Are Your Coins Safe In Your Home Safe?

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by Hobo, Apr 11, 2012.

  1. Hobo

    Hobo Squirrel Hater

    Probably not. A determined thief (or thieves) will simply take the entire safe (as was the case in the article below).

    Burglary costs SW WA couple $80K in coins

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  3. Hunt1

    Hunt1 Active Member

    No safe is completely safe. Give the criminals enough time and they'll get into anything. With that being said, a good insurance policy is your best safe.
  4. DrunkNumismatic

    DrunkNumismatic New Member

    Having a small safe is one of the dumbest things you can do. It basically amounts to putting all your valuables in one spot, with a sign that says "take me, i'm valuable". If you are going to have a safe, make it big, and have it bolted somehow to the structure of your home. I have a big safe bolted to my basement floor. Its also hard to find.
  5. jterry85

    jterry85 New Member

    And yet another sad example of human behavior... I know the personal value of the coins as collected items can't necessarily be recovered but I hope they were insured and can recover the monetary value. Thanks for the reminder to update with my insurance company Hobo!
  6. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    Good article, thanks for posting. Makes you stop and think. I had read similar lately, which is why in the end I moved bullion and higher end coins to a sdb. I just didn't want to risk a group of guys physically being able to take the safe, or worst yet a home invasion. If there isn't a lot of money of coins laying around, I will just open the safe and let them be on their way. I will be less tempted to "defend my belongings".

    Now, any baddie reading this, remember I was a sniper, own guns, and have defended myself in combat. You dang well better get the drop on me first. :)
  7. mill rat41

    mill rat41 Member

    I've been thinking about buying a safe because this hobby isn't as much fun when everything is locked up at the bank, but I worry about some geeked out hype waiting for me when I get home with a gun to my head demanding me to open the safe.

    I was looking at the Liberty Lincoln - I heard they arepretty good and heavy. Can everything go in the safe: coins,important papers, money, guns, electronics, etcetera?
  8. rodeoclown

    rodeoclown Dodging Bulls

    Not entirely true, it's easier and less painful to pull a good tooth out with some pliars and no numbing than deal with most insurance companies when making a claim. ;)

    Always keep proof of purchases and receipts if possible or they'll give you the lowest amount. Not like they're gonna give you Red Book prices on a graded coin by your own word, they'd be more likely to give you melt value without proof of grade, purchase price, etc.

    And don't store your receipts in the same safe with your coins. Scan them to make digital copies, store them offsite somewhere. Simply opening a free email account with gmail, yahoo or msn, send to yourself is considered having second copies for proof for claims. Treat them like the family photos. I have Gigabytes of photos of the kids (these are actually priceless compared to my coins), I have backups not only locally and on backup media stored in a fire proof safe but also have backups of every photo and video on 4 different servers in 4 different locations across the U.S. You can bet my important receipts are right along side those images as well.

  9. Hunt1

    Hunt1 Active Member

    The key word in my statement was good ;).

    As the old saying contends, you get what you pay for.
  10. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    The only concern I would have would be having guns and coins in the same space. Some chemicals used on guns aren't the greatest for coins. My advice would be to store the guns dry, and keep the humidity in the safe low. Dry guns, (not oiled), are fine as long as its low humidity, which is what coins like too. NEVER store gun cleaning supplies in it, and since its a low humidity environment, (read how to achieve that), its not very healthy for paper money.
  11. jterry85

    jterry85 New Member

    I store my gun next to me... at least I did before moving to Germany. I tend to be a bit paranoid though. I also collect antique firearms and edged weapons which are with family until I get back stateside. I usually keep the non-functioning ones in a nice display cabinet and the others will go into a HUGE safe that I'm going to buy when I get home.
  12. Vess1

    Vess1 CT SP VIP

    Aside from it not being bolted down, it sounds like they should have had a better safe. I missed the part where it says the burglars miraculously busted the 1000+ lb safe out of the concrete floor, unhooked and moved appliances, and hauled it upstairs and out.

    Now, most safes can be torched. I've got 7 gauge stainless steel welded on the inside in addition to the other layers of steel. You can bring a torch but you're gonna be there a loooong time and probably ruin half the contents by the time you punch one hole at a time. Same with a grinding wheel. Going to be there a long time.

    All this article proves is that some idiots were using a cheap, low weight safe to store $80k in. You would expect this to happen.
  13. mill rat41

    mill rat41 Member

    Thanks Medeora Man, that is exactly what I wanted to know. The safe comes with some kindof dehumidifier.
  14. Vess1

    Vess1 CT SP VIP

    I nixed my Liberty order. You'll be on back order for months. Their customer service sucks and there's a place that makes way better safes, minus the high quality paint job, advertising costs, etc.. , for about the same cost. Only you get a lot more product for your money. I'll send you a PM.
  15. Vess1

    Vess1 CT SP VIP

    For the record, I agree with this statement. The only difference is that some are far tougher to get into than others. Most attacks are blunt force which is useless. What you buy, sets the percentage of your odds. If combined with a home security system, I believe a true "good" safe, bolted down is going to work because of the lack of time. Anybody who studies them a little bit will know what's good. Most of the big brand names aren't that good.
  16. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    I agree only if coupled with where and how you place it. The best safe in the world is not that good if unbolted in the middle of a room. The worst safe in the world is not that bad if bolted into concrete and surrounded on 3 sides by walls. ;)
  17. beef1020

    beef1020 Junior Member

    Just want to add some thoughts on security. The home safe, safe deposit box is a personal choice, which i personally side with the safe deposit box on, but there are two other key considerations which are cheap and extremely important.

    First, be very careful who knows that you collect coins. I suspect in most cases where coins are stolen they are stolen by people the collector knows. I know how tough it can be to not share your hobby with friends/relatives, but we as collectors need to ask ourselves if this person needs to know. My inlaws do not know about my collection and I have instructed my kids explicitly to not talk to their friends about my collection.

    Second, if you have coins or coins related material (magazines, supplies, etc.) shipped to you, get a PO box. You can get a small one and the post office will just hold your material. Do not give your home address to coin organizations either.

    The critical first step to securing your coin collection is to limit the number of people who know you have it and limit the access to your home address for anyone who must know you have it.
  18. GDJMSP

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    If you want to buy a safe, do yourself a favor, go to a locksmith shop and talk to them first. Ask and find what brand of safes, and models, have the best burglary rating and the best fire rating. Then that's the one you buy. But they aint cheap, promise you that.
  19. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    Great post. I violate nearly every dang tenet, but that doesn't mean you are not completely correct. :)
  20. swish513

    swish513 Penny & Cent Collector

    after silence about collecting, get a couple of rotweilers and a .357 with hollow points. all bases covered.
  21. Smitty

    Smitty New Member

    I did extensive research on this subject a few months ago before purchasing my safe. Heck, after watching all the videos and reading the articles I felt like I could break into just about any safe. What surprised me was how easy the 10- and 12-gauge big name gun safes were to punch a hole in the side with just a fire axe. And the Sentry safe I keep papers in can be sawed in half with a circular saw in about two minutes. As Medoraman pointed out as a minimum, my new safe is surrounded by 3 plaster walls and bolted down. Doesn't sound like these people had theirs bolted down.

    One thing to keep in mind is that a normal "fire-resistant" safe will not keep coin slabs from melting. You need to either place a media-rated box inside the safe, or get a "media safe". Even though my new safe is fire-resistant, I put my slabs inside a Honeywell 1102 media-safe chest and put that inside the safe.

    I got conflicting advice when asking locksmiths. Chances are, they're gonna recommend what they're trying to sell. The best resources I found were on gun forums, YouTube and reading tons of material about the various features of safes and the methods that thieves use to break into them. For instance, I had no idea that you could drill a hole in the side and push against one locking bolt to open the door on some safes. So you've got to understand how the bolt mechanism works to prevent buying one like this.

    But in the end, safe choice is usually about picking your compromises.
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