Property’s Favorite Trinities of 2014

Because everyone should consider living in a home that's unique to Philadelphia.

TREND photo via Fox & Roach Realtors.

TREND photo via Fox & Roach Realtors.

We recently did a roundup of the best houses we’ve featured this year, but a keen eye might have noticed one type of home missing: the trinity house.

For those of you scratching your heads, a trinity is a three-level home with one room per floor. Obscure little blogs that haven’t been updated since the late aughts will tell you the trinity style got its start in Philadelphia in the late 18th / early 19th centuries. As such, they tend to be considered “unique to Philadelphia.”

Given the compactness of these homes, bedrooms are usually restricted to no more than two, meaning they might favor a certain kind of demographic, as Liz Spikol once noted when writing about an adorable trinity for rent in Old City:

Many Philadelphians are intrigued by the trinity, but buying one is such a commitment: It means, basically, that you’ll never have children. I’ve known more than one person who’s purchased a trinity while single and then had to sell once they met someone with whom they might procreate.

For some of us, that’s no problem. (I recently confessed to anyone that would listen that my life’s goal is to live in a trinity house with five puppies.) But even if living out your days in a distinctive home that was around before the Civil War (as one on this roundup was) is not something you’d consider, it’s nice to be aware of the quirkier parts of historical Philadelphia.