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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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/.