Photo by Stefan Steinbauer on Unsplash

Hidden rooms aren’t just for castles and mystery novels — these days, lots of homeowners are putting secret rooms and hidden storage spaces in their own homes. There are lots of reasons why you might want a hidden room, from fulfilling a childhood fantasy to creating a safe room for you and your family to hide from an intruder. A secret room, or even just a hidden cupboard, can give you extra storage, a secure place to keep valuables, a safe place to hide or a whimsical space for work or hobbies. It might even boost your home’s value.

But how can you add a hidden room or secret cupboard to your home? First, you’ll need to find the space. Then, you’ll need to make decisions — how will you kit out your secret space? Will you need to hire contractors to help you with electric wiring, building a hidden door, removing walls or installing trap doors? You may be able to do much of the work yourself, but you should make sure that any work you do in your new secret room is up to code, so you can enjoy your hideaway safely.

Find the Space

Just about anyone can have a secret room or hidden cupboard, as long as you’re creative with using the space in your home. Many homeowners choose to convert a spare bedroom, office or into a secret room, while still others install a secret trap-door entrance that leads to a secret space in the attic or basement. Some may repurpose the space under the stairs or take steps to hide the entryway to an existing passage or room.

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Still others may go so far as to build an addition onto their home to add the space for a secret room. Want to keep your new hidden room on the down-low? Add a below-grade room onto your basement and hide it under a new deck or porch.

If you don’t have a walk-in closet, spare room, under-stair cupboard, attic or other space that you can convert into a full-on hidden room, you can still enjoy the benefits of a secret storage space. Replace pantry or closet doors with functional shelving units that open to give access to additional storage within. Install vertical cupboards in your kitchen or wardrobe. Hide a secret cupboard behind a full-length mirror or a large painting. Install a trap door that opens into a nook beneath the floorboards.

Contact the Right Professionals

If you’re converting a spare room into a secret room, you’ll need to both close off the original entryway to that space and install a new, hidden entryway. Contact a drywall repair professional in Tampa, or wherever you live, to replace the original entryway to your spare bedroom or office with a smooth wall.

You may also need to contact a mechanical engineer who can build a custom hidden entryway for your new secret room. Make sure the hidden entryway blends in to its surroundings. For example, if your entryway is in a bedroom, consider hiding it in the back of an armoire, so you can escape to your secret room Narnia-style.

Once you have your hidden entryway sorted out, you’ll want to renovate and design the new secret space. If you’re converting a closet, under-stair cupboard, attic or basement to a secret room, you may want to hire an electrician to install additional wiring and . You may choose to save money by installing flooring or paneling yourself, or hire contractors to finish an unfinished space.

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Don’t have space for a whole secret room? It’s not hard to create space for a hidden compartment in your drywall. Installing a hidden cupboard should be a simple enough DIY job — just cut a hole in your drywall, secure the shelving for your new cupboard to the studs and hide it behind a painting, mirror or wall hanging.

Secret rooms are the hot new home trend — and why shouldn’t they be? A secret space can give you a quiet place to relax or a convenient nook for storing valuable items. Hidden rooms and cupboards aren’t just practical; they’re cool and fun. Have you ever wondered what it’s like to have a secret lair of your very own? Now you can find out.