Demand for 'safe rooms' has jumped

Secret Safe Room

(WMC-TV) – Is your door locked? Are your windows shut? Is the alarm set?

If you are really serious about home security, you may not need all of that.

According to Dan Perkins, owner of Hidden Safes in Bartlett, the demand for custom built 'safe rooms' to hide people has recently jumped.

Today's home security looks like a steel room, re-enforced with a fire-resistant barrier. And if you need it to be bullet proof, armour plating is available too.

"We were making them before they were even called safe rooms," Dan Perkins, owner of Hidden Safes, Inc. said. "We didn't know what to call them, we called them anti-terrorist vaults."

For 32 years, Hidden Safes in Bartlett has custom built secret spaces for homeowners to hide their valuables.

"It's growing, fast," Dan Perkins said. "The movie Panic Room helped. The fear, unrest, civil unrest.  I hear that a lot."

Perkins says it's become somewhat normal for new larger homes to have safe rooms, even if the neighbors don't know about it.

"There are a select type of individual who want to be the only ones who know about it," said Perkins. "If you build it during the construction of the home, way too many people know about it."

Perkins and his team dismantled a 13x7x8 safe room to ship it out of town and into a basement.

"There will be guns down here guns above it, same thing on this wall, guns on the bottom, guns on the top," Perkins said. "This will be a pistol rack--pistols floor to ceiling, pistols above the door, and it has two deep shelves that are adjustable up and down both sides."

This kind of protection can cost between 15 and 50 thousand dollars. So if it's a burglar you're most worried about, stick to your alarm.

But if it's the end of the world or something more sinister that keeps you up at night, this may be your solution.

"There are people doing that now, doomsday shelters, where you're going to be in there for awhile six months or a year," said Perkins. "That's going to be big, it's going to be underground and it's going to cost hundreds of thousands, and it's going to have everything in it, food--you name it everything."

Perkins says he doesn't know anyone in the Mid-South who has a so-called doomsday shelter. At least he hasn't been hired to build one here, yet.

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