The Difference Between Safes and Lockboxes

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Safes and Lockboxes – What’s the Difference?

When it comes to securing your valuable items, you’ll be faced with a million security options to keep your valuables stored away. Safes and lockboxes are two popular options homeowners and business owners use to protect their most important possessions, but there are important differences between the two. Understand the different levels of security safes and lockboxes provide to make an informed decision about how to keep your valuables safe from damage.

Security of Safes and Lockboxes

A person's hand opening a safe


Lockboxes are more easily accessible than safes, as they are designed to be opened frequently. They usually open with a key. Safes and lockboxes are both lined with metal, but the lining in a lockbox is much thinner than a safe. This makes lockboxes less optimal in the security department since they’re easier to break into with force.

Some lockboxes can be bolted down if you don’t need them to be portable. Bolting it would help prevent a burglar from making off with your valuables and opening the box in another location. If you choose a lockbox, be sure to choose one that has this option. Just remember that lockboxes are more easily broken into no matter the location. If you already have a lockbox that can’t be bolted down, hide it somewhere secure and don’t share its location to prevent it from being stolen.


Safes tend to have combination or dial locks that are harder to break into than lockboxes. Also, they have high-grade, thick metal on the inside to prevent access by force. They’re more durable and sturdier than lockboxes, with some offering fire protection and drop protection. You can also get your safe bolted down, so it would be impossible for a robber to carry the safe out of your house.

Size and Weight of Safes and Lockboxes


Because lockboxes are generally smaller than safes and are made with thinner metal, safes and lockboxes vary greatly in size and weight. Lockboxes generally weigh less than even the smallest safes. Lockboxes come in many sizes – from just big enough to fit a key to one that can hold a stack of documents. Because they’re usually lightweight, they’re easily portable, so keep in mind what you’d be using the lockbox for to determine size.


Safes come in many shapes and sizes, but they’re always heavy. Safes are generally much heavier than lockboxes because safes are made of higher-grade, thicker steel than lockboxes. There are safes as small as shoeboxes and as big as water heaters – it’s up to you to decide how big you want your safe to be. Just remember: the bigger the safe, the harder it will be to install and remove if you need to relocate it.

Items You Should Store Inside Safes and LockboxesPerson opening a lockbox


Safes and lockboxes have different levels of security. You should be mindful to store less valuable items in a lockbox. Lockboxes can easily be broken into, so it’s best to store items in lockboxes if you intend on taking them out soon.

Lockboxes aren’t good long-term security options when it comes to storing valuables.  For example, people often use lockboxes to store cash at fundraising events or garage sales. Lockboxes are also a safe option if you need to lock up a gun to keep it away from children while still having easy access to it in an emergency.


Safes are designed to protect valuable personal items, so you should feel confident storing your prized possessions inside.

Some valuables you should store inside safes include:

  • Firearms
  • Highly-Sensitive Records
  • High-Value Jewelry
  • Important Documents
  • Large Sums of Cash
  • And More

Price Point of Safes and Lockboxes

Because safes and lockboxes are designed with different grades of metal, they vary in price point. Safes are generally more expensive than lockboxes, ranging from $50 to thousands of dollars, depending on size. Fireproof safes are a more expensive option if you want to protect your valuables from heat damage. Lockboxes typically range from $10 to $50 because they are made with cheaper metal than safes.

Remember that getting your safe or lockbox installed into your home or business will present an extra cost.

If you’re looking for a short-term storage option that doesn’t need high security, go with a lockbox. If you want long-term protection for your valuables, safes are a much more secure option.

Safe Installation and Repair from Alford Safe & Lock in Baton Rouge

Alford Safe & Lock in Baton Rouge offers a variety of safes for you to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a basic safe or one with advanced security features, we have you covered with a selection of high-quality safes in all sizes. Knowledgeable locksmiths are ready to answer any questions you might have about your home or business security. Visit Alford Safe & Lock today to find the best safe for your needs.