How to choose the right Safe

Listed Under: News and Advice

Purchasing a safe for a domestic or commercial property has become more popular in recent times. A safe is a valuable investment for cash, documents and those items that cannot be replaced such as family heirlooms.

When protecting your possessions for home or business you need to make an informed decision on the type of safe you need. Such as your budget, what you’ll actually be using it for, the amount of space that you have in your property.

Our guide should help you to choose the right safe for your needs.

The most important questions which will help you to shape your decision are:

  • The value of the items that will be going into the safe
  • How big does the safe need to be when taking the above into account?
  • How much space do you have?
  • Do you need fire protection?
  • Key or electronic keypad?

Things to think about when buying a Safe

Cash Rating 

A burglar resistant safe will have a cash rating, this will tell you the level of security of the safe and the highest amount of cash that should be kept in the safe. If the cash rating of your safe is £1,000 then for valuable items such as jewellery you can times this amount by 10, so £10,000.

The cash rating of your safe is important to think about if you plan on keeping large amounts of cash overnight. This amount must be agreed to by your insurer and the ratings will only apply if the safe has been installed correctly.  See our safe installation page here.

The cash rating can also tell you the strength of the safe, how strong the walls and doors are and how secure the lock is. The higher the cash rating the more secure the safe is likely to be. 

Fire Rating

The Fire Rate refers to how long a safe can endure a fire, which is an important factor depending on the contents and the materials you will be putting in the safe.

The fire rating could matter more for commercial properties than for domestic properties. You may need a higher fire rating if it is in a commercial property or factory.

Many of the safes that we sell and install have a fire protection of 1 hour which in most cases is a sufficient amount of time.  

Safe Types

How your safe is going to be positioned in your property is an important decision to make.

The options are:

  • A wall safe which requires a thick wall and you do not want it to be easily accessible from the outside
  • Floor safe which is concreted into a solid floor
  • Free standing safe which can be bolted down to the floor or wall
  • Under floorboard safe, which fits between floor joists

It’s a good idea to plan where in your house you want to install a safe, as a burglar is likely to go to the master bedroom first, so putting your safe there might not be the best option. 

Decide what you want to put in your safe

Once you know what you want to keep in your safe you will know how big you need your safe to be.

Domestic safes can store: family heirlooms, cash, jewellery, passports and birth certificates.
Businesses may want to store: important data, contracts, insurance papers, tax records and cash.

Combination lock or keyed lock

There are a number of options for safe locks, such as electronic keypads which require a pin code and/or a key lock. Also businesses may want additional features, such as time locks, audit trails or dual controls.

Contact us today

We recommend that you talk to your insurer and discuss what you will be putting in your safe, we can then help to ensure that the installation process follows the manufacturer’s guideline so that your safe is fully covered by insurers. Visit our safes page to find out more about our services.

If you’re looking for a safe for domestic purposes, see our home installation page to find out more.