The Worst Places to Hide Your Valuables and Better Alternatives
In a perfect world, we wouldn’t need to protect our possessions. Unfortunately, home burglaries do happen. They happen a lot, in fact, occurring about 2 million times per year. About 30 percent of home robberies occur after a door or window is opened. Today’s homeowners are in a bind: It’s hard to hide the valuables, and it’s even harder to outsmart the world of home thieves.
While a variety of hiding spots can secure your valuables, some are better than others. Some are secure, and others are well-hidden. That said, some are poorly chosen. Burglars know the basics of robbery, and they’ll target the following areas, first:
- Under the Bed
Like drawers, the space under your bed isn’t as safe as you’d think. If you were a thief, you’d probably check the bedroom’s underbelly, first. It just makes sense. Even if you’re packing valuables in a small, secured safe, you shouldn’t undermine its security by shoving it under the bed. If they didn’t check the drawers first, it’s because they’ve targeted the bed.
- The Sock Drawer
It might seem like a good idea: Laundry clutter hides valuables. If you can camouflage your valuables, you’re safe, right? Wrong. Burglars know about the old “sock drawer” trick, and they won’t be turned off by worthless underwear. Thieves aren’t nice, and they’re not honest people. It isn’t beyond them to invade your privacy.
- Anywhere in the Garage
Your car, tools and heavyweight valuables might be safe in your garage, but don’t use it as a place to store your bills, jewelry and important documents. While garage doors are durable, they’ll do little to defend your luxury items from a break-in. Understandably, homeowners use a garage’s natural clutter to cloak anything worthwhile. This doesn’t work, as burglars commonly visit the garage anyway. Regular garage items are worth money, and an exit trip to the garage, likely, will result in a burglar rifling through your items.
- The Freezer
Homeowners store their valuables in freezers. If you didn’t know, now you do. Unfortunately, so do the thieves. Wrapping your valuables in aluminum foil, shoving it in the freezer, and labeling it as frozen food is an old trick, but it’s running out of steam. Burglars might not spend time rummaging through your freezer, but they’ll still check it. If you have anything that looks out of place, it’s free game.
- The Medicine Cabinet
Medicine cabinets are private, and they’re commonly adjoined to one’s bedroom. There’s a high degree of perceived security with them, which is why homeowners frequently use them for safe storage. Thieves do raid these cabinets, however, as they frequently look for prescription medicine. If you’ve hidden your valuables in a false pill bottle, you’ll only be giving them a valuable surprise.
Drawers are a common consideration, security-wise. Unfortunately, they’re also one of the first places thieves check. While they’re capable storage containers, anything you’ve stashed is still accessible. Everyone uses drawers for storage—and everyone else knows it. Drawers are easy to remove, and it isn’t uncommon for thieves to dismantle an entire dresser within seconds.
Where Should You Hide Your Valuables?
While the above-mentioned places may seem like viable options, they’re surprisingly overdone. So, what gives? Is there anywhere you can hide your items? As it turns out, a few hiding places stand out above the rest. Some of them are typical, but they’re also highly reliable. As for the others, they’re a bit cleverer. Let’s check them out:
- Air Vents
- Secret Safe Books
You can buy these at your local office supply store. Secret safe books are one of the best security options available, and they’re incredibly cheap. Sometimes, hiding your valuables in a seemingly mundane location is your best bet.
- False Pictures
False pictures, like secret safe books, are cheap. They have hollow backs, and they’re perfect for covering hung keys, wall safes and documents. Simply find a security-worthy wall spot, stash the valuables and hang the picture. Your bigger items might not fit, but your smaller items will be well-protected.
- Floor Safes
While standalone safes can be lifted, hauled and stolen, floor safes are pretty defensible. Because they’re built into your home’s structure, they’re not immediately visible. They can also be covered with a rug, a bookshelf or another large object. Use a floor safe to store your larger items, and make sure it’s protected by a combination lock.
- A False Wall Outlet
First, make sure the receptacle isn’t live. Then, purchase a cheap false wall outlet. These perfectly camouflaged surfaces are excellent storage spaces for jewelry, bills and folded documents. Just make sure there isn’t any electrical wiring hanging around.
- Attic Ornament Boxes
The attic itself is a fantastic hiding spot. While burglars might break in while you’re not home, they’re likely to avoid your attic. Burglars don’t like cornering themselves, and they’ll avoid any adventure which takes time. On the off chance they do check out your attic, they’ll ignore your Christmas decorations. Consider using old ornament boxes, or plain cardboard boxes, to store your valuables in your attic.
Air vents are basically wall-mounted safes. Thieves might be prepared to lift a small safe, but they won’t take the time to unhook an air vent with a Phillips head screwdriver. You can purchase a faux air vent storage unit, too, installing it in your bedroom or bathroom.
When hiding your valuables, it’s a good idea to consider the thief’s perspective. Where would you look? How would you try to outsmart the homeowner? Stay ahead of them, and make sure your home’s security system and locks are up to date. Then, take advantage of your home’s finer hiding areas. For more suggestions, call us at 610-644-5334 or request a free estimate!