Are you considering getting a safety deposit box for your valuables and important papers? A safety deposit box (or safe deposit box) is a great way of protecting important non-replaceable items that you’d rather not lose.
Bank safety deposit boxes are fireproof metal boxes that are fitted with two separately keyed locks. Getting into these safe deposit boxes isn’t at all easy, which probably contributes to their popularity as a place to store things. For one thing, the boxes are kept in a vault towards the rear of the bank and require an identification check before the area can be accessed. And once in the vault, the safety deposit box can only be opened with the two keys. One of the keys is kept at the bank; the second key is your own personal key which you have to bring from home. With all these safeguards, it’s no big surprise why people prefer using safety deposit boxes for protecting their valuables.
If you are in interested in renting a safety deposit box, these FAQs will help you make up your mind.
1. How much does it cost?
Rental rates depend on the size of the box and the number of boxes available at a given bank’s location. The smallest size safety deposit boxes start as low as $15-$25 a year. Large size boxes range form $185 to $500. Bank customers with preferred accounts may be entitled to free rental.
2. What size do the boxes come in?.
Safety deposit boxes come in three sizes ~ small, medium, and large.
* Small boxes are about 2 x 5 x 12 inches long. This is to size of safe deposit I have, and it’s been more than enough to hold important papers and jewelry.
* Medium boxes measure 4 x 10 x 12 inches long, and are designed to hold larger items or multiple deeds, contracts, etc.
* Large boxes measure 15 x 22 x 22 and are designed to hold jewelry boxes, lots of precious metals, cash, collectibles, securities, and other bulky valuables.
3. What do I keep in my safety deposit box?
It’s really up to you. the rule of thumb I follow is, “Can it be easily replaced?” If the answer is no, then off to the safety deposit box it goes. Items to store in a safe deposit box might include:
* Property deeds, insurance policies
* Car registration
* Original birth certificates, baptism certifications, marriage certificates, divorce papers, military records, passport, and social security cards etc.
* Copies (not originals) of legal contracts and powers of attorney
* Stocks, bonds, other securities
* Credit card numbers and unused credit cards
* Jewelry, coins, and other collectibles.
4. Who can get into my safety deposit box?
Unless you own the box jointly, the answer is “no one.” While this is great for security, it’s not so hot when you die since it means that the safety deposit box will be “locked down” until the executor can get an court order to have it opened. For this reason, a safe deposit box is not the place to store documents like wills & testaments, living wills, and burial instructions or a stack of burial cash.
When it comes to safeguarding your valuables, a safety deposit box really is an fantastic option for those concerned about security. It also provides you with the peace of mind in knowing that your hard-to-replace items are safe under lock & key, which is worth any price.
Related articles by C. Jeanne include
How to keep your money and finances safe on vacation