Just Listed: Moderne Colonial in Germantown

This one-of-a-kind classic offers traditional style with an Art Deco touch in a lush sylvan setting.

house for sale germantown moderne colonial front elevation

500 E. Church Lane, Philadelphia, Pa. 19144 | Photos: Courtesy The Adams Group, Compass

Take a classic house style and add a soupçon of Art Deco to it. Then set it in the middle of a one-acre lot. Let it sit for some 70 or so years, updating it as needed and letting the plantings mature to a lush, rich green.

The result is this magical yet modest-looking house that’s bigger than it appears to be in a bosky corner of East Germantown.

In form, this house for sale is a classic center-hall Colonial. But its shape and decoration tells you it’s been remixed. In this case, its builder made judicious use of the Moderne style, a stripped-down variant on Art Deco that became popular in the late 1930s and early 1940s.

(The year-built data on the Bright MLS database says this house dates to 1925. But that year is often a placeholder for early 20th-century houses whose exact date of construction is unknown. Everything about this house’s style says “1940” to me.)

house for sale germantown moderne colonial living room

Living room

Its owner has kept this house true to its roots while refreshing and updating it where needed. All of its rooms display an elegant simplicity, augmented by features like abundant fireplaces, random-width oak floors and traditional trim.

house for sale germantown moderne colonial dining room

Dining room

You’ll find fireplaces in the living room (wood-burning), dining room (gas) and two of the upstairs bedrooms. All are in working order.

house for sale germantown moderne colonial kitchen


The kitchen got an update that gave it traditional Colonial farmhouse-style cabinetry and up-to-date appliances.

house for sale germantown moderne colonial master bedroom

Master bedroom

Bright pastels and lighter earth tones give every room in this house a sunny disposition, aided by plenty of light streaming through its large windows. Style-appropriate lighting brings out its Deco side.

house for sale germantown moderne colonial study

Study (bedroom)

In addition to the main house, a carriage house has garage parking for two cars and an accessory apartment upstairs. It too is in great shape, with leaded-glass French doors in the living room, sparkling pine floors and a full bath.

house for sale germantown moderne colonial backyard


Rear porch

Surrounding this ensemble are mature trees, verdant lawns, grass-covered stone walls and a garden plot. A handsome porch lets you survey all this.

This gem sits in a relatively affluent, mostly African-American pocket of East Germantown that’s also home to noted scholar-activist Marc Lamont Hill. La Salle University is a short walk away, and the neighborhood shopping center La Salle built is even closer. Buy this house for sale and you might run into me at the Fresh Grocer when you go grocery shopping.



BATHS: 3 full, 1 half


SALE PRICE: $519,000

500 E. Church Lane, Philadelphia, Pa. 19144 [Keith Adams | The Adams Group | Compass]