More homeowners installing secret doors and passageways

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Steve Humble of Creative Home Engineering shows Jason Barry one of many secret doors that look like anything but doors. (Source: 3TV/CSB 5) Steve Humble of Creative Home Engineering shows Jason Barry one of many secret doors that look like anything but doors. (Source: 3TV/CSB 5)
GILBERT, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

Secret doors and passageways are more popular than ever with homeowners looking for creative ways to protect their families and prized possessions.

Steve Humble is the founder of Creative Home Engineering in Gilbert. His company makes an assortment of secret doors that are used to hide secret rooms or closets in someone's house. His website's name -- HiddenPassageway.com -- basically says it all.

"We make doors that don't look like doors," said Humble. "It could look like a bookcase, or a dresser, or grandfather clock, or brick wall -- anything you can think of that isn't a door, we'll make a door that looks like that."

Humble said that some of his clients want a secret door to hide a kids' play area or movie room. Others want a place to hide a large safe or some guns.

But personal safety is the No. 1 reason people call him, Humble said.

High-end clients want custom-built panic or safe rooms where they can hide in case of a home invasion.

"It's amazing how many movies have a secret door in them, and so they'll see the movie and come to me and say, 'Hey, I want a secret door just like the one I saw in that movie. Can you make that for me?'"

All of the high-end secret doors open and close with a remote control that can be connected to anything around the house, which makes it kind of fun.

So fun, in fact, customers often have trouble keeping their secret rooms secret.

"The majority of clients come to us with the intention of telling no one, but it's not uncommon for them to be so proud and excited about it, they end up showing it off to the neighborhood," Humble said.

 A high-end vault-like secret door costs around $20,000, but there are less expensive options.

Creative Home Engineering has started making a secret door that looks like a full-length mirror for around $1,500.

Humble said his company is selling about 20 secret doors a month.

For more information on the more affordable secret doors available visit www.HiddenDoorStore.com.

If you are interested in a custom-made secret door or safe room, visit www.HiddenPassageway.com.


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Jason Barry
Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

Click to learn more about Jason.

Jason Barry

Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

He is a nine-time Rocky Mountain Emmy Award winner who is best known for his weekly Dirty Dining reports, which highlight local restaurants with major health code violations.

Jason was born in Los Angeles and graduated from the University of Miami.

An avid sports fan, Jason follows the Diamondbacks, Cardinals and Suns with his wife, Karen, and son, Joshua.

His favorite stories to cover are the station’s Pay it Forward segments, which reward members of the community with $500 for going ‘above and beyond’ the call of duty to help others.

Jason, started his career at WBTW-TV in Florence, SC before moving to WALA-TV in Mobile, AL, was named the Associated Press Reporter of the Year in 2002.

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