Jawdropper of the Week: East Meets West in Northern Liberties for $1.35M

930-32 N. 4th St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19123 | TREND images via Coldwell Banker Preferred

Passers-by have no idea what’s behind that large garage door at 930-32 N. 4th St. in Northern Liberties. They probably think it’s some sort of industrial space. Shoot, we thought it was some sort of industrial space when we walked past it. After all, Northern Liberties was dotted with factories, breweries and workshops once upon a time.

Boy, were we ever wrong.

That garage door and wall hide one of the most stunning contemporary residences we’ve run across in quite a while. Read more »

First-Time Find: Refreshed in Phoenixville for $235K

159 1st Ave., Phoenixville, Pa. 19460 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

Want to walk to Blobfest next year?

Want urban vitality with a small-town feel?

You can get both by living in the middle of Phoenixville. There are plenty of new apartments with great amenities available.

What’s that? You want to build equity for your future too?

Then you want this lovely house on First Avenue in the middle of town instead. Read more »

Hello, Amazon HQ2; Goodbye, Affordability (Assuming That Happens)

Expect house prices to take off like a rocket if Amazon should come to town, says Drexel’s Kevin Gillen. But don’t expect Amazon to come to town, he adds. | iStock graphic

What would happen to house prices in Philadelphia if Amazon chooses it for its second headquarters?

Watch Philly become New York in short order, says Kevin Gillen of Drexel University’s Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation. But, he says, it’s not likely to happen.

“I consider the probability of [Amazon putting its headquarters in Philadelphia] as between zero and minus one,” Gillen said in an interview.

He sees the mad scramble touched off by Amazon’s request for proposals from large cities across the country as a ploy meant to extract better incentives from the city where it already intends to set up shop. Read more »

Big Plans Announced to Jumpstart Wayne Junction

The buildings being renovated by Philly Office Retail via the Wayne Junction Revitalization Project, plus other privately owned buildings in the vicinity Philly Office Retail President Ken Weinstein is trying to prod their owners into rehabilitating. | Photos: Sandy Smith

At least this diner won’t be called the Trolley Car.

But the Trolley Car’s owner plans to open another one as one of the first pieces of a multi-part jigsaw puzzle which, when completed, aims to turn the derelict industrial properties around Wayne Junction station into a mixed-use activity hub at the hinge where Germantown and Nicetown meet.

In a press conference this morning (Tuesday, Sept. 19th), Philly Office Retail President Ken Weinstein outlined his $12 million-plus strategy to get Wayne Junction moving forward with a $7.4 million assist from Mosaic Development Partners. The project aims to rehabilitate and reuse seven buildings and lots on the blocks surrounding Wayne Junction station, with Mosaic converting an eighth into a mixed-use residential/office/retail complex. Read more »

Trinity Tuesday: Little Big Home in Queen Village for $285K

745 S. 5th St., Apt. 2, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors

We’re sure you’ve heard the old cliché “Good things come in small packages.”

This very small trinity on a private courtyard in Queen Village is vivid proof of the truth of that statement.

In its 486 square feet of interior space you will find the latest and best of everything, and outside, you will find plenty of room for relaxing and entertaining. Read more »

On the Auction Block: A Gilded Age Manse in Queen Village

The Steen family home at 113-21 Bainbridge St. will be sold at auction on Oct. 10th at 6 p.m. | Photo: Max Spann Real Estate and Auction Company

Billboard magnate Terry Steen built the huge Colonial home you see above in the late 1990s.

Inside, he fitted it out in the manner of the 1890s.

This home at 113-21 Bainbridge Street is a fish out of water in many respects. It’s a sprawling Main Line mansion with nearly 7,000 square feet of interior space shoehorned into a compact Queen Village lot. It’s a celebration of Gilded Age excess plunked down among homes that are more modestly decorated. It’s a single home with a later addition on a lot that could hold five.

And it should have a new owner by 7 p.m. on Oct. 10th. Read more »

Main Line Monday: A Nostalgia Trip in Wynnewood for $570K

1371 Indian Creek Dr., Wynnewood, Pa. 19096 | TREND images via RE/MAX Executive Realty

Are you old enough to remember knotty pine-paneled rec rooms?

If you are, you’ll love this splendid little Colonial on a quiet lane in Wynnewood’s Penn Wynne section.

Built by its first owner in 1935, it’s full of spaces that should bring back memories of those halcyon years of the Fifties and early Sixties.

Take the basement, for instance, a large, accommodating space for relaxation and play, paneled in knotty pine with oak flooring, built-in toy storage and a family room with full bar (its sink is currently disconnected from the water lines but can be reconnected). Read more »

Behind the Boom: The Next Wave of Philly Developers

From left: Rahil Raza, 33, founder and CEO, Raza Properties; Mo Rushdy, 37, and Lawrence McKnight, 40, co-owners, RiverWards Group; Vince Viney, 46, president and founder, V2 Properties; Jared Pontz, 37, managing partner, Elfant Pontz Properties and Direct Mortgage Loan Company; Lindsey Scannapieco, 31, managing director, Scout; Anthony Fullard, 54, Rodney Ross, 27, and James Robertson, 32, principals, AJR Endeavors. Photograph by Colin Lenton

Rahil Raza, founder and CEO, Raza Properties
Backstory: Despite graduating from Temple with a pharmacy degree, Raza, 33, decided to start a development firm in 2009. His focus is well-appointed (but affordable) single-family units in North Philly. He’s done 48 projects to date.
What’s next: Completing 55 units in Sharswood and North Francisville that will hit the market under $400,000. Read more »

What $500K Will Buy You in Overbrook


6320 Overbrook Ave., Philadelphia, Pa. 19151 | TREND images via Keller Williams Realty

There are only a relative handful of Philadelphia neighborhoods where one can find houses selling for $500,000 or more. Most of them are in “Greater Center City,” the upper reaches of Northwest Philadelphia, or parts of the Far Northeast.

One of them, however, lies in West Philadelphia: Overbrook Farms. This National Register historic district is famous for its huge, substantial homes dating to the dawn of the 20th century.

These homes showcase classic Colonial, Dutch Colonial and traditional American style and design. This one does too — on the outside.

On the inside, it’s a whole ‘nother story. Walk through the front door of 6320 Overbrook Ave. and prepare to have your mind blown by a striking contemporary home in turn-of-the-century drag. Read more »

These Are The 10 Most Affordable Homes in Point Breeze

2322 Greenwich St., the priciest of the ten most affordable Point Breeze homes, is a totally rebuilt three-bedroom, two-bath home that lists for $196,900 — well within the “workforce housing” range. | TREND image via Keller Williams Realty

“Great investment opportunity.”

These three words or similar begin about half of the descriptions of the ten least expensive homes currently on the market in Point Breeze, based on an analysis of current listings by NeighborhoodX.

And what would these investors get? Homes that have lots of potential but need lots of work — or homes whose tenants might help them afford a more expensive home of their own in the neighborhood after they’ve deducted the maintenance and carrying costs.

But if you’re looking for a place to live, don’t despair: You can find homes in great shape here for reasonable cost, such as the newly rehabbed home pictured above. It’s the priciest of our ten most affordable homes.

Read more »

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