Personal Finance 

Best Places to Hide Money At Home

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Ceramic Piggy BankI had a conversation over the weekend with a friend of mine who likes to keep a little bit of cash at home in the event of a zombie apocalypse. As I reminded him that zombies don’t take US dollars, I thought a little to how we like to keep some cash on hand at home too. My friend was talking a thousand dollars or two, we keep maybe a hundred bucks. While he was trying to up his chances of survival, we do it to avoid an unnecessary trip to the ATM if we find our wallet or purse a little light one day.

That led me to wonder where the best places to hide you rmoney at home was and fortunately the web did not disappoint.

First, there’s is no limit to human ingenuity. Just spend a few minutes looking through the slideshow WalletPop put together on the craziest places people hide their money and you’ll see things like inside a fake i-beam, the cookie jar, their attic, a fake roll of toilet paper, under the litter box, mason jar buried in the garden, and my favorite, an empty can hidden in the pantry. Hopefully all those people can get to their cash when the zombies start rolling in.

Now that you have a list of potential places, you need a strategy. Putting all of your cash in one secret spot works as long as the thief doesn’t find it. If they find it, then they have all of your money. Why not spread your loot over several secret hiding spots? If a thief is short on time and starts flipping over everything, they may quit after finding one stash. Thieves don’t have a ton of time so giving them a little offering like that may stop them from finding all the pieces.

Next, remember why you’re keeping the money at home and be smart about how much. We want to avoid the ATM so we keep less than $100 at home. We could keep $1,000 but that would be way more than we need, plus it’s interest we’re not earning by not having it in a savings account. So keep the amount logical, how much cash do you really need at home? Probably not as much as you think. Remember that in the event of a fire, you don’t want to feel compelled to save your money.

I feel obligated to point out this story of a woman throwing away a mattress that, unknown to her, held a million dollars of her mother’s savings. Saving money is good, saving a million dollars is great, but saving it in your mattress is a horrible idea.

Lastly, don’t be so creative that you forget where you hid it. 🙂

(Photo: alancleaver)

{ 101 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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101 Responses to “Best Places to Hide Money At Home”

  1. Ron says:

    We keep $1000 cash at home in the event of a man made or natural disaster that might prevent normal banking and credit card transactions for a few days. I also left a notation with our wills about the location of the money and not to keep looking for more!

  2. Josh says:

    We never really kept anything around the house in an “emergency zombie fund.” Mainly, a member of my family has a habit that leads to theft from others, to include family. However, I’ve always wanted a safe, because of that James Bond feeling someone mentioned above! 🙂 By the way, has anyone else thought that any criminals reading this just received a slew of ideas to check the next time they rob someone…although, what kind of crook reads a financial website?! Final thought, don’t forget to shoot the zombies in the head! Otherwise they will keep on coming and you’re wasting the 9mm or shotgun ammo…

    • Me-iThink? says:

      This is one of the most hilarious conversations I’ve ever come across! I have been reading all of the comments and giggling out loud all the way through! Too funny!!

      My husband, the zombie survivalist expert, got a kick out of it too!

  3. Chris says:

    I know that if I put a $50 spot in my wife’s purse a burglar would never find it…

  4. odd one says:

    My husband believes that having a safe (especially a monster one) will just tempt the villanous …er…zombies…. to return for a hostage situation. There’s no way I wouldn’t open the safe if there was a gun pointed at my child. Are we just overly paranoid?

    That said, the best theft deterent is an unkempt front yard & unwashed windows with a rust bucket sitting in the driveway. Zombies are another thing 🙂

  5. Jim says:

    Ask yourself one question – what happens to the cash if the house burns down? Earthquake? Flood, Tornado? This may help narrow your selection down to a fireproof safe, concrete wall or buried in the basement. The latter suggestions should still include safe options. The basement option should be carefully thought out in the event of water leaks or floods.

  6. Justme says:

    For me, I’ve used several over the years, but one of my favorites is still to take a drawer out and tape an envelope (whatever size you want) INSIDE where the drawer goes on the top. It’s easy to get to without removing the drawer once you’ve got it in there, but well hidden if anybody goes looking. For years, my wife was very near my “stash o’ cash” without knowing it when she was putting laundry away.

  7. Ruspola says:

    Well it seems you’d have to be able to think like a burglar to have any decent chance. Choosing a safe isnt exactly a cheap option if you want to keep $500 dollars for emergencies.
    I think putting the money inside a rug and stitching it may be something worth considering. If you make it too easy get at it you’ll probably end up using it for yourself as it will be too tempting.

  8. daenyll says:

    I keep an emergency $20 in my wallet stashed away from all the rest of my cash, and I would prefer a hidey hole carved out of loose spot in a wall/floor in a closet or somewhere that’s likely to be overlooked. Unless they literally start tearing the place apart they’d prolly miss it.

  9. Awhile back I saw a professional thief being interviewed on 60 Minutes or 20/20 or some show like that. He said there was no place you could hide something that he couldn’t find it. He said “That was my job. No matter how creative you think your hiding spot is I’ve already seen it 1,000 times.”

    He said your best bet is to leave a small stash in an obvious spot like your sock drawer. That way when the thief finds it he may assume that was your big stash and leave before finding the rest.

  10. Christina says:

    Funny, I usually hide my money in my closet (pockets of my clothes I seldom wear) and sometimes I forgot that I hid it there…it’s good in a sense that when I badly needed money I remember where I hid but when I just want to get it to buy something…I can’t find it…lol…it’s an effective strategy for me…

  11. Cheap Bastard says:

    I suggest dollar coins from the US mint for the purpose of storing cash. Coins can take more heat and other extremes, and they also help make the safe heavier.. or perhaps add some needed weight to cheap furniture w/ hollow legs.

    BTW, I fill unused space in my safe with iron free-weights, to make it even harder to walk off with.

  12. Izalot says:

    I like the idea of splitting extra money until two areas with a small amount in an obvious area. I would stash my money in a hollowed out book or an unused board game, both of which I have tons of.

  13. eric says:

    I was gonna say….if you make it too good, you might forget where you put the money! D’oh! 🙂

  14. Anonymous says:

    So… you are advising about the best places to hide your money at home.

  15. DTCGuy says:

    Keeping cash at home is vital if a disaster comes. If power is out you can’t get it from an ATM or Bank. I would keep a bit more that $100, say $300, because whatever else you may not be able to get cash can always find a way to get you what you need.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I kept a 100 in the first aid kit in my car. Foolish me, told my wife when she went on vacation where it was. She went shopping on vaction with the 100. Now I don’t keep money other than in my wallet.

  17. perris housewife says:

    File size or bigger fire safe which is very important just for the birth certs etc and all the other papers we seem to have and need now. So while you have that you may as well have some cash in it as well. Not too much granted maybe $1000, cos in the event of a fire you will need cash for hotel, clothes etc. Stashing any more around the house seems too risky, I like the car thing though that is great.

  18. Paul says:

    Never have a huge obvious safe (even if it is 800lbs and bolted) in plain view thinking you can’t be robbed. A big costly safe that looks like it is guarding millions only gives burglers the incentive to come back while you are home, hold you up at gun point, and rob you all the way to the poor house! Get a fake wall outlet and keep about $1000.00 in it. That will be enough to get you through a bad emergency.

  19. linda says:

    when i travel or even go out in the town i put my cash directly inside my bra cup. safe and simple. never lost anything.

  20. Consumer007 says:

    While it would take a little while to retrieve, assuming you have 20 or more books at home, put sets of bills between pages throughout a variety of the books, and if it makes it easier, have a certain page number tied to a number of meaning or something you love, and keep adding to the collections over time. Put no more than a certain small amount in each book.

    When the rainy day comes, your library is your treasure.

    This also is 1. One of the last places a burglar would look in a hurry and 2. way too much work for the burglar to do in a hurry and 3. solves the problem of eggs in one basket if you have the books in various places around the home.

    The point of failure is fire, be sure to add enough on your fire insurance coverage to include lost cash assets.

  21. sudharson says:

    dai vennaae,
    it is not so easy to hide money when u dont hve it. we can easily arrange a SWAT team to keep the money safe. the best option is to keep it in the place where u can hide it. no one should be able to see it. it is highly confidential.

  22. Cindy says:

    Never attempt to hide money you don’t want to be found in your own space or with anyone familiar with you! That’s just plain stupid, especially if you are wealthy & trying to hide the money for a specific reason!
    Have a Contract with someone who will protect your cash for any length of time for a certain %, this way it stays out of your familiar surroundings!
    Then when you are ready to get the cash back, have it wired to your offshore account!

  23. Cindy says:

    If you are talking about hiding personal Emergency cash like $1,000. You can put the cash in an airtight zip lock baggie & put it inside a newly cemented brick which is very easy to make & break at anytime.

  24. Lucienne says:

    I never hide money or keep it at home. I lose EVERYTHING. As for the Zombie thing i’m an Angel freak,and according to the show the only way to kill a zombie is to cut off its head.

  25. Ann says:

    I have always hidden some extra money in my Tampax box in my bathroom. But now that I am going through menopause, gotta find another place!

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