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July 7, 2017

Trends I am Seeing In The Philadelphia Condo Market

Filed under: For Buyers,For Sellers,Real Estate: Condominiums,State of Marketplace — Center City Philadelphia Real Estate Agent @ 2:49 pm

1) Kitchens are going gray and white and are getting smaller than say 20 years ago, and are rarely the “eat-in” variety.

2) More attention is being paid to security. Wireless cameras and monitoring systems are being added and/or upgraded to most new construction condos in Philadelphia.

3) The new design focus is on room size and NOT room count. Most buyers today can do without the true blue 3 bedrooms. Most newer condos are now 2 beds & den. Finding a true 3 bedroom is huge…but rare.

4) The use of quartz over granite is the new trend. Also mixing counter tops is hot- Island counter top may be different than interior kitchen counter top.

5) Most new construction does not have closet space finished. Developers leave them blank for buyer to finish. And I find little difference in resale value if you use high-end closet brand vs. a reasonable knock-off brand. Just maximize your space.

Mark Wade
BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors
www.CenterCityCondos.com

 

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June 12, 2017

This Summer Matters – Here’s Why… The summer sales market is usually subdued, but not this summer.

Our Center City condo market is very cyclical. Every year about the same time in early March, my phone rings off the hook and that trend continues through say 4th of July. Then anyone with enough money to buy a condo, also has enough money to be sitting their butts on a beach somewhere.
This early part of the summer 2017 tells a bit of a different story. Nearly everyday for the past 3 months we have seen our inventory shrink – DAILY.
When I study the daily MLS activity sheet, I see say 20 new homes on the market. But I see 27 or so go under contract. EVERY DAY.
I would venture to guess this trend will continue through the summer – the lack of overall inventory suggests as much. And there are more buyers lingering in the market today than in the past dozen or so years – they can’t find the right place so they sit on the sidelines and wait. The backlog is staggering.
Usually we see a decrease in activity after Memorial Day. Hasn’t been the case and most likely will not be the case until sometime in say August, I would wager.
Mark Wade
Mark@centercity.com

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April 28, 2017

16 Buildings in 5 Words or less…

Hopkinson House – The Toyota of Center City dependability.
Ten Rittenhouse – Really amazing value growth & demand.
1830 Rittenhouse – It’s 1830. Enough said.
River’s Edge (2301 Cherry St.) – Buy! I think they’re undervalued.
Waterfront Square– Peace & Tranquility. Views for miles.
Murano (2101 Market St)– Prices & demand continue to escalate.
Naval Square – Huge demand. Huge.
Rittenhouse Hotel & Condominiums– What’s not to like? Really.
BridgeView Place (315 New St)–  It’s just hot money. Buy Now.
Philadelphian (2401 PA. Ave.) – Values driven by interior condition & view.
Tivoli (1900 Hamilton)– Some Penthouse finally being sold off.
Center City One (1326 Spruce) – Best floor plans & Great Values!
The National (112 N. 2nd) – Soft lofts at reasonable prices & parking.
St. James Court (Society Hill) – User friendly & Cool Mod. Still Relevant.
9xx-10xx Spruce – Townhouse styled and Jefferson adjacent. Bingo.
Two Liberty (50 S. 16th St) – #1 Views and #1 model units – Gorgeous!
Mark Wade
Mark@CenterCity.com
CenterCityCondos.com

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March 30, 2017

16 Buildings in 5 Words or less…

Hopkinson House – The Toyota of Center City dependability.

Ten Rittenhouse – Really amazing value growth & demand.

1830 Rittenhouse – It’s 1830. Enough said.

River’s Edge (2301 Cherry St.) – Buy! I think they’re undervalued.

Waterfront Square– Peace & Tranquility. Views for miles.

Murano (2101 Market St)– Prices & demand continue to escalate.

Naval Square – Huge demand. Huge.

Rittenhouse Hotel & Condominiums– What’s not to like? Really.

BridgeView Place (315 New St)–  It’s just hot money. Buy Now.

Philadelphian (2401 PA. Ave.) – Values driven by interior condition & view.

Tivoli (1900 Hamilton)– Some Penthouse finally being sold off.

Center City One (1326 Spruce) – Best floor plans & Great Values!

The National (112 N. 2nd) – Soft lofts at reasonable prices & parking.

St. James Court (Society Hill) – User friendly & Cool Mod. Still Relevant.

9xx-10xx Spruce – Townhouse styled and Jefferson adjacent. Bingo.

Two Liberty (50 S. 16th St) – #1 Views and #1 model units – Gorgeous!

Mark Wade
BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors
www.CenterCityCondos.com

• • •

March 13, 2017

Popular Seller Mistakes

Most sellers are smart and if not, at least teachable.  Though, when they are not, I see them leave money on the table. Here are some common mistakes I see sellers make:
1) Allowing agents to put crappy photos into the MLS
 
    I see this ALL the time. The MLS allows 25 photos any many online sites will rank your position based on the number of photos. Since out of town/out of state buyers usually know what they want to see when they contact me, their list always corresponds to the quality of the photos submitted to the MLS.  Insist upon professional photos or find a new agent.
2) Moving out physically, and then mentally doing the same
 
So often I show condos where the seller has moved- both physically and mentally. Dirt, debris are left behind and the condo looks like someone left in the middle of the night. First impressions MATTER..and buyers will pay for that impression.
3) Not telling your insurance carrier that you sold your home
 
IF you seller your condo in the middle of any insurance pay cycle- you should call your insurance carrier and request the refund of the unused portion of that pay cycle. Your mortgage company will not do this for you.
4) Not adjusting your price as your condo sits on the market
Some of the best deals for buyers are those condos that sit on the market for a while- as long as the seller is adjusting his or her price accordingly. When a seller doesn’t move on the asking price, the listing gets stale and the demand for that unit will drop. So will its value.
5) Not staging or at least preparing your home for the market
Buyers don’t buy bricks and mortar. They buy feelings and emotions. Staging works. And every seller should be spending around $500-$1000 to prepare his or condo for sale such as:
* Minor Grout and Caulking around tubs, baseboards, etc.
* Rehanging Closet doors that are off their tracks
* Minimal touch up painting
* De-cluttering (this is huge)
* Minor cosmetic fixes throughout

• • •

January 5, 2017

Center City One Condominiums at 1326 Spruce St. – Some updated info!

Filed under: Center City Real Estate,For Buyers,Real Estate: Condominiums,State of Marketplace — Center City Philadelphia Real Estate Agent @ 12:40 pm

A Great Value! With 182 individual condominium units, and 86 deeded parking spots, Center City One Condominiums have a great reputation for being a solid Philadelphia real estate buy. A mix of studio, one, and two bedroom units, Center City One condos near the center of Philadelphia, at Broad and Spruce Streets, have great views – either offering wonderful city views, or wonderfully bright, sun-drenched southern views. These Washington Square West condos are located in the 19107 zip code, and all units at Center City One are flats- no loft condo units at 1326 Spruce exist. We find many Philly real estate buyers delighted with what they can buy for their money at Center City One.

As a veteran Philly real estate agent who specializes in condo sales, I hear a lot of feedback that the building has a strong on-site management team, an active condo association, and of course liberal pet policies.  Parking, and the building’s close proximity to Avenue of the Arts really allow this building to “fire on all cylinders”.  All condos at 1326 Spruce have their own HVAC systems.

Center City One condos hold some of the best values in town, and the two bed/two bath 1209 sq ft units have the BEST floor plan in town for city living. The owners association updated all hallways, the lobby, and elevators in 2013…and did a great job. In 2016, the exterior of the building was pointed and power washed. The balconies were painted and the wood rails were stained. Also, many of the owners have purchased upgraded windows and balcony doors. Exterior lighting in the garage and under the portico was replaced with LED fixtures, making the building more energy efficient.

When units become available for sale, prices can fluctuate and are generally contingent upon views and interior condition. You may find some original condition condos at great prices, but expect to pay a premium for some of the stunningly upgraded condos in the building- though I think either are a strong value. If I had millions of dollars, I would probably spend most of them inside this building if I wanted to make money. The location and floor plan are tough to beat.

Mark Wade
www.CenterCityCondos.com
BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors
215-521-1523

• • •

September 27, 2016

Rising home prices, quick sales – Philly’s in a sellers’ market (Mark’s Two Cents on Philly.com)

Filed under: Center City Real Estate,General Real Estate,Of Interest to Buyers,Real Estate: Condominiums,State of Marketplace — Center City Philadelphia Real Estate Agent @ 9:54 am

Alan J. Heavens, Philly.com’s Real estate writer says, “The city of Philadelphia is officially a sellers’ real estate market, as a continued shortage of inventory has pushed up prices for properties listed for sale.”
skyline_west

Economist Kevin Gillen, senior research fellow at Drexel University’s Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation, said the second quarter of 2016, which ended June 30, saw median prices 13 percent higher than April-through-June 2015.

…Gillen isn’t exactly sure why homeowners aren’t rushing to list their houses, but Mark Wade, an agent with Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Fox & Roach Realtors, cites several factors.

Mostly, it is “because many buyers in town over the last few decades have been empty nesters who believe they have made their final move and don’t need to downsize or adjust their living quarters to match their future needs,” Wade said.

The “flip side of rising house prices is decreased housing affordability,” Gillen said.

“Prices are now rising faster than household incomes, which implies that home buyers must now sacrifice a greater portion of their wealth to buy a home than they would otherwise, or else must defer the purchase of a home altogether,” he said.

Click here to read the full article on Philly.com.

Mark Wade
www.CenterCityCondos.com
BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors
Mark@CenterCity.com ~ 215.521.1523

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September 21, 2016

Top Ten Philly Condos

Filed under: For Buyers,General Real Estate,Real Estate: Condominiums,State of Marketplace — Center City Philadelphia Real Estate Agent @ 10:41 am

In terms of value retention, resale ability and livability…Here are my latest top ten picks:

Waterfront Square

1) 1706 Rittenhouse at 1706 Rittenhouse St. – – There can be little doubt that the building shines in terms of value growth and demand. The highest of high end here in Center City. Buyers line up for these units- Who wouldn’t want to live at 1706 ??

2) Kahn Park Place at 1119-25 Pine St.– Parking, roof decks and nice interior space…at prices that I think are undervalued. Homerun! Location is key here as well. Interior condition drives the wide range of values here.

3) Washington Square West Condos on the 12xx Block of South St. – Solid investments in a high growth area. Oh, and all have parking and two bedrooms! You can’t beat these simple yet value driven condos. Boom!

4) St. James Court in Society Hill – 40 years old condos with interiors that clearly stand the test of time. Undervalued and best deals in the 19106 zip code. Most units are off street and quiet. Interior courtyard is picture perfect. You can’t beat the prices in this segment in my opinion.

5) The Coronado at 2201 Chestnut St.– Improvements to the building make the investment here a solid one in terms of value growth. And in the 19103 zip code to boot.

6) The Lenox at 250 S. 13th St.– Not unlike 2201 Chestnut Street in the fact that it is a pre-war styled condo building that has undergone many recent upgrades and improvements. Since the Parker across the street closed- are values poised for a significant bounce upwards? Probably.

7) Center City One at 1326 Spruce St. – If I had millions of dollars, I would probably spend most of them inside this building if I wanted to make money.
Try to beat the location and the floor plan of the two bed, two bath units.
No supply here.

8) The Philadelphian at 2401 Pennsylvania Ave. – Values for the larger units bounced higher and faster than any other segment in Center City. Many reasons which can be attributed to the association…and lack of supply didn’t hurt either.

9) Low Rise Condos in 19103 and 19107– Perpetual demand leads to a shortened “days on market” for many in this segment. Solid purchases and solid returns. And those near Jefferson and U of Penn have a double good whammy- which is huge rent-ability.

10) 2200 Arch St. Condos at 2200 Arch St. – Probably the quickest sales in the loft like segment here in town. Parking, close to jogging trail and in the 19103 zip code. This place is firing on all cylinders.

Honorable Mention:  The Reef Building at WaterFront Square 901 N. Penn St. – Just about 6 units remain and the values are climbing faster than most other buildings around town. Expect another bump in values when the building completely sells out. Philadelphian’s are warming to the idea of living in this lovely gated community. Though I am biased…We own and live here.

Mark Wade
BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors
www.CenterCityCondos.com
215.521.1523 | Mark@CenterCity.com

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September 17, 2016

Some Basics on Buying a Condo (Read Mark’s Two Cents on Philly.com)

Filed under: For Buyers,General Real Estate,Real Estate: Condominiums,State of Marketplace — Center City Philadelphia Real Estate Agent @ 8:34 pm

“Once you decide on a location, the next step in your search for housing is determining whether to rent or buy.” Philly.com Real Estate Writer, Alan J. Heavens then said, “If you decide to buy, the next question is what.  A growing number of Americans are choosing condominiums, especially in urban areas.”

Mark Wade, of Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Fox & Roach Realtors in Center City, said there are three main reasons buyers give when opting to buy a condominium: “one-level living – absence of stairs; a lack of maintenance requirements; and the security of a 24-hour front doorman.”

1830

“Many younger buyers are attracted to condos because they are so consumed with their careers that they simply don’t have the time or energy for the needs of a single-family home,” he said.

Many empty-nesters are looking to rid themselves of the upkeep that a larger single-family home may require, Wade said.

“The trade-off between a single-family home and a condo is usually location and size,” he said.

Condo living affords buyers the opportunity “to lose up to a few thousand square feet of unused, unwanted space, or perhaps three unused bedrooms – quite a weight lifted for those looking to simplify their lives.”

Click here to read the full article on Philly.com.

Mark Wade
CenterCityCondos.com
B
HHS Fox & Roach Realtors
215.521.1523

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December 29, 2014

More Super Duper Condo Comp Data

Click the LINKS above for Full details
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