How Much Gold Can I Keep at Home?

Owning gold coins or even bars is great for you as an investor especially if you are looking to diversify your portfolio.  That said, it is important to remember that storing gold involves some level of risk because thieves would certainly want to get their hands on your precious metals more so if you are keeping them in your home.

Ultimately, you can keep as much gold at home as you want. However, there are several factors that should be considered when determining how much gold to keep in your house.

We are going to get into those factors in this article, but let us deal with the elephant in the room – just how much gold should you keep in your humble abode?

How Much Gold should be kept at Home?

Legally speaking there are no restrictions as to the amount or quantities of gold you can buy and keep in the United States. Previously, between 1933 to 1975, you needed a special license to own any form of gold bullion. However, from January 1 1975, those restrictions were lifted and now it is possible to buy and store the metal without restrictions or licensing of any kind.

While there is no federal law that controls how you buy or sell your precious metals, limits do exist for those engaging in gold IRA rollovers and investments.

In such cases, you are required to have your gold handled by a custodian and so in that case you are not allowed to keep any of it at home. Other than in such situations, you can safely transact in as much gold as you can safely store.

It all boils down to the kind of space you have available for such use in your home. Let’s put this into perspective.

According to Consumer Reports, the average American owns a 1.2 cubic feet home safe. 

Assuming you fall in that category, your 1.2 cubic-feet home safe can safely accommodate a foot high of neatly arranged gold bars. That’s slightly over 300 bars of 32.15 troy-ounce gold!

The present value of such a staggering amount of gold would be $17 million. And that’s just in one average-sized safe.

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What Do the Experts Recommend?

In an interview with CNBC, Mike Clark the former President of the Diamond State Depository LLC warned about the dangers of storing gold on your own. “If you lose it, it’s gone” Clark added in the 2011 interview. Keeping Mike’s words in mind, it’s only fair to say that if you’re going to keep any precious assets at home, keep only as much as you’d afford to lose.

You don't want to put all your lifetime savings in the form of gold at home only for burglars to break in and make away with it as you watch.

That said, there are quite a few measures you can take to ensure your gold is safe within your apartment or mansion. Below we discuss some of those.

How to Store Gold at Home

Let’s face it, keeping gold at home can be risky. But even then, there are numerous benefits to having some of this precious within an arm’s reach – just in case.

You see, keeping all your assets within government-controlled facilities can leave you totally vulnerable in case of an economic collapse or government collapse. And while such events are highly unlikely in modern times, it’s always wise to be one step ahead of the game – and you can do that by keeping valuable assets like gold in a place where you can access them without restrictions.

The good thing with gold is that it has real value not paper value. So, even in the event of economic collapse, it’d still have value unlike stocks and paper money.

And now, here are some subtle ways to store gold at home without exposing yourself to high levels of risk.

Put it in a fireproof safe that's bolted down to the floor of your basement – Putting your gold in a fireproof safe is an excellent way to keep it safe.

The best way to do this is to put it in a fireproof safe that is bolted down to the floor of your basement. This will ensure that no matter what happens, the gold is protected. You can also put your gold in a vault that has been specifically built by experts who know how to keep the items safe from fire and water damage.

Put it in an old sock and hide it in a place that isn’t too obvious – This method involves using an old sock and wrapping the gold inside of it. The best way to do this is to purchase a new pair of socks, cut off both ends, and then put the gold in between them. This will allow you to hide the precious metal in plain sight and affordably without any trouble at all.

Although this method is only practical for small quantities of gold, it’s surely worth a try.

Put it in an old cookie tin and bury it in your backyard – You can also put your gold in an old cookie tin and bury it in your backyard. Most burglars do not have time to waste and will not have the time to waste digging for gold in your backyard unless someone who knows your little secret sends them your way.

All you want to do is ensure that the spot where the gold is buried is as inconspicuous as possible. You don’t want to put obvious markers lest they arouse someone’s curiosity.

Buy a box with a combination lock and put the gold inside – One of the safest ways to store gold at home is in a metal box with a combination lock. This way, you get to protect your gold from physical damage and theft.

If you do not have a metal box or have trouble finding one with a combination lock, you could also use an old jewelry case. 

Now, before you buy a metal box, there are some things to consider. First, you need to know what kind of product you are looking for. You can opt to buy a cheap plastic jewelry box or dig deeper into your pocket and get one made from resilient metal or solid wood. If you want the latter, make sure it's made of hardwood and not soft pine.

The size of the box depends on how much gold you have. For example, if you have a typical 32 troy-ounce gold bar, then one small metal container will be enough to store it in. However, if your gold is large in size, then you should buy a bigger box.

When it comes to buying these boxes online, there are many options available at different prices and designs. If you want something simple, then go for a classic design where the lock is located on top of the box lid.

After that, you want to hide this kind box at least 3-layers deep. For instance, you can keep it in your home's basement but under a floor that's covered with a carpet or floorboards.

Do them dirty with the decoy method – This method involves playing with the psychology of the burglar. You see, whenever a burglar breaks into a house with the intention of stealing precious stuff, they tend to leave hastily immediately they think they have secured the loot.

You can use this information in your favor by keeping fake gold bars and coins in areas where robbers would ordinarily ransack. We’re talking about your closet, under the bed, in your home safe among other obvious spots.

This way, the robber will pounce on the fake stuff first and make away with it leaving the real gold untouched in whatever other place you might have hidden it. Clever, right?

Benefits of Storing Gold at Home

Storing gold at home is a great way to protect your wealth. Here are some benefits of storing gold at home:

  • You know exactly where your gold is stored. You can view it, touch it and keep it in the same place for years. You don’t have to worry about storage fees or having someone else handle your precious metal.
  • If you decide not to sell, you can always withdraw your gold from storage whenever you want. You won’t need to worry about any paperwork or red tape getting in the way of selling back your gold when you want to buy something else instead.
  • It's easier than ever before for private individuals like yourself to buy and sell physical gold and silver bullion coins or bars outside of a bank or broker-dealer. In fact, you can do so from home by using a secure online platform with our easy-to-use interface that makes buying, selling, and storing physical precious metals as simple as possible.
  • The biggest benefit that comes with home storage of gold is that it provides you with a way to access this precious resource even in the event of economic collapse and social chaos. Let’s face it, even the most stable governments can collapse and in case of such events those with precious assets like gold can easily buy their way to safety.
  • It also goes without saying that keeping some of this precious metal at home can be a good way to diversify your investment portfolio. Unlike stocks and bonds, fewer things are likely to go wrong with your home-stored gold provided you keep it safe.

Drawbacks of Storing Gold at Home

If you decide to keep gold at home, there are several drawbacks that you should know about before making this decision including:

Security – Gold is often stolen from homes because thieves know that people use it as an investment or as part of their wealth. Thieves may also target homes because they know that homeowners have other valuables inside their homes such as jewelry, electronics, and cash. 

If you decide to keep your gold at home, make sure that it is properly secured so that thieves cannot get access to it easily if they break into your house.

Storage – You must also consider how much space will be required to store your gold safely at home. Some types of precious metals require special storage methods such as temperature-controlled vaults or safes with biometric locks. 

These items take up valuable space in your home and can be difficult to move around when needed.

Other Places You Can Store Gold

Are you wondering whether there are other ways to store your gold? The good news is that there are. Of course, the top choices would be banks or depositories so let’s get into that.

1. Banks

We trust banks with our money, why not trust them with our gold as well? The way to keep your precious metals in the bank is by renting a safe box. The average cost of renting a bank safe box is $60 per annum although this may vary depending on its size.

The good thing with this approach is that it gets the bank’s built-in safety systems working for you. On the downside, though, you can only access your gold during the bank’s business hours.

What’s more, banks typically don’t insure precious metals stored in safe boxes meaning you have to incur this cost on your own. As you can imagine all these costs can eat into the value of your assets.

2. Depositories

This is probably the safest way to store gold. In fact, of all the methods we have discussed, this is the only one that’s IRS-approved. So, if you’re buying gold as part of an IRA, then you have to work with a certified depository as it is illegal to attempt to keep such gold in private storage.

Likewise, if you have gold that isn’t part of an IRA you can ship it to a depository for storage. The main advantage of that approach is that such facilities provide insurance coverage along with segregated storage facilities that ensure that whatever gold bars or coins you send to them are the exact same ones you'll get when withdrawing.

That said, unlike home storage, gold stored in depositories is only accessible during the facilities’ official operating hours.

Conclusion

When it comes to storing gold at home, the answer is that it depends on the country you live in, and the type of gold you want to keep at home.

Fortunately, the laws are quite lenient for folks who intend to take this approach in the US. However, there's a weakness in this strategy and that is in securing the assets in the longterm. Luckily, as we have discussed in this blog post, there are quite a few things you can do to keep your bars and coins safe within the four corners of your property.