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Floor Safes: The Best Protection Against Theft, Fire and Water

Every time you leave the house, you make sure all the doors and windows are locked. You have timers on your lights so they come on at unpredictable times to make it look like you're home when you're not. You used to have that key-hiding hedgehog in your flower bed, but you've upgraded to storing your spare key with your neighbors. Unfortunately, these precautions don't always work.

If a thief did make his way into your home, what would he find? Are the guns in the closet and the jewelry in the sock drawer? Or will he be surprised by just clothes and socks? He will be, if you have taken the precaution that really works- installing a floor safe.

Floor safes are used by gas stations, fast food restaurants, stores and home owners, and are the single best protector of your valuables. American Security (AMSEC) is the leading manufacturer of floor safes, and has been in business and innovating the safe industry for 60 years.

AMSEC's Square Door Floor Safe features a heavy duty dead bar behind the hinge, which prevents the removal of the door even if the hinges are removed by a would-be burglar. It also has a spring loaded relocking device which is activated by a punching attack. The lock and relocks have 1 million possible combinations, and are protected by a large carburized hard plate. It is part of the BRUTE safe series, which meets and exceeds the requirements of the Insurance Offices Manual of Burglary Insurance.

My favorite of American Security floor safes is the Mini-Brute B400. It's big enough to store everything I need kept safe, and like the Square Door safe, has the lock and relock device, and this is protected by steel guards. There's an optional baffled drop slot in the door for deposits, and the door itself is a convenient, reversible lift-out. The universal jamb design of the body allows the door to be positioned in all four directions. Concealment is simple- the body has a flush cover plate so it can easily be covered by a rug or carpet and be unnoticeable.

Their STAR Tube safes are one of the most popular safes for many different business and homes, and have been for over 50 years. When properly installed in a concrete floor, it provides maximum protection from not only burglary, but also fire and water damage.

While floor safes are the most reliable way to ensure the protection of your valuables, it is still wise to take steps to keep a burglar out of your home and away from your safe all together (because who wants a burglar in their house, even if he won't get anything?)

Your home should mimic your safe; strengthen the outside so that nothing can penetrate it. Really do remember to lock your windows and doors! According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, close to 30% of burglaries don't even involve a break in- the thief just gets straight in through an unlocked window or door. Have a lock no one can break- include at least one deadbolt on each door.

Just like you wouldn't put a big sign on your safe saying, "This is my safe where all my valuables are kept!" you shouldn't leave a sign out for your house- take your name off your mailbox and bring your mail in as quickly as possible, to prevent robbers from getting your name off of it. They can call information to get your phone number (they already have your address), and call to make sure you're not home before they enter.

Another way to prevent your house from drawing a burglar's attention is to turn down the volume of your phone; a long, loud answered ring is a filigreed invitation to burglars since it almost always means you're not home.

Disguise your home- just as you put your safe in the floor and effectively conceal it, make your home look occupied. Leave a few lights on in different rooms and then make sure to close the blinds, or else anyone peeking in will be able to see that they're empty.

You wouldn't leave the key or combination right next to your safe, but often we effectively do this to our houses; it you're using a ladder to get down a hornet's nest or hang up lights, bring it inside when you're done! Leaving a ladder out makes it super easy for a criminal to get in through an upstairs window.

No one wants to have to deal with a burglary, thankfully all you need to do is take some common sense precautions and do some research on floor safes to find the one you need.