By Gene and Katie Hamilton
You can get a safety deposit box at a bank, but home safes are becoming a popular alternative in many households because of their convenience. Install one in the wall of a closet or behind a wall-hung picture, and it offers safekeeping for jewelry, documents and other valuables. Since it’s in your home, which doesn’t operate on banker’s hours, you have access to your secret stash at any time, reason enough for some people who want their hidden assets safe at home.
A typical home safe is a flush-mounted 15-inch square unit that’s designed to fit into the recess between standard wall studs. A carpenter will charge $450, which includes the safe and labor to install it, but you can make the installation for $250, the cost of the safe, and save 44 percent.
DIY Hassle Alert
When deciding on a location for a wall safe, choose an inside wall. Be careful to avoid cutting into any plumbing or electrical lines. To do that, check out the area on both sides of the wall and see that there’s no electrical outlets or plumbing fixtures there
To make the installation, you’ll need a drill, screwdriver, keyhole or drywall saw, and carpenter’s level. An electronic stud finder will come in handy. You’ll also need some nails and shims to level and adjust the safe in the wall opening.
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See the instructions at Home Fixated
How to Install a Hidden Wall Safe.
The bottom line: compare the price of a contractor’s bid to install a wall safe with what it costs to do it yourself and make your decision. You adjust the cost to where you live by adding your ZIP Code.
Improvement and Repair Cost Updated 2019
The cost and time data is generated by averaging labor and material data from annually updated cost books used by contractors and refined by the authors'
experience remodeling 13 houses. They are authors of 20 home improvement books and Do It Yourself or Not, a weekly column syndicated by Tribune Content
Agency. The national cost can be adjusted by ZIP Code.