Summer is ALWAYS HOT for Real Estate. Sellers like it because it seems everyone wants a piece of their house. Buyers like it because…. they want to buy a house, period.
There are pros and cons for both sides of the scenarios. Now that the Northwest Philadelphia area is HOT, you need to know the pros and cons for buying in areas like West Oak Lane, Mt. Airy, Germantown and Wayne. Each area is different and their are things to look for in each. Lets take Buying in each of the areas first:
1: West Oak Lane:
Buying here where the houses can range from 60k (needing work) like 2047 E Rittenhouse St, Philadelphia, PA 19138
to fully renovated homes topping off at upwards of $165K.. even some row homes asking $185,000 like: 1843 E Pastorius St, Philadelphia, PA 19138
- Buying here you have to decide whether you are willing to do some work or do you want it move in ready. “Developers” or simply called “Flippers” will gladly sell you a home on the upper scale of this area if you are willing to pay that amount. Usually you get a good, solid, sturdy well done home but you still need a home inspection (of course).
- Or, do you want to get a GREAT deal and supervise the creation of your first home for LESS than what it took the rehabbers would charge…. but this takes time.
- So as a buyer, know which of these categories you want to be in and to what degree you wish to have the “best house” or the “cheapest house” or where in between.
2: Mt Airy:
In East Mt. Airy the transformation of this neighborhood has slowly begun. As a generation of home owners that bought homes in this area in the 1970’s and 80’s begin to downsize or upgrade to heavenly status, these houses are left to family members (mainly children or grandchildren) that know very little about home ownership. Some flourish In their new role and others do not and they either sell or lose their home to taxes or other issues. These houses in turn are being redone and turned into premium homes in the neighborhood or quick sales for the handy home owners.
Organizations: EMAN (East Mount Airy Neighbors)
So you find homes that are renovated nicely and at the upper end of the neighborhood price point or much cheaper and in need of renovation. Sooo, your choices are clear. Decide to what extent you want to have a bit of a “fixer-upper” and have your agent negotiate accordingly.
West Mt. Airy as an area has generally more single detached homes and twin homes that East Mt Airy. these homes tend to be larger in size, more diverse in style/ architecture and somewhat more pricy because of the previous two factors. Unlike East Mt Airy, this area has a history of being a highly sought out neighborhood and its sales are consistent.
For the buyer that means, not many opportunity for deals. Most homes are in average or better condition and do not stay on the market long. Although their are some “estate” (home owner passes away and their family or estate are selling the property) and “distressed” (in poor condition).
Bottom line: Larger Homes, larger prices, slightly higher taxes.
Germantown is very interesting as some parts are in the throws of a revitalization in full bloom and others are lagging behind and full of distressed homes in need of a “good owner”. For buyer-investors this area is a GOLD MINE. Organizations like Mt Airy USA and Ken Weinstein and Jumpstart Germantown.
Germantown is quite literally the bridge between Logan on one side, Chestnut Hill on another and Roxborough of yet another side.
We will explore deep into Germantown next week. It is far to complicated to cover with the two other areas we focused on. The one thing I can leave this post with for Germantown is “Location, Location, Location”.
Be well all,