I was thinking about getting a safe deposit box the other day, and wanted to share with you some of my thoughts about it. I like the idea of having a secure box somewhere outside my home. I consider it a back-up in case something should happen (like a fire). I also like the idea of it being secure.
Here are some pros and cons I’ve been putting together, and I’d love your final thoughts at the end.
Benefits of a Safe Deposit Box
The biggest benefit of a safe deposit box is that it is secure. It is probably one of the securest places an individual of the public can store something. Beyond that, it is also not in your house. By being in a secondary location, it minimizes some risks, like fire.
Some things I would consider storing in the safe deposit box include:
- Rare Coins
- Irreplaceable Documents (including old family photos)
- Stock Certificates
- Insurance Policies
Cons of a Safe Deposit Box
The biggest con of a safe deposit box is the hassle of going to the box to get whatever I need. The nice part is that whatever I store there will be needed very rarely. I would also have to go during bank hours, which could be hard if I was working.
A second concern is the annual cost, but like I mentioned above, it is only $35 per year. If I did buy a safe, it would take about 15 years to break even to the cost of the safe deposit box, and if I ever moved, I would have to pay to have the safe moved as well.
A big consideration to me is who has access to the box, both currently and if I die. I would need to make my wife a co-renter, because that would give her access anytime. If I died, the bank cannot allow anyone access without a judge’s order. The exception is a co-renter, which my wife would be.
This is important because if I did have important papers in there (such as a will), it could be difficult and expensive to gain access (judges and lawyers would be needed). I would need to make sure I took steps to make it easy on everyone.
Readers, what are your thoughts? Do I get a safe deposit box or not?
Robert Farrington is America’s Millennial Money Expert® and America’s Student Loan Debt Expert™, and the founder of The College Investor, a personal finance site dedicated to helping millennials escape student loan debt to start investing and building wealth for the future. You can learn more about him here.
He regularly writes about investing, student loan debt, and general personal finance topics geared towards anyone wanting to earn more, get out of debt, and start building wealth for the future.
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