Tips for What to Save in Your Safe

What do a hand grenade, a mugshot and a turkey wishbone all have in common? According to a survey by First Alert, these are among the items you might find inside your neighbor’s safe. Recently, we asked 1,000 Americans what they would store in a safe if they had one. And some of the answers were pretty intriguing:

  • Cabbage Patch doll birth certificate
  • Cigarette pack (“So I can’t get to them”)
  • Cancelled checks to family members
  • Stepson’s mother arrest pictures

Clearly, the responses were as varied as Americans themselves. But if you aren’t one of the few looking to hold onto Cabbage Patch dolls, mug shots or cancelled checks, what should you actually store in a safe?

Here’s my list of the top three items you should consider protecting with a safe:

Mortgage papers: These could be essential to rebuilding after a fire or natural disaster – store these important documents in a waterproof and fireproof safe to ensure protection.

Tax documents: The IRS could ask for records that are years old, and recommends keeping tax return documents for up to seven years. Use a security chest to store your files, and keep them organized.

Passports and birth certificates: A home gets broken into every 14 seconds, according to FBI statistics. Avoid being the victim of identity theft by storing these items in a cash box.

Getting a safe is a simple way to protect personal belongings and make your home a safer place. Safeguard those important documents, family heirlooms and passports, and, who knows, maybe you’ll even throw in a wishbone next Thanksgiving!

Tell us, what’s in your safe?

Debbie Hanson is director of external affairs for First Alert, a trusted brand in home safety products.