How to choose a Safe

An example of a home safe - B&D Safe Opening, London offering advice on choosing a safe.The following guide has been compiled in order to assist any individual or business in their search for a suitable safe. By no means is this an exhaustive list, however all the information listed below will certainly help in purchasing the correct secure storage solution. It is always advisable to check your insurance policy details in addition to researching the product you intend to buy, to ensure that adequate coverage is in place should the worst happen.

What do you want to protect?

This will help you to determine how big you need the safe to be. If personal jewellery will be the main contents kept in the safe then obviously a room height model would be an unnecessary expense!

Cash rating and Insurance details.

Put simply, the cash rating of a safe is an indication of how secure that particular safe is. So for example a safe with a cash rating of £1,000 can be deemed less secure than a safe with a cash rating of £10,000. The cash rating is also a guide to how many valuables should be stored inside. The overall value of non cash items will total 10 times the cash rating. The cash rating also indicates how much the contents of the safe are insured for over night – so the higher the cash rating the greater the insurance cover.

Do you require the safe to be fireproof?

Fire safes protect important valuables and documents from fire damage. By maintaining the inside temperature at a cool enough level to preserve your content for a set time specified for each individual unit, a fire safe can prove invaluable for precious items. Items that are often kept in a fire safe include :

  • Passports
  • Copy of your Will
  • Birth Certificates
  • Photographs
  • Memory sticks
  • CDs

Will the safe be bolted to a wall or floor, or not bolted in place at all?

When considering a safe to be bolted to the floor you need to survey where you are planning to install it. Is the floor concrete or wooden? Will the safe be out of sight? A concrete floor is the ideal base, however wooden floors can also be secure if the safe is drilled to the joists of the floor. It is worth mentioning that if there is underfloor heating in your home/place of work then the safe will NOT be drilled to the floor. An adhesive alternative must be used, or opt for a wall bolted unit instead. As for the floor bolted safe, a firm fixing is required in order to secure your chosen safe to the wall. B&D Safe Opening are happy to assess which option is best for your property, so please do not hesitate to call us. If opting for a portable safe, an important consideration before investing in a certain model is – Can everyone in the home/place of work pick it up in an emergency?

Do you want a key or combination lock on the safe?

If choosing the safe for home, it may be an idea to choose a combination or digital lock option. Keys can get mislaid over time and a safe combination can always be kept a note of – in an alternative safe place away from your home safe of course!

Extra precautionary tips

It might sound obvious but on the day you buy and install your safe, ensure you dispose of all the packaging discreetly. You don’t want to advertise to potential burglars that your home/business premises contains items valuable enough to warrant a safe!


With thanks for the photo of the home safe Tom Varco under the Creative Commons license.


About the Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *