How to Store, Hide, Keep, & Protect Your Silver
We are frequently asked how and where to store silver. It depends on how much. If you own less than a few hundred ounces of silver, it is easy enough to simply store your investment at home in a safe.
First, remember not to tell anyone about your silver and definitely not where you keep it. Though you may trust your friends and acquaintances, you never know when they may, perhaps after a few drinks, mention that a friend of theirs invests heavily in silver which is kept on their property. The point is to be extra cautious and extra safe, as this is a serious investment.
Keeping & storing your silver yourself:
Although it is not always the case, we generally recommend keeping physical possession of your self yourself. Doing things yourself is often the most secure way to look after your property, in the same was as keeping track of sites like Love Money can ensure you stay on top of your own finances. The solution to this is a heavy duty vault type of safe bolted down so that no one can take it and is both fireproof and waterproof. This way you are protected against thieves that may otherwise take your safe with them, and against nature.
Hiding & Protecting your silver:
Although purchasing a safe can be rather costly, it is definitely the recommended way to store an investment like silver. If you are going to spend thousands and thousands eventually on silver, you should consider buying a nice safe that costs $500 to 1500 dollars. There are cheaper safes that will get the job done. Make sure that your safe has enough space for how much silver you estimate to have and then some. There are safes around $300 (saw one at costco) that can be bolted down to your floor, both fireproof and waterproof, that can easily hold at least 7-8000 ounces of silver.
Other great options include hiding it cleverly in a place no one will expect. We have seen some interesting fake-safes that are basically a normal household item but is actually a safe. They include fake dictionaries that are carved out to hold things, pizza boxes, cans of paint, cans of food, etc. These usually can only hold a small amount of silver, but they can be extremely effective if you have a small stash and place it wisely. For example, there are fake safes that say "English-Hebrew Dictionary". Putting silver that is bubbled wrapped so as to not make a sound when moved in a fake book like this, in a pile of other books that are old, dusty, and seem to have no value may just be all you need to hide your silver from any would-be thief. Thieves in your home generally are short on time and will likely miss your silver if you are clever. Other methods include drilling holes in your wall, planting it in your backyard, or triple-wrapping and sealing it and putting it in a old 20 gallon tank in your garage. Get creative!
Although we don't recommend it, here are some other popular options:
1. Private Storage Vaults & Facilities. Some dealers also offer secure storage facilities. Your silver will be registered, numbered, and stored with you paying a storage fee. The problem with this is you are not the primary person in charge of your silver anymore. There are trust issues and rules can be changed. Although this can be a great option, we believe holding your physical yourself is better. For example, if there happens to be bank closures or everyone rushes in to cash out their metal, you may experience waiting times and uncertainty. If you choose this method, make sure you fully trust and understand the business and its operation.
There are some great companies independent from the banking system that will hold your items securely for you for a fee. For precious metals there are different types of account and levels of security available. If you choose this option, again make sure that the company is reliable and you have done your due diligence in research so that you are fully confident and trust them to hold your investment.
2. Safety deposit boxes. These are generally payed for by you and are kept inside a box. This, again, poses the risk that if one day there is panic in the markets and everyone rushes to the bank for whatever reason, you may not be able to get your items in time or at all. If you choose this method be sure you know all of your bank's relevant policies.
In our opinion, safety deposit boxes are not necessary safe. Many times when banks or currencies have collapsed, or on panic occasions such as 9/11 and in war, people are unable to get their deposited items out in time or even at all. Many times, during the same time a precious metals dealer will be open for business and will serve as the "bank". The history of these scenarios suggests that it could easily repeat itself.
Many people seem to think that safety deposit boxes are insured by the bank. The truth is they are NOT INSURED.