What $500K Will Buy You in Rittenhouse-Fitler

Yes, it's possible to rise above it all here without being a millionaire.

Bright MLS image via Weichert Realtors

After looking at the eye-popping condominiums on the market in Rittenhouse-Fitler, then fainting at the equally eye-popping prices, we decided to see whether the high life was attainable at a lower price point.

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The good news is, it is. You just won’t live on the square itself or by the river like the swells do.

But you will live in an attractive condo, most likely but not necessarily in a building that had once housed offices, on the neighborhood’s edges, closer to Chestnut or 15th streets. Here are three examples of what we’re talking about:

2049 Walnut St., Unit 2R (above) | 1 bed, 1.5 baths, 1,053 square feet, $479,000

The agents featured the deck in their photo gallery, and who are we to quibble with them? The swells get them with their condos, but they’re much rarer downmarket.  The bi-level deck that comes with this bi-level condo has a fantastic view of the Center City skyline. The unit’s nice on the inside too: beautifully maintained, top-of-the-line appliances in the kitchen, spacious master suite upstairs with marble tile shower stall and office space outside the bedroom, soaring ceilings and tall windows in the living room, and even a powder room for your guests.

This home has had two price reductions, the most recent for $10,999 on Jan. 19.

2049 Walnut St., Unit 2R, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 [The McDonald Group | Weichert Realtors]

Image via Kurfiss Sotheby’s International Realty

1500 Chestnut St. #20G | 2 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths, 1,529 square feet, $490,000

This bi-level penthouse at the Ellington may not have a deck, but it has just about everything else you might want in a city condo. Its open-plan main floor can be configured for any use and includes a kitchen with cherry cabinets, top-drawer appliances and wine storage. (Speaking of cherry, aren’t those Brazilian cherry floors nice?) One of the two bedrooms has a skylight, and you’ll find marble tile in both bathrooms — one equipped with a tub, the other with a huge glass-enclosed shower.

1500 Chestnut St. #20G, Philadelphia, Pa. 19102 [Karen Barone | Kurfiss Sotheby’s International Realty]

TREND image via RE/MAX Preferred Realtors

1737-39 Chestnut St. #801 | 1 bed, 1 bath, 1,058 square feet, $500,000

Here’s a handsome, contemporary one-bedroom convertible condo. Why “convertible”? It has a pocket door separating the living and dining rooms, allowing you to close off the living room and use it as a guest bedroom when you have visitors you’d like to host. Book lovers and object collectors will also appreciate its many built-in bookcases. Its kitchen features light maple cabinets, and the bathroom has both a shower and a Jacuzzi tub. Across the hall is a laundry and utility room for your exclusive use.

1737-39 Chestnut St. #801, Philadelphia, Pa. 19103 [Heather Griesser Lapierre | RE/MAX Preferred Realtors]