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This enormous hunk of partly built real estate outside of Houston, which is on the market for $3.6 million, has been called "haunted," a "disaster," and a "mystery." But here's what this unfinished, sprawling Texas property really is: a multimillion-dollar fixer-upper.
The massive home, abandoned and incomplete, has attracted media attention over the years. Located in the small town of Manvel, TX, the structure started in the early 2000s as a custom build for the original owners, a doctor and his wife, recounts Jim Youngblood, the current homeowner. "They got 70% done, and for some reason his wife thought the house was too big."
Her rationale isn't too hard to understand. According to Youngblood, the home was planned as a 63,890-square-foot facility on 10 acres and would include living quarters, the doctor's medical practice, and a setting for housing foster children.
With construction halted, the couple, who also owned the neighboring land, built an " almost identical" version of the place, this time keeping it to a more diminutive 48,000 square feet, Youngblood notes. A preacher then purchased the vacated structure from the doctor, planning some kind of housing project, but defaulted.
Youngblood, an investor, decided to go in on the place with family members in 2008. He now owns it through foreclosure. Jessica Castillo is the listing agent.
Since then, he has tried to sell it unsuccessfully.
"I've had it under contract dozens of times. For some reason, these people can't get financing." Youngblood says that if he can't sell the property in the next couple of months, he'll probably move his business there himself, envisioning the space as a rural office park with landscaped ponds, fountains, even longhorn cattle.
He's not the first person to have big dreams for the half-built home. Other potential buyers have appreciated the enormous 30,000-square-foot room in the back for an event center with a bed-and-breakfast. Or as an assisted-living facility with space for 70 rooms. Despite interest regularly rolling in, no one's closed on it yet.
"Everybody has these grand ideas, but they don't have any money," Youngblood laments.
The unfinished shell is being sold as is. Youngblood adds that the roof has been replaced and the foundation is solid.
"If you want to make it something, you wouldn't have to tear it all up. You're able to reuse the walls that are in the facility," he adds. There's also an indoor pool and spa, a layout for 30 bedrooms that could easily be more than doubled, and a large detached garage.
To make it yours, all you need is a dream and a Texas-sizes bank account.