Welcome to the Safety Deposit Association
Following the start of the financial crisis in 2008 banks world-wide have been required to significantly restructure their business model, not only so as to comply with a new regime of stricter regulation, but also because of a need to streamline for profit.
One of the areas of bank operations that was thought not to fit within this new business model was that of Safety Deposit Boxes and accordingly, during the later part of 2012 through to now, major banks made announcements to the effect that they would no longer be offering this service.
The result was that many thousands of people have been instructed to move their valuables away from traditional Bank locker/box facilities, but to where?
In 2012 there were 8 privately owned safety deposit centres, all of similar nature and structure. The largest of these facilities could house approximately 8,000 lockers of various sizes, and the smallest being able to hold some 700 identically sized lockers.
The beginning of 2013 saw in excess of 15 new safety deposit centres proposing to open up, but interestingly these new sites were not going to just house the average of 2,000 – 3,000 lockers. They were going to be much larger, with the average size potential increasing to 10,000 lockers.
Locker/box services offered by the banks and Private Sector would have fallen under The Financial Conduct Authority, (formally the FSA, Financial Services Authority), and /or the banking codes of practice. The Financial Conduct Authority still do regulate and offer guidance, and must be approached before a safety deposit centre is open, however this is predominately in respect to Money Laundering.
As a result of all of the foregoing those that now wish to conduct business in the safety deposit box/locker business arena have little or no framework within which to operate, and hence in early 2013 the Safety Deposit Association was born.
The Association is a self-regulatory body which is based on best practise, run by those in the safety deposit industry, for the benefit of both the industry and its customers. Its purpose is to offer industry guidance not only to all its members but also to customers, and provide a robust and fair framework within which to operate.