Rent Reports: Garbage In, Garbage Out

iStock photo

iStock photo

According to one of the three monthly rent reports produced by the major apartment-search sites, rents for one-bedroom apartments continued their steady upward climb in March, rising 2.2 percent from February’s level, part of a trend that has rents 3.8 percent above year-ago levels.

According to another one, rents also rose hereabouts last month, but by rates that shouldn’t get anyone too anxious yet: they’re only one percent higher than they were both last month and last year at this time.

No, they’re not, says the third. In fact, they’re down, and down by a lot: 8 percent, the third straight month in which local one-bedroom rents have fallen. And this decline was the second-steepest of any city this site tracks in the United States.

Millions of apartment-hunters use these three sites each month to find suitable digs for rent, and local real estate media, including this site, have reported on these figures reliably when they come out.

But can we really rely on the figures produced by these sites — in order: Zumper, Apartment List and Abodo — when they vary so widely in mapping trends in the same city? Read more »

Trinity Tuesday: A Paradox in Germantown for $196.5K

444 W. Woodlawn St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19144 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

444 W. Woodlawn St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19144 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

It’s no secret that a trinity house is a special commodity in Philadelphia. So, we’d be lying if we told you we didn’t geek out every time a new listing came across our computer screen. But this week, our Trinity Tuesday listing has us scratching our heads – quite frankly because we aren’t even sure that it is one.

Is what we have here a trinity house with a major facelift? Or is this residence claiming to be something it’s not?

In several ways, this home looks like a trinity. Its curb appeal is very trinity-esque. It does have three floors. Heck, it was even built in 1880. However, it’s the interior of this self-proclaimed “double trinity” that really trips us up. Read more »

Main Line Monday: A Carriage Manse in Bryn Mawr for $1.099M

735 Conestoga Rd., Bryn Mawr, Pa. 19090 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

735 Conestoga Rd., Bryn Mawr, Pa. 19010 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

It’s no difficult task to imagine that a house with a full-width, five-columned, two-story front porch is going to be pretty impressive. But what makes this Bryn Mawr home a surprise is that this was the carriage house for a much larger estate. Built in 1915, this home is situated on 1.25 acres of land and boasts 5,000 square feet of interior space. And that’s just the start of its awesomeness.

Let’s begin with the main level. The open floor plan layout features all the rooms you would typically find in a house – a living room, family room, dining room, and kitchen. And then, there are some extras – a breakfast room, sunroom, playroom, guest bedroom, and laundry room. Read more »

A Farmhouse in Fishtown for $425K

241-43 E. Wildey St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19125 | TREND images via Keller Williams Realty

241-43 E. Wildey St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19125 | TREND images via Keller Williams Realty

Every so often, a listing comes along that truly merits the word “unique.” This is one of them, for we’re certain you’re not going to find a home like this one anywhere else within the Philadelphia city limits.

One look tells you that this home on the riverward side of Girard Avenue in Fishtown goes back a while – back to the early decades of the 19th century, most likely, when most of the homes that lined the streets near the Delaware looked like this.

What it doesn’t tell you is that this home is the singular creation of Mary Seton Corboy, the founder of East Kensington’s Greensgrow Farm. Over the 15 years she lived here prior to her passing last year, she transformed what were originally two separate residences into one stylish, comfortable home with loads of personality. Read more »

What $500K Will Buy You in Passyunk Square

1224 S. 11th St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND image via BHHS Fox & Roach

1224 S. 11th St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND image via BHHS Fox & Roach

A few years ago, we described Passyunk Square as Philadelphia’s “up-and-coming neighborhood.” Why? Well, because the South Philly neighborhood was experiencing an influx of new residents, restaurants, shops, and more – not to mention it’s home to the biggest cheesesteak rivals ever, Pat’s and Geno’s.

A few years later, in 2017, Passyunk Square continues to blossom. The neighborhood has seen a 9 percent rise in home values over the past year alone, and is expected to grow another 3.5 percent in 2017. If you have dreams of moving here yourself and have a budget of around $500,000, you’re in luck. The median price of homes in the area currently sits at $354,500. But what exactly can your above-average budget get you? Continue on to find out. Read more »

Jawdropper of the Week: A Lot to Love in Newtown Square for $5.95M

40 Harrison Dr., Newtown Square, Pa. 19073 | Images via Kurfiss Sotheby's International Realty

40 Harrison Dr., Newtown Square, Pa. 19073 | Images via Kurfiss Sotheby’s International Realty

We don’t normally use listings from the same town for consecutive weeks’ jawdroppers, but when it’s deserved, we are more than willing to make an exception – and this time around, Newtown Square deserves that exception.

This Delaware County manor home sits on a whopping 12.7 acres of land, which is simply incredible. Besides the six-car garage, the in-ground pool and hot tub combo, the spacious back patio, and multiple gardens, the lot is pretty much empty. We aren’t exactly sure what to make of all that extra space, but the options are clearly limitless for any ambitious homeowner. Read more »

Westside Story: New Apartments on the (Cutting) Edge of Phoenixville

The retail portion of the Westside development, under construction on Phoenixville's west edge. | Photos and renderings courtesy Scully Company

The retail portion of the Westside development, under construction on Phoenixville’s west edge. | Photos and renderings courtesy Scully Company

Another old industrial community with strong bones hereabouts is Phoenixville. This former steel mill town has lately seen a surge of interest in its charming, walkable downtown, anchored by the Colonial Theater, the movie house featured in the cult-fave horror B-movie “The Blob.” New apartment buildings offer residents young and old alike the chance to live in the heart of it all.

But maybe you want to have convenient access to the heart of it all yet get away from it when you want. Berwyn-based Longview Property Group is working on your answer right now. Read more »

First-Time Find: Polished History in Morrisville for $290K

441 Jefferson Ave., Morrisville, Pa. 19067 | TREND images via Zillow

441 Jefferson Ave., Morrisville, Pa. 19067 | TREND images via Zillow

When it comes to your home, it’s less about the amount of space you have and more about what you do with that space. Take this 117-year-old residence in Bucks County, for example, which proves that good maintenance and a stylish eye are all you need to take an affordable home to the next level.

If you’re a first-time homebuyer with even the slightest desire to settle down in the suburbs, this property is a great choice. Located in Morrisville Borough, it has three bedrooms and a fenced-in backyard – and right off the bat, those are two features very appropriate for a growing family. Read more »

Faded Glory in Mt. Airy for $700K

30 Pelham Rd., Philadelphia, Pa. 19119 | TREND images via Elfant Wissahickon Realtors

30 Pelham Rd., Philadelphia, Pa. 19119 | TREND images via Elfant Wissahickon Realtors

Perhaps one reason those who compare Philadelphia to Detroit miss the mark is because this city has many neighborhoods that, while they have seen better days, still have strong bones and buried opportunity.

It also has many homes with those same qualities. In this case, however, the opportunity’s not buried — it’s in plain sight.

Ordinarily, we do not feature short sales or foreclosures in our house posts because we don’t want to promote profiting off the misfortune of others. But this particular short sale is simply too unusual to ignore. Read more »

Trinity Tuesday: A Regal Retreat in Queen Village for $229.9K

228 Catharine St. #3, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via Zillow

228 Catharine St. #3, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via Zillow

This week’s featured trinity is one of those rarities: An affordable home in a gated community.

Now, don’t get ahead of yourself: your friends who come to visit you in this Queen Village charmer won’t be given the eagle eye and asked to present ID by a guy sitting in a guard house. But this home does sit on a private courtyard tucked behind two rowhomes on Catharine Street, sealed off by a gate from the outside world.

Which makes it a perfect choice for an individual or couple who want to have their urban vitality and eat their suburban tranquility too. Read more »

« Older Posts  |  Newer Posts »