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Condo Source: The Cigar Factory Lofts

In Philadelphia, we like to name our condominiums after the building's history. Case in point: The Cigar Factory Lofts in Northern Liberties.

The History: The building was formerly owned by Theobold & Oppenheimer Company, one of the largest cigar manufacturers in Philadelphia.  It is said that most of Theobold & Oppenheimer's 700 employees were female.

The Goods: Today, the Lofts at 1147 N. 4th St. are much more gender diverse. The loft's features include high ceilings made with timber plank, exposed brick, large windows, hardwood floors, granite countertops throughout, and marble showers in the luxury bathrooms.

In the Neighborhood: With secure on-site parking for residents, and a vibrant neighborhood outside, the Cigar Factory is smartly located next to Liberties Walk and two blocks from the Piazza at Schmidt's.  The 30 units spread over 6 floors have some great skyline views.

It's a modern luxury loft with a little bit of history...

Read more about Philadelphia condominiums with our Condo Source.

Cigar Factory Lofts
1147 N. 4th St.


Platform Shoes…Platform Beds… Trends that Will Sell Your Home.

West Elm Chunky Wood Bed FrameIf you are staging your condo in preparation for a sale or you are just looking to ramp up your current home decor... fashion trends, like design trends, can transform a space instantly.

Get noticed.

The Platform Bed is a trend that we paid attention to when updating the bedroom of our Northern Liberties condo.  Our sleigh bed just wasn't current enough. Sometimes it takes a platform pump to announce your arrival, just like a sleek bed can call all eyes to the bedroom floor.

The platform bed that we chose, from West Elm,  was bold and modern - a refreshing glass of cool, especially paired with the low wood cutout headboard.

Stay tuned for the final reveal! Read more about our new Real Estate Collective with Voila Design!

For more advice on home staging, check out the 21 Designer Tips that Sell Houses from Voila Design.


5 Bedroom Home For Sale in Fishtown, Philadelphia Unique Oversized Home w/ Hardwoods, Fireplace & French Doors

5 Bedroom Home for Sale in Fishtown, Philadelphia

Call The Somers 215-400-2620, RE/MAX Access, Northern Liberties, Philadelphia

2521 E Lehigh Avenue

Photo Gallery

2521 E Lehigh Avenue

Unique over-sized corner property on the border of Fishtown/East Kensington/Port Richmond neighborhoods.

Gorgeous, original hardwood floors throughout. Enter through the foyer to an extra wide living room with a fireplace and half bath.

Dining room is separated by original French doors that lead to a huge eat-in kitchen.

2 sets of steps take you to a wide hallway that opens to 3 average sized beds and a bathroom, book-ended by 2 larger bedrooms with extra closet space.

2521 E Lehigh Avenue

Living room, dining room, 4 beds, full bath and hallway, all have closets.

Basement has an abundant amount of space, plus a separate workshop area.

Yard is bigger than most and the side street is a dead end. The perfect combination for parking, parties, bbqs, etc.

Must see to truly appreciate its size and beauty.

Discover more about Life in Fishtown

Fore more details contact:

Ryan Schaffer 267-226-1924

[email protected]

The Somers Team of Philadelphiat


Remax Access, Northern Liberties


Hulk Hoagie: The 1.25 Mile Wawa Hoagie in Philadelphia

Tomorrow is Wawa Hoagie Day, and as part of Philadelphia's Welcome America Celebration, the four ton sandwich will be served at 7 pm to the public on the Art Museum steps. Mayor Michael Nutter will deem June 30 "Hoagie Heritage Day"  with a hoagie building competition, a Rocky look-a-like contest, and a screening of the Rocky film at 9 pm. Only in Philadelphia would an event like this ever make sense. Go grab a bite just to say you did.

Wawa Hoagie Day
June 30, 7 pm
Philadelphia Museum of Art


Wild Things at Penn Treaty Park

Penn Treaty Park's new website is just the start of the riverside park's latest plans. Your favorite Fishtown retreat will host a series of events this summer, so we noticed while checking out the updated site.

On July 13, an outdoor movie that seems perfectly suited for the park, Where the Wild Things Are, will be shown.

July 14 promises a Philly Folk Parade, July 21 is set for Charanga with Salsa lessons, and August 4 is time for the Philebrity Rock & Roll Barbecue.

Have a look at their summer schedule and next time you find yourself in a lethargic summer state, put on your sunblock and shades and make eyes at Penn Treaty Park for your entertainment.

Explore more about Life in Fishtown. Ready to search for Fishtown properties?


Clean Up Your Act with Tidy Dwellings

Owner Anthony Oriti of Tidy Dwellings backs up one of our strongest mantras:

A Clean House is a Sold House.

Oriti has been in the cleaning business for a long time.  He decided to start his own company, Tidy Dwellings, to offer residential and commercial cleaning doing what he knows best - bringing a sense of sanity to the messiest and most disorganized of interiors.

We know from our experience that showing a home that's not in the tidiest of conditions is often crippling. So if you're selling a home, it's in your best interest to make certain that your property is sparkling. It seems like common sense, but you'd be surprised at the many sellers who think they can get away with a quick cleanup and a couple of minutes with a duster. That's  just not enough in today's market.

Sometimes you need a thorough top-to-bottom scrubbing, and you may not have the time to do it or the patience to do it. We've worked with Tidy Dwellings many times (they keep our Northern Liberties condo in check!) and can tell you that they're our absolute first choice for residential cleaning. From Fishtown to South Philly to the Art Museum area, Tidy Dwellings will make your property ready to show - at its best. Contact Anthony at Tidy Dwellings today to schedule your home cleaning.

Tidy Dwellings


Old City Condos - The Benefits of Staging: Before and After


The Somers Team and Voila Design: A Dream Bedroom Comes to Life

The Somers Team's first job with Voila Design was personal - that's how we know how amazing their design work is. We had the pleasure of experiencing it firsthand. We love our jobs as realtors and are busy and relentless when it comes to helping our buyers and sellers every day. It's easy to come home exhausted, and forget about our own dwelling. So we were quite happy to invite Voila Design over for some inspiration.

Somers Bedroom Before

The Interior Design Division came by to walk through our Northern Liberties condo with us and break it down room by room. We let them know what our vision was for our living space and the Voila experts took all of our concerns and found solutions. They were hands on and had no problem transforming pieces of furniture that we wanted to keep and finding the extra items that we needed to create a place we could be more comfortable in. They were warm and funny and totally flexible. Things were looking good.

This is our bedroom before the transformation. What will Voila Design do with it?

Stay tuned for the final reveal! Read more about our new Real Estate Collective with Voila Design!


A Home is Only As Good As the Contractor Who Built It

VAR Construction Fireplace

Finding a contractor that can meet your deadlines and negotiate complex work orders is a challenge that we, as realtors, face often.

Time and time again, we've found that VAR Construction, Inc., have professionally met our needs on all challenges and have far exceeded our expectations. From basic home repairs to full-blown makeovers, VAR can make it happen, on time and on budget.

VAR Construction PatioThis New Kensington-based home improvement company is licensed, bonded, and insured. They serve the Greater Philadelphia region and have a staff of contractors and engineers that are respectful, talented, and attentive to the finer details.

VAR Construction Inc
2557 Amber Street
Philadelphia, PA 19125-1722
(215) 728-0951


5 Things to Do After June 30th to Grow Your Business !

5  Things to Do After June 30th to Grow Your Business

If you are like us, we have been incredibly busy due to the Tax Credit stimulus. The weeks leading up to April 30th were crazy getting buyers under contract and having the majority of our listings fly off the shelve, several with multiple offers.  All of those deals have either already settled or will be settling in the next few days. It has been an incredible 2010 for The Somers Team already !

However, we do not want the momentum and the activity to stop. We do believe that the 2nd half of the year will be much slower than the first half.   How can it not be when so much demand was pushed up to the first half ?  But with mortgage rates so low, that will be a driving force for the second half to be stable. In addition, below is a list of things we are planning to do to help grow our business for the future and to have that kick-start going into 2011 !

1.  Take a vacation or take some "me" time

The old saying goes as soon as you go on vacation buyers will come out of the woodwork and a deal or two will come in on your listings.  It is a golden rule !  Try it ! More importantly it is so necessary to take a break and relax, rejuvenate and come back stronger !  Or if you do not do a vacation, take some time for yourself as there will be more time in the day.  For example, Stephanie just started taking Pilates classes and I have been to The Training Station 3 out of the last 4 days.  Hopefully we keep it up !

2.  Focus on your marketing and lead generation

When things get slower, that is the best time to lead generate. Focus in on your marketing efforts.  Take a look at your website.  What can you do to improve it ?  If you do not have a website, well now will be the time to get one.  Are you involved in Social Media ?  If not, now is the time to build your social media marketing strategies.  Take a look at what has been working for you and what has not been working as far as lead generation and develop a plan to build on the things that work and perhaps eliminate some of the things that do not.  We plan on making some enhancements and changes to our ever-growing The Somers Team site which should be a lot of fun.  Our goal is to always stay ahead of the curve from a technology and innovation standpoint.

3.  Blog Blog Blog

I am a big believer in blogging. Blog about your community, your stories, your experiences, your knowledge, public events, your clients.  Being that you will have more time, take advantage it and knock out several blogs per week.  If you do not have a blog, now is the time to get one !  If you have one but it has been static, set a goal for doing 2 or 3 blogs per week.  There has been a ton of testimonials from bloggers who have shared the business they have received from blogging.  We are no exception.  Our blog (s) have been a huge driver for us in terms of exposure and working with new propsects and clients as a result.

4. Network Network Network

This one is not an easy one for me as believe it or not, I have social anxiety disorder sometimes. But with having more time on your hands, what a great opportunity to get out there and do those things that you just did not have time to before with the tax credit frenzy.   Attend those tweet-ups, those broker opens, those networking opportunities for groups and civic associations, your neighborhood functions, volunteer groups and so forth.   This past week I attended "Homes 4 Hounds" and won 2 prizes from the raffle as well as the Northern Liberties Neighborhood Association monthly meeting which I have missed the last several months just being so busy.   As a result, I had the opportunity to see some folks and have some conversations with people I have not seen in awhile.  What a great way to stay connected !

5.  Jump into a niche area such as short sales

With things being slower, you can take on the more time consuming short sale deals of the world. If you are not doing these deals, now is the time to start !  Blog about it, do a few deals and begin to share that in your community.  I would think almost every city has folks who are in hardship and need the services of someone who knows what they are doing.  It is amazing here in Philadelphia how few agents really know how to do a short sale or what a short sale is and how it works.  We have sellers who find us and need our help just from the short sale blogs that we do.  If you are not interested in short sales, find that niche market in your area that you are not involved in yet and jump in !  You will be glad you did in 2011 when your business is up 10 to 20 percent !

These are just a few ideas. Of course, there are many more !  Please share what else you might do the second half of the year to kick-start your business into 2011 !  And please share your thoughts on the above in the comments below.

Let's kick butt the rest of the year !


Topping Off at the Shops at Schmidts

The Shops at Schmidts

We were very excited to hear that the topping off ceremony for the Shops at Schmidts is finally here. After all, we work right next to the construction site and watch the progress happen every day from our office. It's been quite entertaining and we've seen how quickly the Shops have gone up.

On Monday, June 28 at 2:30 pm, Bart Blatstein of Tower Investments will top off the 100,000 square foot retail center at 2nd St. and Girard Avenue, which will add a large Pathmark supermarket, retail outlets, and new residential units to the Northern Liberties neighborhood.  Completion and opening is scheduled for December 2010.

As always, we'll keep you posted as we hear about the Shops at Schmidts details. We know how important it is to buyers that they have a variety of shopping and grocery stores when researching an area to move to. A Pathmark that will serve Northern Liberties and Fishtown is another valuable neighborhood feature that will benefit all of us.

Update on the Shops at Schmidts in Northern Liberties

The Shops at Schmidts: Two Months In


Phone: 215.253.6818