We all know that it is looming, that dark unknown cloud coming to your neighborhood - the AVI - where real estate taxes will soar to help fund the ailing Philadelphia School District and the hapless City Council folks who cannot think of any other way to fund the City's budget woes and bankrupt City. I have created a handbook or in the spirit of football season, I have created a Playbook, if you will, of how this game will be played out.
Before I begin, let's all try to get to our happy place. Take several deep breaths. You are going to need some tools: a yoga mat, a hot cup of tea, Jack Daniels, and a valium. Oh, and keep your handbook (and your checkbook) ready for the months ahead. One last thing. Have your go-to attorney ready on speed dial because alttorneys will be busy with lots of appeals.
So what is going to happen ?
1. In December of this year, property owners will get their tax bill for 2013. Don't get too worked up. You can relax as this bill will be based on pre-AVI assessments. (Deep breath in. Deep breath out. It's a good time to grab your yoga meditation mat.)
2. Around that same time, you will get a notice of your new "AVI" assessment. This is the basis for calculating your 2014 bill, which will arrive later in the year. This is the time where you can call your Realtor and ask "Is this accurate?". If not, call your "go-to" attorney which you already have since you read this playbook and begin your appeal process immediately. Have your attorney on speed dial as he or she will be flooded with calls. (Better boil the hot water for that calming cup of tea now.)
3. Now that you've done the Yoga, sipped your tea, head for the bar for that shot of JD. While you are there, call your doctor for that prescription as you wait for City Council to finalize the tax policy as they will set the milage rate (tax rate) and they are not going to be fast about it. Once that rate is set you can actually determine your tax bill for 2014.
4. And most importantly, while you wait patiently on your bar stool, set up a bank account and put money aside so you can budget this increase. This will help ease the pain. Perhaps cutting back on your own excesses - such as the dreaded soft drinks, basic food and water and the like, will be a good idea so we can all pay for the sins of Philadelphia, such as Carl Greene and Arlene Ackerman.
If you are still sober at this time, we can watch how this brilliant plan will effect the real estate market, rents of tenants and the local economy. And pray as several unintended consequences such as property values depreciating, rents escalating and local neighborhood commercial districts suffering in order to fund the budget woes of the City of Philadelphia occur. More properties will go into foreclosure and there will be more tax sales when and if the City ever gets around to collecting the taxes due. And of course, new construction and the hated tax abatements will be even that much more in demand versus the row home across the street whose taxes were just hiked 5X. Brilliance at its best! Remember it is important to not ask Council Members to "DROP DROP" as that is far too important for them to keep with our taxpayer money as they are doing such a great job.
Lastly, we can hope and pray that the City will act more fiscally responsible and that our services will increase and be more efficient after our taxes are hiked. For many, their taxes will be hiked 5X so maybe their services will increase 5X as well? We can only hope so. If not, maybe we can all plan for another AVI in 2016 and do it all over again?
In the meantime, brace yourself, do your yoga and deep breaths in order to prepare, especially if you live in Northern Liberties, Fishtown, Old Kensington, South Kensington, Fairmount, Art Museum, Chinatown, Loft District, Queen Village, Old City, Center City, Rittenhouse Square, Fitler Square, Graduate Hospital, Point Breeze (this area might be protected), South Philly, Passyunk Square and Pennsport or any area that "gentrified". I am sure I am missing a few spots but heck, we have been told it only affects a few areas by our City leaders.
Introducing 6 NEW Construction Luxury Homes in Northern Liberties at 1018-1028 N Leithgow Street...
3 Bedrooms. 2.5 Baths. Garages and full 12' tall Basements.
Want the details? We thought so. Contact the Somers Team for more info!
Welcome to 1903 Annin Street in Point Breeze...a beautiful, immaculate 2 bedroom, 1.5 bath property, with a fenced in cemented yard and a finished basement.
This home has been completely remodeled and updated. Beautiful hardwood floors on the first floor, crown molding and chair rails throughout with attention to detail at every inch. The formal living room offers plenty of space for seating and there is a formal dining room area spacious enough for a large table and server. The kitchen is beautiful with glass back splash, 42" cabinets, stainless appliances and granite counters. Under the cabinent lighting in your choice of color! The bedroom level offer a large hall bath fully tiled and 2 spacious bedrooms. Bath has been completely redone with custom vanity, mirror and tile. Bedrooms offer ample closet space.
Block is easy to park. This is one of the hottest neighborhoods in the city with its growth and activity. Quick walk to Center City! Brand new HVAC, electric and plumbing. Available immediately, just unpack your bags! Easy to show. All yours for only $239,900! For more information, contact the Somers Team.
Metro's Philadelphia Eater's Guide noted some of our favorite foodie destinations beyond cheesesteak purveyors... the often overlooked Philly is full of exciting new restaurant concepts and incredible chefs and dishes that don't often get the recognition that they deserve. So this week's tip? Eat up! Here's a few more places to check out next time you're in town:
In Northern Liberties and Point Breeze:
Circles is the beloved thai BYO that opened a location in Northern Liberties earlier this year, bringing the spice to another hot neighborhood. Try the seitan satay and the best pad thai in the city, then take a stroll over to the Piazza or Liberties Walk to cool off.
In Rittenhouse Square:
Vernick Food & Drink is worth checking out for their delicious "toast" creations, such as the fromage blanc and pickled cherries or the charred spinach and leeks. This bistro knocks out some beautiful dishes and craft cocktails, all with a great view of Walnut Street. Head to Rittenhouse Square or to the Franklin for an after-dinner cocktail.
Both Frankford Hall and Loco Pez rank high on our list for excellent scene-watching in the eclectic Fishtown neighborhood. And the food and drink are swell, too! The former is a funky beer garden with enormous pretzels and even bigger beers to work those biceps. The latter pumps out super cheap tacos and margs for a lively crowd. We recommend visiting earlier or on a weekday to get a seat, as wait times can be long on weekends. Then experience the 14 Reasons to Live in Fishtown.
So welcome! We hope you can squeeze in a visit to one of these essential Philly eateries on your visit.
Welcome to this fabulous row home just North of Northern Liberties on the tip of Old Kensington! 223 W Oxford Street was crafted by a fabulous Philadelphia designer and left nothing out!
Walk into a spacious first floor where your living, kitchen and dining room have been uniquely crafted as a waterfall welcomes you to the stairs entering the second floor. You will find a full modern bathroom along with two spacious bedrooms. The master bed and bath are found on the beautiful and SPACIOUS bi-leveled third floor where you will find gorgeous natural lighting from skylights. Look up and see magnificent crafted ceilings. Walk into the grand bathroom where you will find dual headed showers and vanities. A HUGE walk-in closet makes this the perfect match for you. Gorgeous, Brazilian hardwood floors throughout!
Schedule your appointment today! Owner occupied, at least 24 hours advanced notice to show. For more information, contact the Somers Team.
Scouting out your dream property in Fishtown? 1244 E Fletcher Street is a great block and awesome location to build new property! The possibilities are endless here. This is a great eighteen foot wide by one hundred ft garage/lot Street to Street. Zoned R10A with two curb cuts located on the Fletcher side and one on the Colona Street side. This could be built into two duplexes with this amount of space.
For more information, contact the Somers Team.
Meet our... Fully UPDATED 3 Bedroom Home in Fishtown with 1 full bath and a 1st floor powder room, large unfinished basement and nice size rear yard. 2616 E Dauphin Street is ready for a new era.
We welcome your visit... This home has an open floor plan and hard wood floors throughout. There is plenty of living space for a formal dining area and the kitchen is large enough for a dining table as well. Plenty of interior decorating options available to you since the space is so open. The upper floor offers a shared hall bath, custom tile work and a large vanity. Central air, gas cooking, basement laundry hook ups, new windows, new doors, slider glass door that leads to the yard, and a new facade. All mechanicals are new.
All of this for only $225,000... For more information, contact the Somers Team.
Mark your calendars and gather your old electronics for E-waste Collection Day in Northern Liberties on Saturday, September 28th from 10am-2pm. Old tvs, printers, computers, fax machines, stereo equipment, as well as small kitchen appliances (no large appliances like fridges or ovens) will be properly disposed of at the NLNA Community Center (NW corner 3rd & Fairmount) for a small fee.
1903 Annin Street - Open House from 1:30-3:30PM
Offered at $239,900
Stop by today to tour this beautiful, immaculate completely 2 bedroom, 1.5 bath property, with a fenced in cemented yard and a finished basement. This home has been completely remodeled and updated.
Noteworthy features include:
- Beautiful hardwood floors on the first floor
- Crown molding and chair rails throughout
- Formal living room
- Formal dining room
- Kitchen is beautiful with glass back splash, 42" cabinets, stainless appliances and granite counters (you’ll want to check out the special under cabinet light features too!)
- Bedroom level includes large hall bath and 2 spacious bedrooms
- 1 block to the park and an easy walk to Center City
This home is available immediately and won’t last long!
If unable to tour these properties on Sunday call us to schedule your tour at 215-400-2600 - Ask for Chris or Stephanie Somers.
Remax Access - The Somers Team
Chris and Stephanie Somers