5 Must-See Open Houses This Weekend

This week: Five outstanding houses within reach of most buyers. All of them are classics, though one of them wears a disguise.

open houses bucks doylestown renovated bungalow

Bright MLS image via Keller Williams Realty

This week, we offer you one of our periodic reminders that you don’t have to spend a fortune to land a house that looks like a million bucks. All five of this week’s featured open houses are examples of popular and beloved house types frequently found in the middle of the market. (Okay, a couple of them are changelings, but they manage to pull off mixing two styles with aplomb.)

Most of these houses have just hit the market. You might want to make sure you’re pre-qualified before going to tour them, because they’re all great buys that are sure not to stay on the market for too long.

Bucks County: 126 Shewell Ave., Doylestown (above) | 3 beds, 2 baths, 1,452 square feet, $500,000

Open house: Sunday, July 14th, 1 to 3 p.m.

This handsome 1920s bungalow got a fabulous makeover a little while ago that refreshed its interiors and opened up its kitchen to the other main living spaces. Lots of windows make the living and dining rooms bright, and a vaulted ceiling and breakfast bar in its archway make the totally up-to-date kitchen feel extra spacious. Two of this house’s three bedrooms share the main floor with the living spaces, while the upper floor contains plenty of closets and a spacious master suite with its own renovated bathroom plus a bonus room that can serve as a sitting room or home office. A patio in back offers plenty of space to entertain outdoors, and your kids will enjoy the two-story tree fort nestled in your wooded backyard.

All this plus a location smack in the heart of Doylestown should make this classic a no-brainer.

126 Shewell Ave., Doylestown, Pa. 18901 [Melissa Healy | The Melissa Healy Group | Keller Williams Realty]

open houses chester coatesville contemporary split-level

Bright MLS image via Keller Williams Realty

Chester County: 109 Brandywine Dr., Coatesville | 3 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths, 2,056 square feet, $309,900

Open house: Sunday, July 14th, 1 to 3 p.m.

On the outside, it appears that whoever built this house in 1992 took a popular midcentury house type — the split-level — and ran the architectural drawings through the McMansionizer. On the inside, however, this house has a simple and striking contemporary aesthetic best exemplified by its main floor. You enter right into a soaring living room with a skylit vaulted ceiling that rises to the upper bedroom level and offers a balcony overlook. Behind this is a flowing open space that begins with a dining room, proceeds through a nicely outfitted kitchen whose breakfast nook sports an island, and ends in a comfortable family room.

This house sits on a 1.1-acre wooded lot that gives it a backyard equipped for anything you might want: it has a deck, a paved patio, a greenhouse and a play deck with swings, a climbing wall and a tree fort that both your children and your inner child will love. And if that’s not enough outdoors for you, the yard backs up onto a Chester County park trail, and both Hibernia Park and Birch Run Campground are close by.

109 Brandywine Dr., Coatesville, Pa. 19320  [Gary Mercer | The Gary Mercer Group | Keller Williams Realty]

open houses delaware havertown updated colonial

Bright MLS image via Keller Williams Realty

Delaware County: 9 Columbus Ave., Havertown | 5 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths, 2,289 square feet, $465,000

Open house:  Sunday, July 14th, 2 to 4 p.m.

Here’s another 1920s classic that has been renewed and refreshed for our time. It doesn’t have an open-plan main floor — it has a traditional center-hall Colonial layout — but the way the living spaces pinwheel around the center entrance hall and the combination of the dining room and kitchen give it the same open flow you’d get if the rooms weren’t at least partly separated. The breakfast room features an island with bar-top seating, and large bay windows fill both the living and dining rooms with plenty of natural light. A bonus room on the main floor currently serves as a playroom, and the guest bedroom upstairs has its own deck overlooking the backyard. A deck off the kitchen does the same.

You’ll find plenty of places to eat and neighborhood shopping close at hand, for this handsome house sits on a short street that ends at West Chester Pike just west of Manoa Road.

9 Columbus Ave., Havertown, Pa. 19083 [Kelsey Snyder | Keller Williams Realty]

Bright MLS image via Coldwell Banker Hearthside

Montgomery County: 3057 Pruss Hill Rd., Pottstown | 3 beds, 1 full, 1 half baths, 2,880 square feet, $499,500

Open house: Sunday, July 14th, 1 to 3 p.m.

This book you definitely can’t judge by its cover. It looks like a 1950s version of a plantation house on the outside thanks to that oversized portico, but once you pass through the front door, the beamed ceiling in the two front rooms and the large stone hearth fireplace in the bay-windowed living room serve as a tipoff to this house’s actual age, which is 199 years old. Even the rooms in the newer rear wing of this house pay homage to its Early American past: you’ll find beams and rustic cabinetry in the skylit vaulted kitchen ceiling and a stone-framed wood stove in the master bedroom’s sitting room on the second floor.

If you’ve dreamed of running your own landscaping, construction or other service business, this house located outside Sanatoga can handle it: in addition to its detached two-car garage, it has a second five-car garage and a 50- by 100-foot warehouse capable of storing heavy equipment behind its backyard. The fenced-in recreational part of the backyard has an in-ground pool and spa.

This house’s sale price was reduced by $45,500 on June 29th.

3057 Pruss Hill Rd., Pottstown, Pa. 19464 [Terry Musser | Coldwell Banker Hearthside]

open houses philadelphia manayunk victorian rowhou

Bright MLS image via BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors

Philadelphia: 4734 Frick St., Manayunk | 3 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths, 1,889 square feet, $299,900

Open house: Sunday, July 14th, 1 to 4 p.m.

This handsome Victorian stone row house dates to 1889, but it got a top-to-bottom makeover in 2012 that updated and upgraded it in a historically sensitive yet thoroughly modern manner. The exposed brick wall in the living room allows the tile-framed fireplace to stand out along with the big-screen TV you will surely mount above it. Crown moldings, traditional cabinetry, and hardwood and tile floors give the dining room and kitchen plenty of class, and the bedrooms upstairs offer loads of space (the second bedroom on the second floor was converted into a huge walk-in closet for the master bedroom in front). A large deck off the kitchen overlooks and has stairs leading down to a very green backyard that you can also access from the finished walkout basement.

This house is close enough to Main Street’s happening shopping and dining scene for you to walk or bike to it with ease, yet it’s also far enough away for you not to be bothered by the crowds of revelers who come over from the Main Line to party there on the weekends.

4734 Frick St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19127 [Nancy Matt | BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors]