Buying a home safe is a major decision for every household. You don’t simply buy a safe for the sake of having one. Vaults are made to keep valuable items and documents protected from damage and theft. It would serve as your last line of defense after the dogs, home alarms, CCTV cameras, and other security measures.
Choosing a safe is not too complicated. But, it doesn’t mean that you can just pick any expensive vault in the market. It’s easy to get carried away when choosing a safe so it’s better to fully understand how they work and how this storage item can help protect your items from unauthorized access. So, let’s go into details!
The Importance of Having a Home Safe
Before you go out and run to a store to buy a safe, it’s better to know if you can benefit from it. Home vaults are a bit expensive so you need to be 100% certain that you need them for your house. If you are still hesitant, here are a few benefits that home vaults can offer.
Protect your Important Items from Fire and Theft
Modern home storages are equipped with safety features that would prevent burglars from accessing your valuable items. They are not foot-proof, but the thieves will spend a lot of time trying to open a high-quality vault.
Most of these safes are also fire and water-resistant. In case of fire, these vaults are capable of protecting your valuable items. All your documents and other items will be protected for up to two hours. The safe will maintain a low temperature inside. It is enough to prevent papers and documents from burning.
Peace of Mind when You’re Out of Town
You can’t bring your valuable items with you when you need to go out of town. If you have vacation plans with your family, it won’t be a good idea to bring important documents and jewelry. The chances of misplacing them or being stolen are higher if you always bring these items with you.
With a home vault, you won’t have to worry about your important items and documents. Make sure that the safe is hidden so the burglars will have a hard time looking for it.
Protects your Items from People Working in your House
If you have maids or nannies working in your house, you need to make sure that all your items are stored and hidden. A lot of burglaries usually start inside the house. Even if you trust the people working inside your house, you still need to be cautious. Getting a safe would prevent these people from accessing your valuable items.
Store Anything you Want
There are different types of vaults and they offer protection to different types of items as well. You can store your guns, jewelry, money, important documents, electronic devices, and more. As long as you know the type of safe that you need, you can keep all the items that you want. A detailed explanation of the different types of vaults would be discussed further below.
Pay attention to the size of the vault because they come in different shapes and dimensions. You need to read the features of the vault as well because they have different uses. Some safes are made for electronic devices and some are made for firearms.
Keep Firearms Away from Children
It’s normal for a household to have firearms. As long as it’s licensed, you are allowed to keep guns inside your house for protection. But, if you have kids, you need to make sure that these dangerous items are inaccessible to them.
A gun safe will safely store your firearms and prevent your children from accidentally using them. One of its best features is easy to access for authorized people. It means that if you need to use your guns during an emergency, a gun vault will allow you to use your gun without any hassle.
How to Choose a Safe for your Home
Knowing the benefits of a home vault is a part of the decision-making process. Most of the safes right now come with a wide range of advanced features. Even the most inexpensive models have a lot of new functions for better security. If you want to look for the best vault in the market, here are some of the factors that you need to consider.
1. The Size of the Safe
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to safes. They come in different sizes and shapes and it would depend on the type of items that you plan to put inside. When choosing a size, make sure that you consider the items that you will put inside right now and the items that you might keep inside the vault in the future.
Most of you might say that a smaller safe is a better choice since you can move it around easily and it doesn’t take too much space. But, there are a few things that you should keep in mind before you decide to choose a smaller one.
- Once you start using a safe, you will realize that it is very useful so you will end up storing a lot of things inside. Because of this, you will soon want an upgrade. It would be a waste of money to buy a small safe so the best choice would be a medium or large-sized vault.
- Before buying a safe, you should measure the opening. You might store items that cannot be folded so it’s better if the entrance is big enough for larger things.
- Bigger vaults are harder to steal compared to smaller ones. The burglars can take the small safe and open it once they’re out of the house. A bigger one is heavier and you can even bolt them on the floor or wall.
2. The Best Lock for your Safe
One of the biggest decisions that you will make when buying a safe is the locking mechanism. Yes, most safes don’t have multiple locks. It means that you will have to choose a specific lock depending on the type of security that you need. Take note that some models offer one to two locking mechanisms. But, they are very expensive.
Before you choose a safe, here are the different types of locks that you can consider.
This is the most common type of lock used in a vault. Basically, you need a key to open the safe and access the items inside. There are a few pros and cons when it comes to this type of lock.
One of the best things about mechanical locks is their humidity resistance. You don’t need to worry about where to place the safe because you do not have to check the humidity level of the area. You can even put it inside a wet room. Even if you put a mechanical safe in a wet or cold environment, it will still work properly.
If there is more than one user of the safe, you need to get a duplicate of the key. Also, this type of lock is more susceptible to theft. Most burglars are now fully equipped and trained to handle simple mechanical locks. They can unlock this in just a few seconds.
Electronic locks are more popular right now because it provides decent security and it’s not too expensive. Most people would prefer to unlock a safe through code instead of using a key.
Compared to a mechanical lock, you don’t need to duplicate your key. You just need to remember the code and share it with other users. More advanced electronic locks allow you to create multiple codes. This would allow you to give different passwords to the users.
You don’t have any physical keys to open the safe. You need to remember the combination to open it. If you forgot the password, you will have to go through a lot of trouble trying to fix it.
An electronic safe would be damaged easily if you keep it in a wet room. Humidity can cause damage to electrical items. Another concern would be the battery. Forgetting to recharge the battery will result in a lockout. Although it is very easy to replace one, it won’t be a pleasant experience if you need to access something right away.
With the current technology, burglars can now open an electronic safe within a few seconds. If it is the only locking mechanism on the vault, they can take your valuable items with ease.
This is the most popular type of locking mechanism for safes. This is very useful, especially for gun safes. You don’t need to remember any codes and you don’t need to bring a physical key.
A fingerprint lock is the best choice for multiple users. More advanced models allow you to store multiple fingerprints. If you want 2 or more people to access your safe, you just need to record their biometrics. As long as you have your finger with you, the safe can be opened anytime you want without keys or codes.
When it comes to biometric locks, it’s not a good idea to buy cheap vaults. More affordable options usually have a low-quality biometric reader. It means that there is a chance that the safe will not be able to recognize you as the owner. There are even cases where a random person managed to open a biometric safe. It’s very rare, but errors like this happen on fingerprint locks.
3. Different Types of Home Vaults
Home vaults can be divided into four major categories. Every type has its strong points and they differ mainly on the type of security they provide.
Fire Resistant Safes
This type of safe is made primarily to protect important documents against fire. There are a lot of documents and papers that you need to keep inside a fire-resistant safe to make sure that it will not turn to ash in case of fire.
But, this type of safe is not as secure as the other types. It doesn’t provide complete protection against burglary since it is focused mainly on fire protection. Also, only top-quality safes can withstand major fires. If you are using a cheap brand and it is damaged by fire, don’t expect your documents to still be intact.
This vault is made from solid steel and it is heavier compared to others. The main purpose of this safe is to prevent unauthorized entry. Compared with fire-resistant storage, this type of vault is fireproof, which is capable of withstanding major fires for up to 2 hours. You can even check the fire rating before you buy one.
There are two main types of burglary safes:
- Wall safe: This is one of the best choices if you want to hide the vault in plain sight. It is usually very small so it’s very easy to install on the wall. You can put your jewelry, cash, or even important documents if you want. It is connected to a stud and it is fixed on the wall so once installed, you will have a hard time removing it.
- Standalone vaults: This type of storage space is made from steel and it comes with different locking mechanisms. You can mount them on the surface to prevent burglars or thieves from accessing its contents. You can also move it anywhere you want.
This kind of safe is made primarily for firearms. This is a storage for your guns if you want to keep them away from your kids. It is also a good way to conceal your firearms and access them anytime if a burglar is in the house.
They also come in different sizes. If you have bigger guns like rifles, you can get a bigger one. For handguns, they are smaller and more compact. The best thing about vaults for handguns is their flexibility. Most of these safes allow you to have easy access to your guns during emergencies. You just need to swipe your fingerprints and the gun vault will open immediately.
If you need a storage space that can protect your jewelry, this is the best choice. They have delicate interiors and they even have small drawers for your precious jewelry. The outside part of the vault is very tough. They are made from solid steel and they come with advanced locking mechanisms.
4. Portable or Not?
Portable safes are very convenient. You can bring it with you if you want or you can regularly change its location. You can keep it inside your cabinet or just hide it under your bed.
On the other hand, standalone vaults are usually bigger and heavier. This is to make sure that the burglars won’t be able to carry it away. They are bolted on the ground or the wall to provide more security.
You can either go for a portable or a standalone vault depending on your preference. If you don’t need a lot of storage, a portable safe will be a great choice. If you have a lot of things that you want to put inside your storage, you should opt for a standalone safe.
Safes should never be cheap. If you are on a tight budget, it’s better to just save it up until you can buy a high-quality brand. There are so many reasons why it is not a good idea to buy a cheap safe.
- Cheap safes are very lightweight, which means that the steel used to manufacture them is not thick. The hinges will surely fail and burglars can easily open them. Because the steel is very thin, it would be very easy for the Burglars to drill and open it forcefully.
- Cheaper vaults usually have cheap locking mechanisms. This is a fact that you need to understand because you may end up regretting the storage space that you bought. If the locks are low quality, you can expect that both you and the burglars will have a hard time opening them.
- You need a safe that can last for a very long time. Since this is a bit expensive, it is always better to choose a safe that is strong enough to withstand the test of time.
How to Keep your Home Safe Secure
Your home vault can keep your important items secure. But, you also need to make sure that they are protected. You have to remember that these items are not foolproof. Given more time, burglars can open the safe and get all the important items inside. To keep your home vaults secure, here are a few tips that you can follow.
Keep your Safe Hidden
No matter what type of safe you are using, make sure that you keep them all hidden from plain sight. This is perfect for gun vaults because they are very dangerous.
You probably want the gun safe to be accessible all the time. However, it won’t be a good idea to just leave it out in the open, especially if you have a lot of important items. Here are a few reasons why you need to hide your gun vault.
- Burglars are very unpredictable. At first, they only want to rob you, but if they have a chance, they would do other things that may harm your family. It is better to keep your vault hidden so they won’t be able to use anything against you.
- You have to make sure that the thieves have no idea you have guns in your house. They will try to find all sorts of information about you before they start their operation. As long as you don’t show your guns around, they won’t know that you have one.
- If you have kids in the house, it is better for your gun safe to be hidden from them. There are instances when the biometric scanners become faulty, especially if you’re using a cheap vault. Your children might accidentally open the safe.
Gun safes can be hidden on the floorboard or you can hide it on your drawers. The best gun safe should always be very close to your bed. In case of emergencies, you can swipe your finger from the biometric scanner and the vault will automatically open.
Install your Safe in the Wall
One way to strengthen your safe is to attach it to the wall. Well, it is not a good idea to attach the safe to the floor as it may damage your flooring. You can install the safe directly on the wall and cover it with a picture frame or you can make a hole inside your closet to keep it hidden.
When you are looking for a place to install the safe, make sure that you avoid places with too much humidity. It can damage the items inside your safe.
Make your Safe Heavy
The best way to prevent the burglars from getting your safe is to make it extremely heavy. This would take them a lot of time to move it from one place to another. If you want to make it heavier, here are a few tricks that you can follow:
- Use sandbags and put them at the bottom part of the vault
- You can also use lead bars to improve the weight of the safe.
- You can pour concrete inside to make it look heavier.
- Attach the vault to other heavy items inside the house.
Buying ahome safe is more complicated than you think. You should always get it right the first time you buy it because it is very expensive. With all the tips and tricks mentioned above, it would be a lot easier for you to get a new safe for your home.
You should start looking for the best home safes and protect your items immediately.