Thos. Moser Sets the Stage for Modern Living in a Model Home

This living room, currently installed at OCF Realty’s Brown Street Court model home, features items from Thos. Moser’s Hartford Collection along with a New Gloucester Rocker, partially visible at left. | Photos: OCF Realty

Design professionals universally recommend that sellers do some staging when they put their homes on the market. Wise developers do the same when they equip a model home for touring.

Realtor-developer Ori Feibush currently has a model home open at his Brown Street Court development, a new seven-unit luxury townhouse project in Fairmount. House-hunters who tour it are in for a bit of a surprise: the staging comes courtesy of Thos. Moser, Handmade American Furniture.

Moser’s partnership with OCF Realty is a new departure locally for the Maine furniture maker, whose ties to Philadelphia stretch back 33 years. It’s an effort to showcase the contemporary side of the Moser furniture line and reach out to a new generation of potential buyers. Read more »

Meet the McMansion for Millennials

A kitchen in a model T-Select home. Photo courtesy of Toll Brothers

There’s been much wailing and gnashing of teeth in the real estate industry over what insiders see as a distressing trend among millennials: They aren’t buying houses at nearly the same rate as generations before them. Read more »

Luxury for Less in East Kensington for $499K

2107 E. Dauphin St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19125 | Photos via Todd Hovanec, Luminous Realty

Do you love Fido as much as you love your spouse? (Or maybe even more?)

Both of them will be thrilled to live in this rebuilt contemporary East Kensington rowhome. (The listing puts this home in Fishtown, but although it’s in Fishtown’s zip code, it’s actually on the Kensington side of Trenton Avenue.)

It’s loaded with spaces and amenities you usually have to spend a good bit more than this to find, and one of those amenities you probably won’t find anywhere else you look, no matter how much you spend. Read more »

Rents Rise Modestly Again in July; Renters Give Area Good Marks

Rents for apartments in Philadelphia rose slightly for the sixth straight month in July, climbing 0.3 percent from June levels, according to the latest monthly rent report from

According to Apartment List, the median rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Philadelphia stood at $960 in July, and the median two-bedroom apartment rented for $1160. These figures are 2.1 percent above year-ago levels.

The annual growth rate for rents in Philadelphia lags both the statewide average of 2.2 percent and the national average of 2.9 percent. Read more »

2 Philly Architectural Firms Make Ranks of Top 100

Biovid headquarters in Bristol, one of the projects of Princeton-based KSS Architects, No. 188 on this year’s Architectural Record Top 300. | Photo: Halkin Mason Photography for KSS Architects

Philadelphia is home to scores of outstanding architects. A few, like VSBA, enjoy national and international reputations for their work.

But when it comes to the amount of work they do, only six firms in this region make the ranks of the architectural heavy hitters, and only two of those six are among the 100 largest architectural firms in the country.

Each year, Architectural Record releases a list of the 300 largest architectural firms in the country, ranked by total annual revenue from architectural services. No firm headquartered in this region made it into the top 50, but two — Ballinger and EwingCole — made it into the second group of 50. Read more »

Thinking of Flipping Houses Here? You’ll Clean Up, But It’ll Cost You

You too could make a living flipping houses in Philly, like Rachel Street of “Philly Street Flippin'” does. Be prepared to pay a good chunk of change up front, though, before reaping those huge profits — or learn to do some work yourself, as Street does here. | Photo: The Michael Group

Philadelphia’s affordable (by big-city standards) housing stock turns out to be an ace in the hole not only for would-be home buyers but for would-be house flippers as well. But according to a study recently released by the financial-advice site WalletHub, that huge advantage comes with an equally large downside: high renovation costs.

The two factors together landed Philadelphia near the bottom of the middle of the pack when WalletHub ranked the 150 largest cities in the US for their potential for happy house-flipping. While the city placed third for market potential, based largely on its whopping 107.3 percent gross return on investment, a first-place figure shared by four other cities at least — its remodeling-cost and quality-of-life rankings were near the bottom: 111th and 126th out of 150, respectively. Thus the city ranked 87th overall as a place where house-flippers can realize their goals. Read more »

Hard Hat Tour: The Pointe

The first four homes being built as part of the Pointe development will be sold to working families for $238,000. The two end units have already been spoken for. | Photos: Sandy Smith

Maybe other developers would prefer to work with one single parcel of land and build a passel of houses on it, but Delta Alliance CEO Walter Logan is perfectly happy to take several scattered lots around the intersection of 19th Street and Ridge Avenue in order to build 67 new housing units. The new homes — 14 market-rate townhouses, another 14 townhouses built in connection with the city’s workforce housing initiative, and a 39-unit condominium building — will be completed over the course of the next year.

The first four units, all of them workforce housing, are complete or nearly so now. They occupy the last four lots on the north side of the 1800 block of Thompson Street, just east of Sharswood and north of Francisville.
Read more »

Gracious Living (Updated) in Penn Valley for $2.695M

50 Righters Mill Rd., Penn Valley, Pa. 19072 | Photos: Herb Engelsberg and Michael Brock via The Sivel Group

Main Line elegance has historically come in two principal flavors: opulent and understated.

This handsome home in Penn Valley falls into the latter category.

Designed in the early 1930s by noted local architect Erling H. Pedersen, this English country-style manor makes the most of its hillside location along the Mill Creek valley. Inside, it’s been beautifully updated to incorporate the best elements of 21st-century design; outside, it retains every bit of its original casual, informal beauty. Read more »

Philly Area Among Top 3 Job-Seeker Destinations in the Nation

Philadelphia’s location between New York and Washington may finally be working to its advantage. But can the housing market keep up with rising demand driven by outsiders in search of value? | Photo: bookwyrmm/

One of the things that has weighed heavily on the minds of Greater Philly’s boosters is the region’s modest employment growth, which has up until very recently been downright anemic in the city itself. This disconnect between job growth and housing demand has fueled some anxiety that a housing bubble may be forming in the region — even if the current seller’s market is driven by booming demand and a shortage of inventory.

A new study of where Americans are moving to find work should ease those fears a bit. Conducted by the online recruitment site ZipRecruiter, the study identified the top 20 destinations in the country for job-seekers who intended to relocate. Philadelphia came in third, behind only New York and Los Angeles, based on an analysis of job-seeker and job-opening data in ZipRecruiter’s database combined with median house sale price data from and median salary information from PayScale. Read more »

Homes Being Planted at Julius Farm

(Left to right) PRDC Properties COO Brandon Morrison, Julius Farm homeowner-to-be Steve Cocca, PRDC CEO David Perlman and PRDC President Jon Thomas dig into the ceremonial soil next to a rendering of a Lookout model home at the Julius Farm groundbreaking. | Photos: PRDC Properties

With their nearly completed model home as a backdrop, executives of PRDC Properties formally broke ground July 24 on their latest residential project, this one in the Bucks County suburbs.

This project, Julius Farm, will consist of 11 custom farmhouses in the craftsman style. Each home will sit on at least two acres of land along a curving cul-de-sac in Chalfont. While the homes won’t have farmland attached to them, they will be surrounded by protected farmland, county parkland and forests, all of which will preserve their country character. Read more »

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