Home safe options provide peace of mind when you’ve got cash, important documents, jewelry, and other valuables in the house. A safe for home use that protects birth certificates, passports, marriage licenses, and deeds, alongside family heirlooms and emergency cash. While basic models safeguard against theft, higher-end ones also offer fire protection and keep precious belongings dry in a flood.
Security measures in home safes range from mechanical locks and deadbolts to keypads and biometric barriers. Learn about the different types, the security they offer, and why these picks are considered the best among home safe reviews and retailers.
- BEST OVERALL: SentrySafe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe
- RUNNER-UP: Viking Security Safe VS-25BL Biometric Safe
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Amazon Basics Steel Home Security Safe
- BEST LOCKBOX: SentrySafe CHW20221 Fireproof and Waterproof Box
- BEST BIOMETRIC: Viking Security Safe VS-50BLX Fingerprint Safe
- BEST WALL SAFE: Paragon Lock & Safe 7725 Superior Wall Safe
- BEST HIDDEN: Jssmst Book Safe With Combination Lock
- BEST MINI: Amazon Basics Slim Desk Drawer Security Safe
- BEST LARGE: SentrySafe EF4738E Fireproof Waterproof Safe
- BEST PORTABLE: Master Lock 5900D Portable Safe
- BEST FIREPROOF: SentrySafe 1200 Fireproof Box
Before You Buy a Home Safe
Home safes keep your valuables safe from individual dangers like theft, fire, or water, but not every model safeguards against all of these threats. If you are most concerned about one particular type of threat, consider it as you choose the best safes for home use. Also, consider what you plan to store in your home safe. Different safe designs work better for specific items, such as a gun safe for storing firearms.
How We Chose the Best Home Safes
The best home safe can protect valuables and important documents from several threats, including theft, fire, or flood. We looked at home safe types and features to see how they might safeguard valuables, guns, and documents. This included build, wall thickness, and locking mechanisms to protect valuables from burglary.
We also looked at the size and weight of home safes on the market to choose the best home safes for various purposes, such as travel or concealment. Many home safes on this list are rated for fire resistance and water resistance, an added layer of protection in the event of a natural disaster. We also looked at features such as security methods and whether the safe has carpeting and adjustable shelves or lighting inside.
Our Top Picks
A home safe keeps its contents safe from perils like theft, fire, and water damage. They give you peace of mind knowing that your valuable items, irreplaceable heirlooms, and important documents will survive these threats. Keep your prized possessions safe in the best home safe for your needs and preferences. Choose yours from among these top-rated home safes.
Deter theft and enjoy protection from both fire and water with this highly rated, reasonably priced fireproof and waterproof home safe. Sturdy steel, four live-locking bolts, a pry-resistant hinge bar, and bolt-down hardware keep valuables and important documents safe and secure.
Its 1.23-cubic-foot capacity keeps sensitive materials like USB drives, CDs, and DVDs away from fire and water. It can withstand fire, heat, and smoke for up to 1 hour and keep contents dry for up to 24 hours in 8 inches of water. A digital keypad with backup key provides extra security. Other notable features include an interior light and a locking drawer.
What our tester says: Glenda Taylor, a Bob Vila product tester and staff writer, had this to say about this home safe in our full review (linked below), “I was impressed with its water-resistant feature. I placed the safe on a sidewalk, put a water sprinkler on top, and let the water run for over an hour. Before the test, I set a toilet paper roll in the safe to tell whether the water came through the seals. When I opened the safe after the water test, the toilet paper roll was bone dry. I was impressed.”
Read our full review: SentrySafe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe
- Lock type: Electronic keypad
- Dimensions: 17.8 inches high by 1.3 inches wide by 19.3 inches deep
- Weight: 87 pounds
- Material: Steel
- Live-locking bolts plus bolt-down hardware for theft protection
- Includes digital keypad with backup key
- Spacious 1.23 cubic foot capacity keeps sensitive materials safe
- Withstands fire for 1 hour and 8 inches of water for 24 hours
- Requires 4 AAA batteries, which are not include and must be purchased separately
Get the SentrySafe SFW123GDC home safe at Amazon or Lowe’s.
Secure money, jewelry, and other small valuables in the compact Viking Security Biometric Safe. In addition to a 20 millimeter deadbolt locking system with two pry-resistant steel locking bars, the safe also requires your unique fingerprint to unlock the door. Program up to 32 fingerprints or use the backup PIN code to allow others access to the safe.
This small biometric safe measures 10 inches high by 14 inches wide by 10 inches deep. Inside, it has an adjustable shelf, an interior LED light, and carpet to protect contents from scratches or other damage. A warning beep alerts users when they forget to lock the door. Keep in mind, however, this safe is not fire- or water-resistant.
- Lock type: Biometric and electronic keypad
- Dimensions: 10 inches high by 14 inches wide by 10 inches deep
- Weight: 25 pounds
- Material: Steel
- Deadbolt locking system plus 2 pry-resistant steel bars
- Requires unique fingerprint to open; up to 32 programmed prints
- Includes interior adjustable shelf inside, light, and protective carpeting
- Warning beep alerts users who forget to lock the door
- Not fire- or water-resistant, which limits functionality in particularly stressful situations
- Requires some time to set up
Get the Viking Security Safe SFW123GDC home safe at Amazon or Wayfair.
Those on a budget can rely on the Amazon Basics Steel Home Security Safe’s 1.52-cubic-foot interior space and digital keypad locking system. This safe comes with a programmable electronic keypad and a backup key for emergencies. You can rely on AA batteries for keeping the keypad operational. As for durability, this safe is made with a heavy-duty 8-gauge carbon-steel door and a 14-gauge steel body. Plus, this model is made with two live-door locking bolts and concealed pry-resistant hinges.
For added convenience, this model has an interior shelf for organizing jewelry, important documents, and other valuables as well as a predrilled mounting hole and hardware.
- Lock type: Electronic keypad
- Dimensions: 16.5 inches high by 13.8 inches wide by 13 inches deep
- Weight: 33.66 pounds
- Material: 8- and 14-gauge carbon steel
- 1.52-cubic-foot interior space can fit many valuables; built-in storage shelf
- Electronic keypad as well as a keyed entry in case of emergencies or dead batteries
- 2 live-door bolts as well as concealed pry-resistant hinges for safety
- Predrilled mounting holes and mounting hardware included
- Not fire- or waterproof; may not be ideal for some users
Get the Amazon Basics steel home safe at Amazon.
Documents, CDs, and USB drives remain safe from fire and water in this sturdy lockbox from SentrySafe. Measuring 4.4 inches high by 12.8 inches wide by 8.5 inches deep, this small home safe box holds passports, wallets, cash, and digital media inside the roomy main compartment and along the in-lid organizer straps. A carrying handle makes it easy to grab in an emergency or use as a travel safe.
A tubular key lock adds a layer of security and prevents the lid from opening in a fire. This UL-rated lockbox withstands 30 minutes of fire at 1,550 degrees Fahrenheit. It withstands up to 72 hours of water submersion, according to its ETL verification. For homes with limited space, this is the best small home safe for your valuables.
- Lock type: Key lock
- Dimensions: 4.4 inches high by 12.8 inches wide by 8.5 inches deep
- Weight: 20.4 pounds
- Material: Captured fire insulation
- Sturdy lockbox for small items like cash and passports; features in-lid straps to keep things organized
- Carrying handle for use while traveling; convenient to grab in emergency situations
- Tubular key lock adds security and keeps safe closed in a fire
- Withstands fire up to 30 minutes and submersion in water for 72 hours
- Too small for some items, including paperwork
- Not as secure as a home safe that bolts down
Get the SentrySafe CHW20221 home safe at Amazon.
For quick and easy access to valuables, consider this biometric safe from Viking Security. The safe, which measures 20 inches high by 14 inches wide by 12 inches deep, unlocks in a fraction of a second with the scan of a registered fingerprint. The fingerprint library saves up to 32 fingerprints to give family members or workers safe access. Users may also enter a PIN code or use the backup key to open the safe.
This roomy biometric safe keeps intruders out with heavy-duty locking bolts and a pry-resistant design. To keep valuables organized and protected inside, it has three adjustable shelves, built-in LED lighting, and a soft, fully carpeted interior.
- Lock type: Biometric and electronic keypad
- Dimensions: 20 inches high by 14 inches wide by 12 inches deep
- Weight: 43 pounds
- Material: Steel
- High-tech biometric security; saves up to 32 fingerprints, plus backup key and PIN
- Heavy-duty locking bolts plus a pry-resistant design
- Three adjustable shelves with carpeting inside, plus LED lighting
- Door open beep cannot be disabled easily
- More difficult to set up biometrics compared to other locks
Get the Viking Security Safe VS-50BLX home safe at Amazon or Wayfair.
This unassuming wall safe provides an extra layer of security by hiding items behind a door that’s flush with the wall. The discreet Paragon Lock & Safe wall safe fits between existing wall studs for simple installation. Once installed, the door closes flat, which makes it easy to conceal the safe behind a painting or cupboard.
This shallow wall safe measures 22 inches high by 16 inches wide by 4 inches deep, which provides ample space for cash, jewelry, documents, and small heirlooms. Users access the wall safe through an LED keypad, which holds master and guest codes, or one of two included manual override keys. While this wall safe is not fire- or water-resistant, it does include an extra theft-busting feature: An automatic alarm sounds after three incorrect code entries to alert anyone nearby of the entry attempt.
- Lock type: Electronic keypad
- Dimensions: 22 inches high by 16 inches wide by 4 inches deep
- Weight: 39 pounds
- Material: Steel
- Unassuming wall safe adds extra security
- Flat profile is easy to conceal behind a picture or furniture
- LED key codes plus manual override keys
- Auto alarm sounds after three incorrect codes are entered
- Too shallow for some items; works best for small items only
- Not fire- or water-resistant; may not be ideal for some users
Get the Paragon home safe at Amazon.
Keep valuables hidden in plain sight with this book safe from Jssmst. Made to look like a dictionary, this concealed safe blends right in on a bookshelf or desk with room inside for passports, jewelry, and other small valuables.
This book safe doesn’t have the robust security features of a heavy-duty home safe. Instead, the concealed design and combination lock provide the security.
The metal lockbox sits inside a realistic book cover, complete with textured sides to mimic pages. Although not fire- or water-resistant, this hidden book safe can camouflage valuables in a dorm room, office, or other space to thwart opportunistic thieves.
- Lock type: Combination lock
- Dimensions: 9.5 inches high by 6.2 inches wide by 2.2 inches deep
- Weight: 1.65 pounds
- Material: Metal
- Concealed safe blends in on a bookshelf
- Realistic-looking dictionary with textured sides to mimic pages
- Combination lock for ease of use
- Good for keeping jewelry and passports from tempting thieves
- Not as secure as more robust home safes and is not fire- or water-resistant
- Narrow inside; can only hold small items
Get the Jssmst home safe at Amazon.
Tuck away valuables in a desk drawer with this slim security safe from Amazon Basics. Measuring 11.8 inches high by 8.6 inches wide by 4.4 inches deep, this small home safe fits in a standard sliding drawer. Access the contents through the electronic keypad or included backup key.
Small but mighty, this safe doesn’t skimp on security features. Two secure door bolts and pry-resistant, concealed hinges work together to deter thieves. Predrilled mounting holes and installation hardware allow for secure installation into a drawer. But this lockbox doesn’t have to live in a drawer. The compact design makes this slim safe a good fit for a closet shelf or other small space.
- Lock type: Electronic keypad
- Dimensions: 11.8 inches high by 8.6 inches wide by 4.4 inches deep
- Weight: 11 pounds
- Material: Steel
- Slim enough to easily tuck into a desk drawer
- Pry-resistant design with two secure door bolts
- Includes predrilled mounting holes and installation hardware
Get the Amazon Basics desk drawer home safe at Amazon.
Considered the best large home safe, this SentrySafe pick stores bigger keepsakes and valuables, including firearms, secure in its roomy 4.71 cubic feet of interior space. Its three carpeted interior shelves make it the best home safe for documents and other valuables.
This secure safe protects documents, keepsakes, jewelry, firearms, digital media, and other valuables from theft, fire, and water. It features five live-locking bolts, four deadbolts, a solid-steel design, and a bolt-down kit for advanced theft protection. The safe withstands temperatures of up to 1,400 degrees Fahrenheit for up to 30 minutes and 72 hours submerged in up to a foot of water, according to ETL verification. SentrySafe’s waterproof safe also comes with California DOJ gun safe certification.
- Lock type: Electronic keypad
- Dimensions: 37.7 inches high by 21.7 inches wide by 19 inches deep
- Weight: 217 pounds
- Material: Steel
- Large-capacity safe (4.71 cubic feet) holds more than other home safe options
- Multiple locking bolts and deadbolts for theft protection
- Resists fire for 30 minutes and submersion in up to 1 foot of water for 72 hours
- Three carpeted interior shelves
- Keypad would melt in a fire, but backup key included
- Large size might take up too much room
Get the SentrySafe EF4738E home safe at Amazon, Lowe’s, or The Home Depot.
If you are planning on taking your valuables with you on a road trip or you need to keep goods in your car, the Master Lock is a good home safe to consider. Measuring 4.92 inches by 9.53 inches by 2.25 inches, this portable safe from Master Lock keeps valuables safe on the go. Its compact size offers plenty of room for small items like phones, keys, cash, and credit cards wherever they’re needed.
The slim, water-resistant case stows easily in a suitcase, backpack, or work bag. A shock-absorbent foam lining protects the contents inside. A simple combination lock includes a built-in security cable to anchor the safe to a fixed object to prevent theft.
- Lock type: Combination lock
- Dimensions: 2.25 inches high by 9.53 inches wide by 4.92 inches deep
- Weight: 1.56 pounds
- Material: Unknown
- Small, portable safe for travel and outdoor security
- Fits easily inside a backpack, work bag, or suitcase
- Combination lock and cable to anchor the safe to a permanent object
- Too small for items other than a phone and keys
- Combination lock mechanism not entirely secure or durable
Get the Master Lock home safe at Amazon, Ace Hardware, or The Home Depot.
Fireproof home safes are perfect for those who need to keep important documents like birth certificates, passports, and more safe in case of a fire. To meet these needs, rely on the SentrySafe 1200 fireproof box.
Though small, this tough little fire safe has a 0.18-cubic-foot interior and has a Underwriters Laboratories (UL)-classified and Electrical Testing Laboratories (ETL)-verified fire-resistant construction to last 30 minutes in temperatures of up to 1550 degrees Fahrenheit. This box has a flat key lock for security and comes with two keys in case one gets lost. Plus, this model has a carrying handle for portability if needed.
- Lock type: Keyed
- Dimensions: 6.1 inches high by 14.3 inches wide by 11.2 inches deep
- Weight: 13.32 pounds
- Material: Captured fire insulation/plastic
- Small size is ideal for hiding or transporting if necessary; built-in carrying handle
- UL-classified and ETL-verified fire-resistant construction; lasts for 30 minutes in 1550 degrees Fahrenheit
- Comes with a flat key lock as well as 2 keys for security and peace of mind
- Very small interior space; may not be able to fit a lot of valuables
Get the SentrySafe 1200 home safe at Amazon, Lowe’s, or The Home Depot.
What to Consider When Choosing a Home Safe
Home safety boxes secure some of the most valuable items in your home, so it’s important to find a reliable option. When choosing the best home safe for your home, consider its protective capabilities, size, weight, lock type, and any additional convenience or security features that are important to you.
Types of Home Safes
Before you choose a home safe for your valuables, consider the type that will work best for you and learn about the features offered with each type.
Heavy insulation in fire safes protects their contents from heat, smoke, and sometimes water. Often small and portable, many fire-resistant safes open with a simple key or combination. Fire safes are rated by the global safety consulting and certification company Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and other agencies based on the length of time the interior of the safe can remain below a certain temperature when the exterior has reached fire-level temperatures.
For best performance, place a fire safe on concrete, such as on a garage or basement floor. Most home safe brands make their fire-resistant safes withstand temperatures below 350 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 30 minutes when exposed to fire. For more sensitive contents, like computer disks or DVDs, consider a safe that will stay below 125 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, keep in mind that not all fire safes protect against burglary.
A burglary safe, constructed with thick, insulated walls; a heavy door; and other safety features, provides both theft protection and fire resistance. The most secure home safes are tough enough to keep both thieves and fire out. Some also include water-resistant features. Burglary safes are available in two main forms:
- Stand-alone safes don’t install into a wall or floor recess. They come in a variety of sizes, from small home safes to large standing units. They tend to have a heavier and sturdier build, and their thicker walls provide added protection against theft and fire.
- Wall safes install into a recess in the wall, usually between two wall studs. Similarly, floor safes sit in a recess in the floor. You can conceal these safes behind a painting or a cabinet or under a rug to add another layer of security. However, they aren’t very large and tend to have thinner walls and doors.
A gun safe is a must-have for safe gun storage at home. A sturdy lock keeps their contents from curious little fingers. Consider the safe’s intended use when making your pick, since some gun-specific safes place less focus on theft, fire, or water protection.
For keeping guns safely out of reach of children, a simple locked gun safe is a suitable choice. If burglary is your main concern, look for a gun safe with an anti-pry design intended to prevent theft.
Gun safes come in a range of sizes, from bedside handgun boxes to large rifle safes. Keep in mind that it’s always best to keep the safe out of reach of young children. Also consider the lock type. A safe with a combination or biometric lock means no keys to hide (or lose), which also means no keys for curious kids to stumble across.
Jewelry is easy fodder for burglars. Keeping jewelry tucked away in a home safe adds an extra layer of security.
While most jewelry fits in any home safe, certain features help protect precious pieces while they’re in storage. Protective shelving, such as soft carpeted or felted shelves, helps prevent scratches and dings on expensive jewelry. Hanging hooks prevent tangles in chains and other baubles.
While less secure, a locked jewelry wall armoire is one alternative. These units mount to the wall and include plenty of organizers and hanging spaces to keep jewelry beautifully displayed inside. To secure jewelry, locking armoires may deter curious children or opportunistic burglars.
Home safe ratings take into consideration both the safe’s construction and its ability to thwart forced-entry attempts. Underwriters Laboratories (UL) rates some safes, but not all safes on the market come with ratings.
Generally, the heavier and thicker the safe’s walls and doors, the higher the rating. The higher the rating, the higher the price for the safe. Common burglary ratings include:
- B-rated: Recommended for storing $5,000 or less in valuables.
- B/C-rated: For up to $10,000 in content value.
- RSC: For up to $15,000 in content value.
- C-rated: For up to $30,000 in content value.
- TL-15: Recommended for storing up to $100,000 in valuables, the safe will withstand a 15-minute attack with common tools and devices.
Size and Weight
Home safes range from small, portable options to large, freestanding units. The ideal home safe should offer enough room for the items you plan to store plus a bit of wiggle room for valuables you may acquire in the future. Stack the items you plan to store and measure the stack’s dimensions to determine the appropriate size for your home safe.
Home safes measure around 0.5 to 1.3 cubic feet, with smaller and larger options available. An average-size 1.2-cubic-foot safe weighs around 100 pounds. Although they may be tougher to set up and move around, the heavy weight of a permanent safe adds an extra layer of security against theft.
A portable home safe can be a useful accessory for renters or frequent travelers. These smaller safes are usually made to hold a few important items like passports, cash, important documents, and other small objects. A good portable safe will be reasonably lightweight, usually weighing under 30 pounds, for easier transport.
Portable home safes have one downside; they’re also easier to steal. These safes still provide an extra layer of protection against theft, plus many users have them for fire and water protection. If you don’t plan on moving the safe anytime soon, look for a more secure option. Heavy home safes that are bolted down are harder for robbers to take advantage of, and are the better option to protect against theft.
Home security safes may require a key, a combination, an electronic keypad code, or biometric data to access their contents.
Classic key or combination locks don’t require a power source. Just insert the key or enter the combination to unlock the safe. One downside of a key lock is the risk of losing the key. If you choose a safe with a combination lock, look for an option with a backup key to prevent locking yourself out.
The next step up in complexity is a home safe with an electronic keypad, for which users enter their access code into the keypad rather than turning a combination dial. Lastly, biometric locks have an advanced fingerprint sensor that reads your fingerprint and unlocks if it matches a print in the fingerprint library. Electronic keypads and biometric scanners need a power source, such as batteries or an AC outlet.
Water-resistant safes protect valuables from flooding, leaks, and other costly water damage. Consider whether waterproofing is necessary for your needs depending on your location and where the safe is stored. Water exposure may be more of a concern in flood-prone areas or for a safe stored in a basement.
Some safes protect against minor water exposure, like splashes or shallow water, while others can be completely submerged for a specified length of time. For submersion protection, consider a safe with an ETL Waterproof Verification. The independent Electrical Testing Laboratories (ETL) gives its seal of approval to safes that can withstand a certain level of water exposure for a specified timeframe.
Home safes may include a range of extra features for added security, convenience, and accessibility, including bolting hardware, adjustable shelves, protective carpet, and lighting.
- Bolting hardware helps secure a stand-alone safe to the ground. A bolted safe is extremely difficult for burglars to remove, adding an extra layer of security against theft.
- Adjustable shelves and removable shelves allow you to organize the space inside the safe.
- Protective carpet guards valuables from scratches. Some safes include protective carpeting along the interior shelves or walls. This added feature gives items like jewelry a soft place to land.
- Lighting helps you see the items inside the safe, even in dim conditions. Home safes may feature interior lighting or keypad lighting. Some electronic keypads include backlighting to make it easier to enter the code.
- Alarms add an extra layer of security by alerting anyone nearby of unauthorized safe access.
- Humidity and temperature controls help protect sensitive documents and items from moisture and temperature fluctuations.
A home safe is one part of a robust home security plan to keep you and your valuables safe. These relatively inexpensive units can give you peace of mind against theft, fire, and water damage. Read on for frequently asked questions about choosing and using your new home safe.
Q. What is a home safe made out of?
The top home safes are made of heavy steel, a half-inch-thick door, and quarter-inch walls.
Q. What should I look for when buying a safe?
Look for a safe that protects against your target concerns, whether theft, fire, water, or all three. A burglary safe should have a heavy-duty lock, anti-pry design, and a mounting option to secure the safe to a surface. For reliable fire protection and water resistance, look for an ETL-verified home safe.
Q. What is the most secure home safe?
The SentrySafe SFW123GDC Fireproof and Waterproof Safe is one of the most secure home safe options, with excellent protection against theft, fire, and water.
Q. Where is the best place to put a safe in your house?
Choose a spot that is as hidden as possible to prevent theft, but that is also accessible enough so you can grab items when you need them. Try to avoid placing the safe in an area that is at high risk for humid conditions or flooding.
Q. Can other household members use my home safe?
Yes, most safes come with several programmable codes or fingerprints. Make sure to only share access to your home safe with trusted household members.
Q. Can I store jewelry in a home safe?
Yes, a home safe is an excellent place to store valuable jewelry. Bolting the safe to a wall or floor secures jewelry better than a portable, loose safe.
Q. What happens if I lose the key to my home safe?
Most safes include a digital keypad or biometric technology for opening and a backup key. If you can’t get into your safe, start with contacting the safe manufacturer—the company should have a process in place so you can regain access to your safe.
Q. Can home safes be breached?
Yes, a home safe can be breached with enough time and effort. To deter burglars as much as possible, look for a high-quality safe that is difficult to remove from the home or that will take a long time to break into.
Q. What happens if my home safe gets stolen?
If a home safe is stolen, it is treated like other stolen property and may be difficult to recover. File a police report and contact your home insurance broker to assess next steps.
Why Trust Bob Vila
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Over the course of his decades-long career, Bob Vila has helped millions of people build, renovate, repair, and live better each day—a tradition that continues today with expert yet accessible home advice. The Bob Vila team distills need-to-know information into project tutorials, maintenance guides, tool 101s, and more. These home and garden experts then thoroughly research, vet, and recommend products that support homeowners, renters, DIYers, and professionals in their to-do lists.