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Should I Keep Cash in a Safe at Home?
Cash is still king in many ways, especially when it comes to emergency situations. You can't predict when a natural disaster will cause power outages and impact credit card machines, or when your bank's online system will go down, leaving you without access to your money. In these circumstances, having cash on hand can be crucial. However, the question arises – should you keep cash in a safe at home? In this article, we'll explore the pros and cons of keeping cash in a physical safe.
The Pros of Keeping Cash in a Safe
1. Security from theft
If you’re worried about keeping large amounts of cash at home, a safe can be a great solution to keep your money secure. A good quality safe is designed to be tamper-proof, fire-resistant, waterproof, and can protect your cash from being stolen by burglars or other intruders. It can give you peace of mind that your money is safe and secure in your home.
2. Protection from Natural Disasters
In the event of a natural disaster such as an earthquake or a hurricane, electricity, ATMs, and credit card machines can be out of service, and you may not be able to access your bank account or withdraw cash. A safe can save you from financial trouble during these times and ensure that you have access to cash on hand.
When you keep cash in a safe, no one knows how much money you have, and you can keep your financial affairs private. You do not have to risk the possibility of sensitive financial information being hacked by cybercriminals. By keeping cash in a safe, you're maintaining a semblance of privacy and protecting your personal financial information.
4. Easy Access
You can access your cash in a safe whenever you want, without having to go through the bureaucratic procedures of banks or financial institutions. This can be especially useful in times of emergencies or unexpected expenses that require immediate cash. You can simply open your safe and take the required amount of cash out.
5. It's Affordable
Compared to other forms of security, a safe is a very affordable option. Although there are many different types of safes available in the market, you can easily find a reasonably priced safe that will provide you with all the necessary security features.
The Cons of Keeping Cash in a Safe
1. Risk of Theft
While a safe can provide excellent security against burglars, it’s important to remember that no safe is entirely theft-proof. Burglars can try to break into the safe by any means possible, such as attempting to pry it open, using power tools or even explosives. A safe does not guarantee that your money will never be stolen from your home.
2. Limited Protection from Natural Disasters
A safe may appear to be a good solution to protect your money from natural disasters, but it's not entirely foolproof. A fire or a flood could damage or destroy the safe and its contents, leaving your money vulnerable to loss.
3. Cash May Not Be Fully Insured
If you store your money in a bank, you have the assurance of the bank's insurance coverage to protect your savings in case of a robbery or natural disaster. However, if you keep money in a safe, your homeowner’s insurance may only cover part of the cash, if any at all. You would need to check with your insurance provider regarding the details of your policy.
Storing cash in a safe at home requires you to take on the responsibility of its security, maintenance, and replacement if needed. You may have to take extra steps to ensure the safety of the safe and its contents, such as hiding it from visitors and ensuring it is adequately bolted down to prevent burglars from removing it entirely.
5. Opportunity Cost
As interest rates remain low, cash held in a safe can work against your interest. While it may be accessible, cash kept in a safe is not generating any interest, thus producing no returns. You may consider some low-risk investment alternatives to grow your money.
If you're thinking of keeping cash in a safe at home, it's important to weigh the pros and cons. While a safe can provide excellent security features, it's not entirely theft-proof. It has its limitations in protection against natural disasters, storage and maintenance requirements, insurance coverage, and lost opportunity costs. Ultimately, it comes down to your preference and the level of risk you're willing to take. If you decide to keep cash at home, it may be best to keep it in a safe with a durable construction, bolting system, and fire-resistant features. With proper care, it can give you peace of mind and convenient access to your money when you need it the most.