How to Vault Silver Securely at Home
Dollar for dollar silver weighs more and takes up far more space than gold – so if you’re a serious home investor you’re going to need a BIG safe…
Three thousand dollars of gold can mean two small 1oz coins. For the same value in silver, you’re going to be looking at 170 coins, with each individual coin taking up more space than it’s gold cousin.
Secure storage of a heavyweight bulky metal is going to come at a price. How big a price is going to depend on your investment level and insurance needs.
Science and Math 101
Gold is a far denser metal than silver, and so an ounce of gold takes up roughly half the space of an ounce of silver (silver’s density is 10.49g/cm3 versus gold’s 19.32g/cm3)
Gold is also currently 85 times more valuable than silver ounce for ounce, so a quick bit of mental arithmetic tells us you’ll need 170 times more space to store $10,000 worth of silver compared to gold.
It stands to reason then that a silver safe may need to be substantially bigger than one you’d use for gold.
This means secure home storage of anything more than hobbyist levels of silver investment, will need a product at the higher end of the home-safe market.
Example Silver Holding: $50,000
$50,000 in gold may only weigh a couple pounds and will take up less space than a cup of coffee. On the other hand $50,000 in silver weighs in at a hefty 170lb and consists of 2750 silver coins – almost 6 monster boxes of Silver Eagles, or 17x10oz bars!
While 32 small gold coins will easily fit inside any home safe, trying to cram 2750 coins inside a cheap off-the-shelf safe is going to be far more problematic.
Silver needs a good level of storage volume, a high insurance rating, and be strong enough to withstand prolonged burglary attacks. A TL rating is essential.
Silver has a relatively low melting point for a metal, melting at only 1,763°F – and while house fires average 1,100°F they can run as high as 2,000°F easily enough to reduce your silver investment into a puddle – so your safe should be independently tested with a fire rating of at least 30 minutes.
Ideally the safe will be securely bolted to a solid concrete floor or heavy masonry wall. A safe of this size is going to weigh 250lb – 1000lb and with a further 170lb weight inside it’s going to be difficult for even the most determined burglar to remove – but all the more so if it’s held in place by several strong steel anchors!
Example safes which meet all of the above criteria – and are able to carry an increasing holding:
- Stack-On Fire and Burglary Executive Safe 40″ Elite
- Mesa Safe MTLE 3524 Commercial Safe
- ISM Bullion TL-30 BU35 8.5 Cu Ft
- ISM The Fortress 700 8 Cu Ft
- AmVault TL-15 CE3524 9.7 Cu Ft
These safes range in price from $2,000 – $5,000 depending on stockists, but offer the ultimate in home security and depending on the amount of time you plan to hold your metals, they can compare very favorably with professional vaulting costs.
Of course for smaller holdings, you can buy good quality TL rated safes in the $600-$1,000 price range but always remember bullion safes should be independently tested as secure to ensure your insurance will cover their contents – skimping on quality can result in a total loss in the event of theft.
Finally, to reduce risk from theft it’s critical that your silver collection is not something that’s common knowledge outside of your immediate family and for any value above 5-figures you must make absolutely certain your safe is professionally installed, adequately insured and preferably well hidden.
Want more? Learn the best ways to store your silver securely – with our Free Precious Metals Guide and Investor Kit, delivered direct to your doorstep.
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