform a search for the term “collector,” most results will simply state that a collector is someone who collects things. While this is true, the statement itself is a bit reductive because a true collector does more than simply “collects things.” Some people engage in collecting as a hobby, others view collecting as an investment, and there are those who see an endless possibility in doing it for both reasons. 

Whether you are already an avid collector or thinking of becoming one, deciding what to collect and how to store it is an integral part of the aggregating process. Here are several tips to consider when collecting and storing sports vintage memorabilia.

sports memorabilia 5

Your Vintage Sports Memorabilia Collection

Establish a Niche – Try to focus your collection on one set, or group of items. For instance, select a sport that you like to play or watch. You can then further pinpoint a collections group by focusing on a team or player. This will allow you to complete a collection more quickly, thus increasing its value and your gratification. You will also prevent overspending as it would definitely be more costly and/or frustrating in attempting to complete multiple collectible sets simultaneously. 

Collecting vs. Hoarding – Some persons confuse collecting with hoarding. The truth is, it’s easy to get carried away when you find something that you are truly interested in. To prevent yourself from crossing that thin line from collector to hoarder, ensure to organize a dedicated storage space for your collectibles. Stick to your niche and only utilize your dedicated space. If you find that you are running out of space, it’s probably time to start pruning. 

Organize – Developing and organizational process serves multiple purposes. Aside from being aesthetically pleasing, a well-organized set of memorabilia makes it easy to see if there are any missing pieces or duplicates. This will make purchasing and pruning simpler. 

Check for Authenticity – It goes without saying that you should ensure the item you are purchasing is authentic. But how can you be sure? The best way to ensure your vintage sports memorabilia is authentic is to purchase from reputable retailers or try purchasing from the sports organizations directly. The NFL, MLB, NBA, NASCAR, FIFA, and other majors organizations will provide authentic merchandise. However, it can often be less expensive to purchase from eBay, dedicated collectible websites, or a fellow collector who has a duplicate. The good news is, even if you purchase from one of these alternatives, you can still ask the seller to furnish a certificate of authenticity from the Memorabilia Evaluation and Research Services (MEARS) or the Professional Sports Authenticators (PSA). This will confirm that you are getting what you pay for. 

Value – Value doesn’t necessarily mean “value for money.” In this case it can also refer to the value that the item holds for you personally. Of course, if you are collecting for the purpose of investing, you will need to check the current monetary value of the item and the projected monetary value. This will help you to decide how to select one memorabilia over another and know when to let go of a specific item in order to get a more lucrative one. On the other hand, the value may refer to the sense of fulfillment that you get from the item. It could be an item that preserves a memory or signifies an achievement. Either way, a collectible shouldn’t be in your set just because it was available, it should have a direct significance to the rest of your collection, thus adding to the collection’s overall value.

Storing your Sports Memorabilia

Types of  Material – The material that makes up the main component of your sports memorabilia will help to determine where and how it is stored. Some materials will hold up fine regardless of where you keep it, while others do not do well in areas where temperatures can go above or below certain degrees. For instance, if your vintage collectible is largely paper-based, such as unlaminated sports cards, pictures, sports magazines, or cardboard cut-outs, you may want to avoid placing them in plastic bags or containers which could sweat if the temperature fluctuates to any extensive degree. You should also try to avoid newspaper where possible. While newspaper is generally abundant and useful in storing items, it has ink that may bleed onto other surfaces, especially if it becomes humid. This could lead to permanent damage and a decrease in value. 

Location, Location, Location – This may be an obvious one, but there are so many things to consider when selecting a location for your collectibles. The main consideration for most collectors is display. They want to know the best place with the best view and the best lighting, and that is perfectly understandable. You want to share your collection with friends and admirers, at a safe no-touch distance of course. However, you must also consider the temperature and humidity of your storage area. Another factor that is sometimes overlooked is how much direct sunlight is shone on the items being displayed. While your card, ball, or T-shirt may gleam and look glorious in the sunlight, you may be slowly causing irreparable damage that may only become visible when it’s already too late. You may not notice the fade in color on your card or shirt, or the small cracks in your ball or plaque until you can no longer do anything about it. If you wish to have your sports memorabilia shine in all its glory, you can choose to give it a dedicated spot with a dedicated light source other than the sun. LED lights staged around the perimeter of a display glass box may do the trick, but even then, it’s best to turn the lights off when it’s not being actively viewed.
Other places to avoid are small rooms with fireplaces that may become too warm, or non-insulated places that may become too cold. Of course, this is all dependent on your overall location and its weather patterns. However, you may want to avoid attics and basements in general.

To Clean or Not to Clean? – This is a question of whether your collectibles are on display or not, and the type of materials they are made from. Obviously, if your collectibles are wrapped properly in a suitable storage material and kept away from humidity, cleaning is probably not necessary. However, if your vintage sports collectible is on glorious display, at some point it may become dusty and needs to be cleaned. It may be difficult but try to resist a clean sweep with your hands, especially on photographs and other paper-based materials. The fact is, our fingers have oils that may help to break down the material over time and shorten its lifespan. If you notice that a certain item needs cleaning, get a pair of gloves and a soft dust cloth or soft bristle brush to gently dust the surface. If the item is made from plastic and requires a slightly deeper clean, you can use a Q-tip with a little alcohol or distilled water. Try to avoid areas with external printed ink just to be safe. 

Insurance – This final tip is not so much about collecting and storing your sports memorabilia, but more about preservation. As with any asset, you are going to want to protect the time, effort, and money you have already invested in it. Therefore, you should ensure that your collection is insured. Some collectibles are already insured within your home-owners insurance, but if your collection has a high monetary value, you should consider a dedicated insurance policy just for them.

Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States
Safe Deposit Center | 12000 NE 8th Street Ste 100 Bellevue, Washington 98005 United States

If you are looking for a secure place to store your hard drives or other valuables, Safe Deposit Center can help. At Safe Deposit Center, we offer a variety of safe deposit box sizes as well as open vault storage to accommodate your secure storage needs. For more information about our secure, private storage facility please visit https://safedepositcenterwa.com/.