Education Center

Safe deposit boxes

Safe deposit boxes provide a secure place other than your home or office to store valuables. If you decide to rent a safe deposit box, consider what size you’ll need, who else will have access, and appropriate items to keep in the box.

How to use your safe deposit box

  • Access your box regularly and keep a list of what it contains.
  • Make sure you choose the right size based on the items you plan to store. 
  • Determine who's allowed to access the box.
  • Keep the key(s) to the box in a safe place that you'll remember.

Note: The contents of a safe deposit box are not insured by the institution that provides it.

What to keep in your safe deposit box

A safe deposit box is ideal for storing items that are valuable for different reasons. Those items could include:

  • Appraisals
  • Backup data files from your PC
  • Cash
  • Coin collections
  • Confidential records
  • Contracts and business agreements
  • Copies of important documents:
    • Financial records
    • Living trust documents
    • Powers of attorney 
    • Wills
  • Household inventory (videotaped or written)
  • Items that aren't easily replaced:
    • Adoption papers
    • Birth certificates
    • Citizenship papers
    • Divorce papers
    • Family heirlooms, historical records and photos  
    • Military documents
  • Jewelry
  • List of credit card numbers
  • List of insurance policies
  • Passports, if they're seldom used
  • Real estate deeds and mortgages
  • Stamp collections
  • Stock certificates and bonds

What not to keep in your safe deposit box

It's important to remember that only you can open your safe deposit box without a court order. Items that others may need to obtain if you're not present shouldn't be kept in your box.

Avoid storing original documents such as:

  • Insurance policies
  • Living trust documents
  • Original wills
  • Other trust documents
  • Powers of attorney

The financial institution holding the box will also have guidelines telling you what not to store.

Get help

If you have questions or concerns regarding a safe deposit box you've rented from BB&T, visit that branch or call BB&T Phone24 at 800-BANK-BBT (800-226-5228).

Related topics

Everyday security

It's important to know how to apply everyday security measures—things like ATM security, protecting your mail and having an organized financial system.

Protect your computer

Your electronic devices require increasingly higher levels of security. Education, discretion and vigilance are fundamental.

Branch Banking and Trust Company, Member FDIC.