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3 Items Not to Keep in a Safety Deposit Box for Water/Fire Damage

Almost everything important in our modern world is virtually stored “in the cloud.” Therefore, safety deposit boxes might seem like relics from our past. You shouldn’t, however, be so quick to dismiss them.  In the case of a fire, serious storm, or water damage, you will want to be sure you have a place where your most valuable (or priceless) possessions are stored away from harm. Safety deposit boxes are the perfect tool for this. Mr. Restore suggests that all Texas residents keep one to protect important documents and other possessions.

Safety deposit boxes are not the best choice for everything, though. With the help of experts, we have come up with a list of three items you shouldn’t store in your bank in the event of fire or water damage. Keep in mind that in order to access your safety deposit box, you will need to go to the bank when they are open. Most banks are not opened on:

  • Nights
  • Holidays
  • Weekends

If you’re worried about the limited access to your safety deposit box, you can store important items in a fireproof home safe. Most safes are not damaged by water or fire and you will have access to it whenever you’d like. This includes anything you need frequent access to or might need on short notice.

There are many valuables and important items that can keep in your safe or deposit box, including:

  • State and Federal Documents (passport, birth certificate, social security cards, ect..)
  • Jewelry and other valuables
  • Priceless photos and other memorabilia

While you can put anything you’d like in a safety deposit box, there are the 3 main things you shouldn’t store in them:


There are multiple reasons to not keep cash stashed away in a safety deposit box. If there is an emergency at the bank, like a fire or flood, the bank will be closed and you will not be able to access your items. Keep in mind that here in Texas, we are no stranger to tornados and serious storms. If the entire town suffers from serious damage, the bank will be closed and you will not be able to retrieve your physical money.  If the money were in a bank account, you would have 24/7 access.

There are three additional reasons to avoid storing cash in a safety deposit box. Reason one, cash loses value over time due to inflation. An interest-bearing account or certificate of deposit is a better option for the cash. Reason two, keeping cash in a safe deposit box is against the rules at some banks. Reason three, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation doesn’t protect cash in a safe deposit box.

Spare Keys

It is also a bad idea to keep a spare house key in a safe deposit box. You can only get into your safe deposit box when the bank is open, and you have the key on you. Most people tend to keep their safe deposit box key hidden somewhere safe inside their house. But in a water or fire emergency, you may not be able to safely get inside your house. You can easily save yourself some frustration and leave the spare key with a nearby friend or relative.

Insurance Policy

It’s okay to keep a copy of your insurance policy in your safety deposit box, but you need to have additional copies in case you need access when the bank is closed. Keep in mind that you don’t want the only one to be in your home, either. If you have fire or water damage, the paperwork could easily be damaged.

Although you can get a copy of your policy from your insurance agency, having it on hand during a disaster lets you know what needs to be done and what the insurance company expects from you. Try to store a copy in the cloud or with a nearby friend or family member.

When it comes to home disasters, Mr. Restore wants to be sure that you are ready. Following these tips will keep you from experiencing even more trauma during a disaster. If you do suffer fire or water damage, give us a call. We will restore your home to like-new quickly and efficiently, using the latest restoration technology.

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