Texas couple turn abandoned house into Airbnb and find collectibles

When Maggie, 27, and Matt McGaugh, 31, bought a house in Caddo Lake, Texas, they had no idea they would end up with two houses and around $25,000 in “precious collectibles and superb furnishings” that the former owners of one of the properties had left behind.

The McGaughs first bought a three-bedroom, two-bathroom home for $350,000 in April, with plans to convert it into an Airbnb. They then learned that the neighboring property was on the market.

“The front door of the house faces our Airbnb, and we didn’t want strangers moving in, so we decided to take a look,” Maggie says. CNBC Do it.

The two-bed, two-bath house, which comes with a shed, had been abandoned for more than 20 years, she heard from a neighbor. And it was being sold fully furnished, which Maggie, a do-it-yourself influencerfelt was a sign.

The couple bought the property for just under $200,000 from the non-profit organization the previous owner donated it to.

“I couldn’t believe the house was still in such good shape. The original owner left the electrics running. Everything was in perfect shape,” Maggie said. “I felt like I was stepping back in time and walking through a museum.”

As they renovate and decorate, Maggie shares details on TikTok and giving its followers a look at some of the random finds in the house.

In July, she shared a clip which went viral in which she and Matt found a boat and a lawnmower inside the shed.

Some of the valuables the couple found in the house include a $1,600 painting and a dining table that sells for at least $10,000.

There were two sofas they planned to keep and a full-size bed set made from solid Tiger oak wood, which Maggie says is valued at over $15,000.

“We try to keep as much as possible, so that the house is always welcoming and beautiful for our guests,” she said. “I’m very happy to keep these pieces because what makes the house so cool is the story behind it.”

The couple have had the house thoroughly cleaned and plan to complete the renovation by this fall.

Future guests will have the option of staying in the main house next door or booking both. The previously abandoned house will be rented at a reduced price.

The couple said they plan to keep much of the furniture from the abandoned house.

Maggie McGaugh

Between the two houses, they will be able to accommodate around twenty people in total, she estimates.

“I think it will be a great combo for those who want both, especially because there is waterfront access,” she adds. “We will also use it as our vacation home.”

Buy the abandoned property made her want to buy more properties, although she and Matt couldn’t afford it right now. “It was an indescribable feeling not only to buy an abandoned house, but to see what it was and who lived there and what kind of history it has,” she says.

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