As more and more banks digitalize their services, it’s easy to see why safe deposit boxes may seem old and outdated. However, for many, it’s still their go-to way when it comes to storing valuables, documents and other objects that are important to them.
Safe deposits boxes are secured bins located in bank vaults that one can rent for a fee. Upon rental of a safe deposit box, customers receive a unique key that they can pair with a second “guard” key. When combined, these keys provide access to the contexts of the box. Some more advanced keyless systems (such as finger or hand scanning) allow for more security.
It is no secret that safe deposit boxes are falling out of fashion, especially among younger customers. Most younger customers prefer digital storage over traditional storage methods. If you used to store the right things, safe boxes can, however, prove very useful.
What are some good things to keep in a safe box?
Safe boxes are objectively the best way to keep paper documents safe and secure. They are perfect for those documents that you don’t need to carry around with you all the time but are super-important all the same (think birth certificates). They are also ideal for storing documents that are not—or have yet not been—digitalized.
They are, however, not ideal when it comes to items that you might require on short notice, such as passports and other important travel documents.
Avoid storing cash in your safe deposit box.
Make sure that you seal your documents and valuables in safe containers.
Here are some frequently asked questions regarding safe deposit boxes:
- How much can I expect to pay for a safe deposit box?
Not too much, as prices have gone down. Generally, you should expect to pay anything from $20 to $200 a year. It all depends on the size of your box.
- How does insurance of valuables and documents work?
Well, the truth is that most banks will not cover the contents of your box. If you are planning on safekeeping jewelry or other valuables, separate insurance, and insurance packages do exist. It usually costs less to cover items secured in safe boxes.
- Is the safe deposit box fee deductible?
It used to be, but unfortunately, it’s not anymore. Due to last year’s changes in taxation, it’s no longer possible to deduct the fee on your federal tax return.