After Russia recently raised the threat of using nuclear weapons in its conflict against Ukraine, sales of backyard bunkers jumped. Those threats also led to corresponding search spikes on terms such as “fallout shelter,” “bunker,” and “underground bunker.”
During the Cold War, bomb shelters were considered a near necessity by forward-thinking homebuilders. After the demise of the Soviet Union, these backyard bunkers were considered relics of a bygone era. They became the domain of doomsday preppers and homeowners with apocalyptic visions.
As noted by the agent representing the Las Vegas Underground House (still available for $5.9 million), it’s doubtful that any home could sustain a direct nuclear blast. However, with well-built structures, air purification systems, and plenty of supplies, subterranean bunker dwellers have a fighting chance.
But the bunkers’ recent resurgence isn’t simply about geopolitical concerns. In the Midwest, they can provide protection from devastating tornadoes. And as climate events continue to wreak havoc across previously “safe” parts of the country, these underground environments are a hedge against calamity.
Scouring nationwide listings, we found five homes for sale outfitted with underground shelters. For a full look, just scroll on down.
Undergrounded: Way out in the Mojave Desert, the Joshua Tree area has been favored by rugged individualists and preppers for decades.
So it’s no surprise that this compound—built in 1951 during the Atomic Age fervor—has a cement-block bunker buried beneath it. It’s a three-room basement that’s wired and plumbed.
The listing suggests it could be used as a shelter, storage space out of the desert heat, second living space, “or just a cool conversation space for when your friends visit.” The latter seems to make the most sense, as the skylight in one of the rooms provides natural light (but dubious protection).
The main house has three bedrooms and two baths. The 3.4-acre property also comes with an assortment of outbuildings, including an aviary, workshop, and various porches and patios.
‘Security in an uncertain world’: This massive 14,000-square-foot mansion features a 5,000-square-foot underground bunker “built for maximum security.”
It’s also built for maximum sustainability as it comes with a greenhouse complete with soil boxes and grow lighting.
Above ground, the 323-acre property is sustainable, luxurious, and safe. It features video surveillance throughout the property, a 9-acre private lake that’s stocked, plus rolling timberland full of wildlife.
The multilevel main residence has opulent features like marble and hardwood floors, a two-story closet with a winding staircase in the primary suite, and a home theater with stadium seating.
Playful above, serious below: Indian Creek Farm is the perfect family compound for nearly any scenario. Spanning 14 acres, the property includes a professionally designed miniature golf course, a resort-style pool, and a tennis court.
Underground, there’s a fortified bunker complete with a turret. It is stocked with food, water, and bedding.
Back on terra firma, the 3,068-square-foot home features three bedrooms and fancy finishes throughout, including a chef’s kitchen.
It’ll take a village: You’d never suspect this unassuming suburban home has a huge bunker that can accommodate 20 to 60 people.
This subterranean bunker has its own microgrid and comes with 18 bunks, a primary bedroom, two kitchens, and multiple bathrooms.
The 1-acre property includes a 4,500-square-foot, five-bedroom home and a 2,800-square-foot detached garage with a studio apartment. In the backyard, there’s a custom pool and spa with waterfalls, a grotto, and a concrete rock bar with a barbecue and kitchen.
Well-hidden: Self-sufficiency is the name of the game on this Southern Colorado cabin property that spans 148 acres. There’s a “nuclear bunker complete with battery-powered lights” out there somewhere, the listing notes. But it fails to give any more details—perhaps discretion is the best policy.
There’s a well, water tanks, and power sources throughout the property. A huge, temperature-controlled barn there is currently set up for hydroponic growing and is equipped with a fire compression system.
For everyday living, there’s a 4,312-square-foot, three-bedroom main house with a wrap-around porch. For recreation, there’s a full-sized shooting range with gun storage.
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