NEW WEALTH: Luxury Underground Bunkers
After chatting with a family member the other day, it became very clear to me just how adamant more and more people are becoming about creating underground bunkers. It isn’t a fad after all. It’s a new form of housing and it is seemingly here to stay.
Perhaps ideas of impending doom are to blame or just our never-ending, unstable economy. Either way, a growing number of individuals have begun researching and experimenting with life in an underground bunker. When my family member brought up the idea, this type of living only then became real to me. His rationale for the underground bunker encompassed protecting his family, especially his children, in the event of a nuclear attack or the like. There are indeed increasing talks around the globe of nuclear attacks in upcoming years, but there really has not been any significant alarms.
Luxury Underground Bunkers
On April 24th, 2014, CBS Local News interviewed Ralph Henrich of New Jersey who purchased a luxury bunker (or bomb shelter) to protect his family. The article stated:
But as one bunker promotional video shows, today’s backyard survival bunker looks more like a five-star resort, equipped with everything from an indoor pool and state of the art movie theater, to a dog run and even an interactive classroom — all underground. “The overall scope of the project was to create a wow experience for the homeowner. So that they could live here and enjoy the facility and not just survive,” said luxury bunker creator. Survive whatever may come in comfort, whether it be a natural disaster or a future terror attack... You want to make it as comfortable for the psychology,” said Ralph Henrich, who bought a bunker. (CBS Local, 2014)
Henrich had paid to reserve space in an underground luxury bunker for himself, his wife, and their three kids, costing him $50,000 per adult and $35,000 per child. Some luxury bunkers are fully equipped with chef’s kitchens, lap pools and fitness centers. Although he purchased a luxury bunker, other individuals are building their bunkers from scratch.
Bunkers are generally made out of shipping materials, which is usually already framed with metal. It is very difficult to build a structural frame for a bunker underground. Entry and exit ways are then cut out and framed within the structure. The home is then fitted with walls, stairs, electricity, plumbing, etc. Some bunkers have multiple stories. Adequate ventilation is a requirement for bunkers, since air below ground is minimal. Finally, the residence is fully furnished and ready for occupancy.
Ironically enough, there are not many Federal regulations for underground bunkers. Bomb shelters are not considered “real estate” since they are built below land lots that are already registered with the municipality. They do not impact the lot size of house or buildings. Bunkers built below land are not taxed separately from the land. Therefore, home owners of bunkers only pay taxes for the land and property above the earth’s surface. If a home owner sells or rents the bunker below his property, the new buyer or renter can technically live property tax-free. Utilities, especially for ventilation and air filtration, are usually the bulk of one's costs.
In the 1960s, when fear of nuclear fallout was a significant threat, many homeowners built tiny bomb shelters. The regulations then included that the shelter needed to have seven-foot-high ceilings, vinyl flooring and be able to hold seven people. A tax exemption on properties was also offered back then based on how many people could fit in the bunker. The tax exemption reduced property values by $100 for each person to reside in the bunker. To qualify for the exemption, a bomb shelter must contain 80 cubic feet per occupant and admit no more than 1 percent of the radiation outside. Gen. F. W. Farrell, the director of the New York Civil Defense Commission in the 1960s, said that “For all practical purposes, this new law means that virtually every homeowner in our state can construct a fallout shelter without having his local real estate taxes increased because, in most cases, home fallout shelters can be constructed for less than $100 per person.”
House Above with Bunker Below
Today the tax exemption is still available to owners of bomb shelters below their homes. Bunkers remained uninspected by governments today. You only need to build your bunker to live in it tax-free.
Bunkers allow families the secuirty and protection needed in times of crisis. With threats of global economic fallout, nuclear warfare, meteorite collisions and infectuous disease outbreaks looming across the globe, owning a bomb shelter offers individuals a sense of safety and preparedness. Bunkers can even be used to rent out, entertain or enjoy right now. All in all, bunkers provide individuals with hope and a peace of mind.
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