4 Savvy Suggestions to Stashing your Assets at Home
A side door that sits ajar, a window that’s open a few inches, and a wide-open garage invite thieves to take advantage of the contents of your home, but closing all the doors and windows of your home might not always keep burglars from getting into your residence. For particularly determined thieves who might not have a problem with a simple locked door, you’ll need to make sure your valuables aren’t hanging out on the counters for anyone to see when they walk through your home.
Thieves are definitely savvy to most of the hiding spots you might have in your home, so it’s worth it to get a little creative with your secret stash of valuables, money, or family treasures.
One of the best ways to throw a thief off the scent of your valuables is to create a diversion. The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors recommends using things like books, VHS tapes, and kitchen containers to hide items. However, they also recommend using those hiding spots only if they can be made to appear natural and a longstanding part of your home.
For example, one or two VHS tapes might call attention to those visual dinosaurs, but a whole row of VHS tapes with one or two hollowed out to cleverly conceal some valuables probably won’t warrant too much attention. A thief probably won’t want to waste time looking inside 20 VHS tapes, but he’ll likely search them if there are only one or two tapes sitting on a shelf.
The chance is remote that a thief might dig into your trash to find valuables, so hiding valuables beneath old coffee grounds and some chicken grease will usually keep your items out of sight. However, simply placing the valuables at the bottom of the trash can and underneath the bag isn’t going quite far enough. It’s best to get a trash can with a false bottom that you can use for valuables so that lifting the bag up out of the trashcan will only reveal the bottom of the container.
Alternatively, you can also try to use the bottom of a potted plant for a hiding spot. Just make sure that hidden items are protected from water if you’re using a real plant instead of an artificial plant. A fake bottom on a potted plant is the best way to use this handy hiding spot.
A good, old-fashioned safe is usually a solid place to store valuables, but it’s important to remember that the safe needs to be quite secure, heavy, or tightly installed into the home to provide full protection. A safe that’s impossible to crack in a few minutes, but which is light enough to lift will probably just get carried out your front door where a thief can open the safe at his leisure at a later time.
Split up your valuables into various places around your home. That way, if one of your stashes gets found, at least a burglar would still have to search for and find the others. In addition, if a thief finds one stash, they’ll be more likely to discontinue their search. Think one step ahead and use this to your advantage: create a faux stash of costume jewelry, fake money, etc. and hide it in a fairly obvious and typical hiding spot. Once a burglar finds it, he may be satisfied with the loot and leave.
Police routinely call burglaries a “crime of opportunity,” which means a thief is often only going to make off with things in plain sight or which are easy to steal. Hiding valuables is important even if you have a state-of-the-art security system.