How Large Is a Safe Deposit Box?

People use safe deposit boxes to hold a variety of important papers and other items. Because the uses are so varied they come in a variety of different sizes. Most financial institutions offer them for rent or as a perk to their customers.

Sizes and How to Get a Safe Deposit Box

If you let someone at your financial institution, bank or credit union, know that you’re interested in securing a safe deposit box they’ll put you in touch with the personnel that can explain the system to you including the available sizes, cost and how to set up a contract for a box. Sizes vary from place to place, but most carry smaller boxes such as 3″x5″ or 5″x5″. Most are 18″ to 24″ in length. Larger boxes are usually available as well and come as large as 10″ x 10″.

What Size Safe Deposit Box Do You Need?

Decide what you would like to put in your safe deposit box. If you have valuable jewelry that you would like to keep safe or an inventory of your belongings for insurance purposes, a box is a great place to keep these items safe from fire, water damage or theft.

What Not to Put in a Safe Deposit Box

Once you decide what you would like to put in the box, you can decide what size you would like to rent. This will prevent you from overpaying for a larger box than you need. Valuable jewelry and important paperwork can all go in there. For all of the things that you could — and should — put in a safe deposit box there are some things that don’t belong there. Original copies of your will, your health directive and an article granting your power of attorney to another person should be kept somewhere other than your safe deposit box. If something happens to you, not just anyone in your family can get into the box. You can consider adding a co-signer for your box, but nobody else in your family will be able to access your belongings. Passports, deeds and titles are also good things to put in a box for safe keeping.

Other Things to Consider for Your Safe Deposit Box

When you get the safe deposit box, you can list a co-signer so someone else is able to access the box if something should happen to you. Check with your homeowner’s insurance to see if the contents of your box are covered if you want to put jewelry or other valuable belongings in it.

When You Can Access Your Box

One thing to keep in mind when renting a safe deposit box is that you’ll only be able to access your box during business hours. For this reason its important to not store belongings in the box that you may need to access when your bank or financial institution is closed.