Just Listed: Rehabbed Rowhouse in Fishtown

Behind this classic Philly rowhouse facade lies an all-new modern house that reflects some of the latest design trends and boasts some nice little extras.

rehabbed fishtown rowhouse for sale exterior front

Everything old is new again — even the facade of this classic Philly rowhouse at 1651 E. Berks St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19125 | Photos: WeFilmPhilly via The Stawasz Group, Keller Williams Philly

The surge in construction activity in Philadelphia over the past 20 or so years has produced what one might call a “new Philadelphia School” of architecture and interior design. The surge has been paused momentarily by the COVID-19 outbreak and will likely taper off a bit in the coming years thanks to the reduced tax abatement, but there’s enough new product out there for future developers and builders to use what’s already here as templates.

Much of the new-from-the-ground-up construction suffers from a certain blandness, but when you consider what much of our existing stock of rowhouses looks like, maybe we shouldn’t rail against the blandness too much.

The real challenge comes when a developer gets their hands on an existing rowhouse. The goal here is threefold: Preserve the house’s character, at least on the outside. Provide a house that will appeal to modern lifestyles on the inside. And package all this at a reasonably affordable price.

That last objective may explain why so many of the interiors of these rehabbed houses look alike as well. How, then, do you take a pretty generic modern rebuild and make it something distinctive?

This rehabbed Fishtown rowhouse for sale is Tester Construction’s latest answer to that question. And as is often the case, the answer is, “It’s the little things that make the difference.”

Some of those little things you might not notice, like the front facade. It’s actually been rebuilt using concrete blocks and new bricks tied into the party walls.

rehabbed fishtown rowhouse for sale living room

Living room

You also might not notice that the floors are made of actual hardwood — red oak, to be specific, coated with a whitewash finish and a sealant. And you definitely won’t notice the dual-zone climate control system until you actually move in and use it.

However, you probably will notice the kitchen, in the back of the open main floor.

rehabbed fishtown rowhouse for sale dining room and kitchen

Dining room and kitchen

This kitchen reflects one of the latest kitchen design trends: using open shelves rather than closed cabinets for storage and display of certain items. Here, they float above the subway-tile backsplash surrounding the sink.

rehabbed fishtown rowhouse for sale kitchen


The kitchen also comes with a dry bar next to the dining area. It contains two little things that make a difference: a slim mini-wine fridge and a bar cart tucked into a storage cubbyhole.

second floor hall bath

Second-floor hall bathroom

Some other little things that make a difference include the built-in closet organizers in the second-floor bedroom closets and the decor in the second-floor hall bathroom, which includes exposed brick and a custom vanity made of wood reclaimed from this house’s original structure.

master bedroom

Master bedroom

The extras in the top-floor master suite include loft storage space over the master bedroom closet and a ladder to reach it. The closet itself also has a built-in organizer system.

master bathroom

Master bathroom

The master bathroom, while relatively compact, features a marble-topped double vanity and a skylit custom shower stall.

roof deck

Roof deck

There are also two outdoor spaces here. One is the roof deck off the master suite.

rear patio

Rear patio

The other is a paved patio accessed through the sliding doors at the back of the kitchen. Think of this as a blank canvas on which you can paint in shades of green thanks to a city program that reimburses you up to $2,500 for installing green stormwater management features in it.

This rehabbed Fishtown rowhouse for sale also has a finished basement that you could outfit as a rec room, a media room, a gym, or even a spare bedroom. It also contains a half bath.

If those little things don’t quite add up to you, maybe this bigger one will: This respectful yet modern rehabbed Fishtown rowhouse for sale is located just one block off Frankford Avenue. This means that once we’re all able to go out and about again, you will enjoy easy access to Fishtown’s lively row of fine restaurants and unique shops. Until then, you should be able to order takeout from Suraya, Kensington Quarters, Cheu Fishtown, Wm. Mulherin’s Sons, and more, and maybe even wash it down with some Evil Genius beer from the takeout shop in their tasting room.



BATHS: 2 full, 1 half


SALE PRICE: $510,000

OTHER STUFF: A buyer has made an offer for this house, but the offer is contingent, and the seller is accepting backup offers.

1651 E. Berks St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19125 [Ryan Stawasz | The Stawasz Group | Keller Williams Philly]