There are numerous measures you can take to secure your home against intruders; but in the unlikely event that a clever burglar gains entry to your home, you’ll want to have a few safeguards in place.
Even if a breakin seems unlikely, there are other reasons to ensure that your valuables are tucked away in a secure space. Do you entertain frequently, or have rambunctious young children running around the house? You wouldn’t want an accidental red wine spill to ruin your family’s social security cards; nor would you want a mischievous child to tamper with your passport.
Whether you’re worried about robbers, fires, floods, or your own unruly toddler, these are our top tips for in-home security.
Step 1: Before you can decide on a safe, you have to determine what’s going inside of it! Your grandmother’s heirloom necklace and rare collector’s baseball cards are probably going to be safer in a deposit box at a bank than at home. However, if you’re looking to store Social Security cards, birth certificates, and other important documents, an at-home safe is a relatively inexpensive solution for keeping those documents secure.
Step 2: Choose a size. Depending on what’s going inside, you can opt for a smaller or a larger safe. If you’re just looking to protect a box of antique family photos, for example, a small 1.2-1.3 cubic foot safe should be just fine.
Step 3: What are you protecting against? Fire is the number one concern of homeowners, according to Consumer Reports. If this is your main concern, select a safe that’s heatproof: if you only have papers in the safe, you’ll want to get one that stays under 350 degrees. If you have electronics, the safe shouldn’t exceed 150 degrees. On the other hand, a heavy-duty safe may not be necessary to deter petty thieves: most safes can withstand a 15-minute attack with common tools, and the majority of burglars break into homes, grab what they see, and jet out as quickly as possible.
Safes measuring 1.2-1.3 cubic feet range in cost from $50 to $1,000. Smaller safes are cheaper, and SafeSentry, Honeywell, and First Alert all make safes of varying sizes and price points. However, these safes won’t keep any determined burglar out, which is why I recommend Gardall and Amsec, which are pricier but can stand up to any attempted break-in much better. These run from around $200 to over $1,000, depending on size, type of safe, and type of lock. While this may seem pretty steep, if what you’re protecting costs more than $1,000 it’s definitely worth investing in a sturdy and well-made safe.
To keep your safe out of the hands of intruders, we recommend bolting it to the floor. The best surface for this is concrete, but you can also do it with wood floors. To minimize floor damage and maximize security, Lockbusters can do a home visit and ensure your safe is securely installed. If you live in an apartment where you can’t drill into the floor, we recommend purchasing a steel slab that’s wider than your door frame and attaching the safe to that.
If you’re still worried about your home’s safety, or are concerned about installing a safe, give NYC’s top-rated locksmith a call. We’re open 24/7, and your safety is our highest priority.