Friday, August 14, 2009

Information Overload

I don't even know where to begin. I had an appt today to look a ton of place w/ my realtor's assistant. I'll talk about a bunch of the places I saw, but only really show you the pictures of the ones I really liked. We started off at CityView apartments and then worked our way west through Fairmount.

City View
We looked at 2 apartments here, one of which was listed as a 2br, but was really a 1br w/ a den (but really look like 1 long room). CityView used to be a business hotel so the rooms and kitchens are still set up like that. One apartment I went in was the 1br w/ bathroom, w/d, etc. The 2nd bedroom was accessed by a door w/ a lock on it that leads to what must have originally been a studio. The bedroom had a mini-fridge, sink, etc., the bathroom, and another set of w/d. That's right. The apt. came w/ 2 washers and dryers! Anyway, I didn't like the set ups so we immediately crossed them off our list.

2231 Green St.
When I saw this listing I got really excited. This section of Green St. has some beautiful homes, most of which have been chopped up and turned into condos. This place was similar to the one I saw yesterday on Spruce in that it had the living room on the main floor and the bedrooms at street level. The difference here is that the foot traffic is much lighter, so more privacy. Didn't matter much b/c I didn't quite care for it. The place would have required a lot changes and the kitchen was tiny. Also, you had to go thru one of the bedrooms to use the bathroom. Blech. Cross that off my list.

781 Judson St.
Ok, the funny part about this street is a friend of mine used to live on the same block, so I know it pretty well. It's a nice and quiet side street b/w Aspen and Brown. It's about 1,000 square feet w/ 2 br. You walk in and it was a nice open floor plan w/ pumpkin pine hwd floors. The kitchen, unfortunately was a small galley type kitchen, but then again, how much do I really cook? There was a little patio out back that could fit a table and 2 chairs and a grill (hallelujah!). The HVAC unit was right next to the table instead of on the side, so it was a bit loud out back.

The 2nd floor, also w/ hwd floors, had 2 brs and small bathroom (typical of the street). The main br was big enough to fit a queen and still get around ok.

The basement was partially finished. The owner had her desk and electronics down there, so there must not be an issue w/ water in the basement. The laundry room (unfinished part) was a decent size.

I definitely liked it, so I'll keep it on the list.

738 Taylor St.
We didn't realize this was a trinity until we walked in. I don't know how I missed it in the description. Probably b/c the sq footage was listed as 1,000. Well, as far as trinities go, this was beautiful! I'll post pictures b/c I just loved it. The main floor was a decent size and kitchen was beautiful. They did a good job on it. Also, the back patio was bigger than the one on Judson.

The main problem was that the stairs were far steeper and narrower than the trinity I looked at yesterday. Ugh. The 2nd floor den was done very nicely, as was the bedroom on the 3rd floor. Again, the stairs just killed me, especially the ones down to the basement. Funny how it was the same sq. footage as Judson, but the layout was sooooo different. As cute as it was, the stairs were a bitch and I had to cross it off my list.

777 25th St.
This house is on 25th which is one of the main roads thru Fairmount. This house is over 1100 sq. ft. and is also b/w Aspen and Brown. It had newer hwd floors on the first floor and pumpkin pine hwd floors on the 2nd floor. The 1st floor was a nice size and open. The kitchen was a much nicer size, but not recently redone. The cabinets were painted and the appliances were a little older.

The door to the nice-sized patio had a dog/cat pass thru. The banister on the stairs was really neat and a bit different. The 2nd floor has 2 brs, one of which has a nice window seat that could double as a bed. The bathroom was also a normal size and looks like it had recently been done. The main bed was also a good size and the windows were pretty good at keeping the sound out. I didn't notice the sounds of traffic on the street.

The basement was finished and would be a good place to put my treadmill. Also, the laundry room was nice and clean w/ a sink. The main downfall was the lack of central air. There was a window unit in the LR that quickly cooled down the 1st floor. The 2nd floor would also need window units until I put in central air. Overall, I liked it, so it's staying on my list.

2614 Folsom and 2709 Swain
These 2 places were fairly similar in size and layout. The one was redone a little better than the other, but for the size and location, it was way overpriced. Also, the selling agent had to let us in and kept trying to sell me and ask me questions. Really, it made me dislike the place more. Also, the expensive one didn't even have closets and the one "closet" in the master was barely functional. I didn't like the basements or the bathrooms. Essentially, they both came off the list.

891 Stillmun St.
Up until this point, I was pretty familiar w/ the neighborhoods I was looking at. This house was 2 blocks north of Brown right where Girard meets Poplar by the gas station (for those of you from Philly) across from Girard College. That being said, the house was a few doors down from Poplar and on a quiet, one-way street. The house was on the smaller size -- 840 sq. ft. -- but what it was lacking on size was made up for in other areas. This house had definitely been redone recently. It had an exposed brick wall on one side, going up to the 2nd floor. The LR was on the smaller side, while the kitchen was a much larger size w/ room for a table and chairs. The kitchen was brand new w/ new appliances and cabinetry. The main floor was very bright, which is always a good thing for me.

The upstairs was carpeted w/ an ok-sized bathroom, and 2 br. 2nd bedroom was small but had a nice closet. The main br was bright w/ a bit of exposed brick. The basement was unfinished, but was clean.

It wasn't until I reached the kitchen and fully looked out the back window that I found the best part of the house -- a backyard. There was vegetation, a tree, soil, and room for an outdoor table and chairs (and a grill of course) on the wooden part of the patio. Wow.

All in all, I liked it, but I need to see the area at a different time of day. I'll try to drive by tonight (if I can manage to peel myself off the couch) and see what it looks like. It's only been on the market 7 days, a few days, so it's hard to tell if it will sell quickly or not. Needless to say, it stays on the list.

934 Bambrey St.
This house was a pretty good size -- 11oo sq ft -- but b/c of its location, it was a bit less than the others I looked at today. Not only is it b/w Poplar and Girard, it was just behind the gas station I mentioned above. The walk up the street from Poplar is isolated and deserted before reaching homes. The inside was very nice with 3 bedrooms, a large bathroom, a good size patio, a very nice kitchen and a 3/4 bath on the 1st floor. Sadly, all that could not make up for the location. Not only do I not feel comfortable w/ the location, I can just picture my mom's face as she drives up to it. So, it's off the list.

838 Newkirk St.
Last but not least, this bi-level condo had a lot of stairs to climb before getting to the front door; however, aside from the CityView apartments, it did have parking. It was nice inside w/ a little exposed brick for character and a 1/2 bath on the 1st floor. The bedrooms upstairs were ok, but I did not care for the loft character of the master bedroom. Really, what killed it for me was the stairs. Off the list.

That's it! I am wiped out. Plus, it was so hot today that I was just sopping wet and my clothes were starting to stick to me. I found 3 places that I like so far, but none of which I must jump on tomorrow. If any of them sell this weekend, I'll be ok. I do want to see some of the open houses and then go back and see them again on Mon. or Tues.

After loading all of these pictures, I realized two things. First, the backyard of Stillmun overshadowed other parts of the house I forgot about (like teeny tiny cramped bathroom). Second, the next time I do this, I'm uploading the pictures to flickr or picasa and just linking to it. This uploading thing, although it looks nice on the page, is way too time consuming!


Lisa said...

What a get forum to analyze the findings. I think the house on Bambrey belongs to a friend of Muffy from law school. Shame, cause the block does see a bit sketchy.

Mariss said...

That Stillum street house is gorgeous! I'll double check where it is, but I don't think it's THAT bad. You're still about 2 blocks below me. Plus, we just got something in the mail talking about the new funds (1.2 mil or something) that the Girard Coalition are using to update Girard from Front Street to Susquehana. They're starting this month, and are doing lots of improvements such as 63 new pedestrian lights, etc. We'll chat next time, but let me know if I need to keep an eye on any areas to determine sketchiness. xo