They always say that you should “try before you buy.” But when it comes to purchasing a house, that’s not really an option—and plenty of new homeowners are greeted with unwelcome surprises as a result!
Sometimes, though, those little surprises can turn out to be something awesome. At least that’s what happened to one homeowner as he was examining the blueprints of his new house. He had no idea that the discovery he was about to make on his own property would end up being a huge boon that he never saw coming…
Sometimes when you purchase a home, you discover a surprise that you never knew existed when you initially checked out the property. When Jon Simms from Tucson, Arizona, was looking through the blueprints of his new home in 2015, he discovered there was something else hidden on his property… a big something.
The blueprints showed Jon that there was an extra room in his house. The only problem? It was hidden! So, he did the only thing he could think to do: he grabbed a shovel and headed to the spot marked off on his blueprints.
The house was built in the 1960s—and plans for the mysterious room were submitted right along with the ones for the home. Jon would’ve never known about the room if the plans had gotten lost, and considering how long ago the house was built, it’s a wonder they stayed intact!
For the first few feet of his exploration, Jon dug up nothing but dirt. He wasn’t sure how deep he’d have to dig before he found something. Sure enough, not long after, his shovel head made contact with something metal. What was there?
As Jon cleared out more and more of the dirt, he stared in awe at what had been hiding in his yard for years. After doing some research, he learned that he’d hit the entrance to that extra room on his blueprints. He knew it could only be one thing…
Jon uncovered the entrance to a fallout shelter! With the help of some friends, he pried the lid off and peered down into it. Having been abandoned for years, it looked like it was in great disrepair. As excited as he was, Jon was also nervous about what was potentially lurking below…
It took nearly the entire team to lift the lid using an iron bar for leverage. Whoever built this shelter made sure it wasn’t easy to break into in case they needed to barricade themselves inside.
After the lid was finally off, Jon peered down into a dark spiral stairwell which led into another room off to one side. There were pieces of metal debris and plenty of dirt strewn all over…
He carefully made his way down the rusted spiral staircase. He had to be extremely careful with each step, as the stairs could have given out under any amount of weight. He made it to the bottom safely and stared at the entryway.
He guessed that this small metal nozzle brought fresh air into the space. If this passage was crushed, whoever was inside might have suffocated without it. How clever! The shelter was in surprisingly good condition and it seemed like a shame to let such ingenuity go to waste.
There were a few goodies left behind, too. Jon found several cans of emergency drinking water that were still full. By now, the water was unfit to consume, but it was a clear sign the person who originally built this thought they’d be spending a significant amount time inside.
Jon also found four large drums of wafers. Just like the water, the wafers were in no way edible, but they too proved someone was prepared to hide out for quite some time. Jon decided it was time to start tidying up the place.
It took quite the effort to clean up all the debris. Jon and his friends brought down large plastic bins to fill with the dirt and pieces of broken cement, and they carried them up the stairs one by one. It was grueling work, but they knew it’d be worth it.
Finally, after several hours of hard labor, the shelter was taking on a completely different look. The space was much bigger than Jon initially thought now that he could see the floor and the walls clearly!
The next order of business was removing the rusty stairs and replacing them with something much more stable. The stairs posed a real hazard if anyone tripped on them; nails and jagged edges of metal were exposed everywhere.
The rusted stairs were pried off the center support beam and Jon and his friends replaced the center beam and started installing sturdy, freshly painted stairs in a spiral fashion. This made entering and exiting the shelter much safer.
Once the stairs were complete, it was time to revamp the entrance. As of now, it was just a massive dirt pit that lead into a cement tube. The group was going to construct a much more appealing doorway!
The men constructed a circular cement lid to place over the opening. They braced the lid with planks of wood so their measurements would be exact, and they filled in any extra space with wet concrete.
Just look at the end product! Jon and his friends all did a stellar job cleaning everything out and making the shelter look like new. It was a hard day’s work, but it was well worth the group’s time.
The cleaned-up space looked amazing on the inside, too! Now, it was time for Jon to decide what exactly to do with it. Maybe he could turn it into a sweet man-cave for him and his hard-working buddies to enjoy? Only time would tell!
What a discovery! Can you imagine finding this in your back yard?
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