Solar panels, a garage and a remnant of the cold war – an underground vault

House of the week

The Pepperell Cape, on the market for $850,000, has four bedrooms and three full bathrooms.

The property has a screened patio, a greenhouse and a chicken coop.

27 Maple Street, Pepperell


Style Cape

Year of construction 1993

Square feet 2,400

Bedrooms 4

thermal baths 3

Sewer/Water Public private

Taxes $9,583 (2022)

Every house has its secrets, and this Pepperell Cape is no exception.

The 50ft by 60ft fenced garden should allude to the priority given to security on this 1.88 acre lot. Dear deer, you never had a chance.

The stunning find, however, is a Cold War facility: a 7,200 square foot underground concrete vault once used to store essential bank papers. The contractor? The US Army Corps of Engineers. When? Circa 1960. The entrance is a bank vault door.

The safe used to house bank records. Luxury Life Productions
The safe door is bank grade. Luxury Life Productions

The current owners have maintained the vault – with its reinforced concrete walls and separate septic, electrical and ventilation systems – in part by installing two heat pumps and a dehumidifier.

The underground vault has had multiple uses, but the current owners have sent their children there to burn energy in the winter. The largest room is 6,000 square feet, a prime arena for biking. There is a bathroom and an office, but the bunker is not considered a living space because it has no windows.

The vault measures 7,200 square feet. Luxury Life Productions

The main house, an extended Cape topped with solar panels, is more than qualified. A walkway winds from the driveway to its porch. The front door opens into a long hallway with stairs to the right and a distinct floor that runs through much of the house: wide-plank knotty pine with cloves.

The home, which dates to 1993, sits on 1.88 acres. Luxury Life Productions

The corridor ends with a T, a lowercase letter. At the top is a full bath with a shower, felt, floral wallpaper, white ceramic tile flooring, and a single vanity with white cabinetry and a composite top and sink. A door connects to a changing room with a soapstone sink and a door to the deck. The laundry/pantry is next to this space and features open cabinets and shelving.

The main bathroom on the first floor features a wooden plank, shower, floral wallpaper and white ceramic tile floor. Luxury Life Productions

Back in the hallway and along the right arm of the T is the basement door, a carpeted bedroom currently used as an office and the owner’s suite. The carpeted suite features a plum colored accent wall, three windows, two single door closets and a ceiling fan. The ensuite bathroom offers sand-colored tile flooring, a single vanity with dark wood cabinetry, and a shower/tub combination with a curtain.

The owner’s suite is on the first floor. Luxury Life Productions
The owner’s suite bathroom offers a single vanity, tiled flooring and a tub/shower combination. Luxury Life Productions

The left arm of the T leads to an open layout shared by the kitchen, dining room and living room. The living room and dining room share a large room with seven windows, vaulted ceiling, track lighting, ceiling fan and a fireplace with a wood burning stove, hearth and brick surround and wood mantle.

The kitchen (and mudroom and laundry/pantry) flooring is an interlocking vinyl that looks like marble. The glass and marble tile backsplash reflects its color, while the Shaker-style natural wood cabinetry and dark black soapstone countertops provide a nice contrast. The kitchen also offers a peninsula with seating for two, recessed lighting and stainless steel appliances. The stove is electric.

The dining room and living room share an open layout. Luxury Life Productions
The kitchen counters are dark black soapstone. Luxury Life Productions

The home’s two remaining bedrooms and third full bathroom are upstairs. Both bedrooms are carpeted. The bedroom on the left offers one window but three closets, while the other has three windows, a single closet and storage under the eaves. They share a bathroom that has a single white vanity topped with soapstone, the same vinyl flooring as the kitchen, beadboard wainscoting, and a tub/shower combination with a curtain.

This upstairs bedroom has a window, carpeting and three closets. Luxury Life Productions
The two upstairs bedrooms share this full bathroom. Luxury Life Productions
This bedroom is also upstairs. It has carpeting, closet, three windows and storage under the eaves. Luxury Life Productions

The attached two car garage connects to an unfinished basement with full size windows.

The owners told the Globe that they hadn’t paid an electricity bill in years because of the rented solar panels.

The terrace offers a wooded view. Luxury Life Productions
Exploded marquetry punctuates the patio. Luxury Life Productions

Greg and Chris Maiser with Team sold to RE/Max Professional Associates in Holden are the listing agents.

Follow John R. Ellement on Twitter @JREbosglobe. Send announcements to [email protected]. Please Note: We do not offer unfurnished homes and will not respond to submissions that we do not pursue. Subscribe to our newsletter at Follow us on Twitter @globehomes.