Security at home

With crime a constant concern, it's time to consider a high security safe. Think about this for a second: when you take off your watches, your jewelry, put away your gun, or simply want to file away your birth certificates and will...where do you keep them? You might have gaint gate at the front of the house but what if a burglar sneaks passed and into the house? If you don't protect your investments and personal information in one of the many home security safes available today, what's stopping a burglary? A high security safe isn't simply a luxury item, either - it's a smart investment for anyone with any assets to guard.

Before you settle down and buy just any safe, however, it's important that you assess your needs. Do you, for instance, want to use the safe simply for paper products? If you have metal bars on the windows and a iron gate protecting the house then I imagine you don't just have paper to keep safe. Unless it is very incriminating. You can also use modern lighting to our advantage, by having a set of lights come on when a sensor detect motion. This will help to keep your house safe, by making robbers visible. Do you want to simply store some extra cash in a strongbox some place out of sight? Do you have need to store your digital media and old films (VCR, CD-ROM, USB jump drives or external hard drives, old audio cassettes, etc.) in a secure place? These are all classified under different UL (Underwriter's Laboratory) classifications, as the need for fire protection is clearly an issue.

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Before you make an investment in home security safes, it's best to know what to look for.

Consider the following, before you speak to a safe merchant like American Security Safes, one of the top-shelf safe dealers on the market:

1. Become familiar with what kind of safes you can buy. Not all safes are created equal, there's a strongbox that may be the most burglar-proof on the market, but does it protect as well against fire or water damage? There are plenty of sizes, shapes and styles available, but what would protect your contents the best?

Threat-specific safes are the first to consider. You may buy a wall safe or floor safe, or a stand-alone, or even a personal laptop safe. Location and function would guide your answer to the type of safe you'll buy. Another distinction between home security safes is the locking mechanism. Locks come in the standard combination, electronic PIN style, key locks and various forms of biometric locks (including voice recognition, fingerprint, retinal scan).

2. Do a threat-assessment and analyze the need of your protection level. What are you trying to protect (the contents)? What am I trying to guard against (threat: fire, water, burglary)? The fact is that buying a "theft-proof" safe to guard digital media will guard against theft, but there is a real threat of fire that will need to be addressed. In such a case, getting a fireproof, high security safe designed for digital records will be the best bet. Another consideration is, if you will store small items such as watches and jewelry as well as other items, you should consider home security safes that offer organized shelving and drawers. Again, American Security Safes and other companies of their stature offer a number of products that will keep your valuables safe and organized as well.

3. Location, location, location! When you're dealing with a high security safe, location is vital to maintaining the protection and accessibility of the valuables. You will also find that safes tend to be pretty large, especially if they have fire cladding and other options. Make sure that the safe is able to be mounted/bolted in place, and if you're buying a wall or floor model, then you can be sure that these will be secure by their very nature as far as anchoring goes. Locating the safe in a garage, in plain sight, though popular - is a bad idea. Even if you don't buy a concealed safe (wall/floor), you don't want to invite trouble.

Once you've assessed the above, then you want to make sure that you buy from a reputable dealer. Make sure that you do your homework as far as company reputation, and that the safe is indeed a quality, independently-tested, and trustworthy safe from a trusted company. Quality producers of safes include FireKing, Honeywell, Sentry Safe and American Security Safes. There are others, of course, such as Guardall and AvidBiometrics - by no means is this an exhaustive list - the point is to be sure to look at consumer reports and independent reviews from the company you choose.