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Philadelphia Real Estate Blog

Shoppers eager to be first to snag Black Friday bargains rush into a store in Laramie, Wyo., when it opened on Thanksgiving evening. Philly cops in the early 1960s dreaded dealing with the crowds, leading them to give the busiest shopping day of the year its name.

We'd like to tear you away from the dinner preparations for...

What? You're not fixing, or getting ready to eat, Thanksgiving dinner?

If you're online, surfing shopping sites for early Black Friday deals, then this story is for you.

The day after Thanksgiving has become the single biggest day of the year on the retail calendar, and each year, retailers eager to lure shoppers through their doors push the start of the action earlier and earlier: stores open while everyone's still

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Sorry, Carpenters Union—it looks like you should have signed the new labor agreement when you had the chance, for it's already producing a dramatic turnaround in the Convention Center's fortunes; A new owner plans to finish the job the former owner started with a Mt. Airy apartment complex; the ZBA greenlights the conversion of the former Orinoka Mills in East Kensington into affordable apartments; and new drone footage shows off Philly's finest ruin porn:

Convention Center managers hail quick turnaround (The Philadelphia Inquirer|
Northwest Philadelphia apartments sell for $8.75M (Philadelphia Business Journal)
Zoning board approves redevelopment of Orinoka Mills in Kensington (Plan Philly) 
Video Interlude: This Drone Footage of Philly Ruin

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He may no longer climb through the window of Gimbels department store, but Santa Claus remains the special guest of honor at the 6ABC/Dunkin' Donuts Thanksgiving Day Parade, the nation's oldest. He will have plenty of other celebrities to keep him company.

Tomorrow morning around 8 a.m., the 95th edition of the oldest Thanksgiving Day parade in the country steps off from 20th Street and John F. Kennedy Boulevard for its annual march up the Ben Franklin Parkway to Eakins Oval and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

While its younger New York sibling enjoys greater national fame, the 6ABC/Dunkin' Donuts Thanksgiving Day Parade garners its share of national star power, thanks in part to the clout of 6ABC's parent, the Walt Disney Company. Disney characters

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A view of the planned Piazza parking garage from Germantown Avenue and Wildey Street

By Gabriel Gottlieb

The Philadelphia City Planning Commission’s Civic Design Review (CDR) Committee ended the CDR process for a new parking garage across the street from The Piazza in Northern Liberties, at its Nov. 25 meeting. The new parking garage would provide parking to residents of The Piazza’s 349 apartments, which surround the open-air plaza across Germantown Avenue from the site of the new garage on Wildey Street. The Piazza’s apartments are owned by Kushner Company, which bought the existing Piazza and this site from developer Bart Blatstein’s Tower Investments, The Piazza’s original developer. Tower still owns the vacant land surrounding this site,

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The City of Philadelphia is currently accepting applications for the Homestead Exemption for the 2015 tax year.

The Homestead Exemption eliminates property taxes on the first $30,000 of your home's value. In order to receive it, the only requirements are that you own the property and use it as your primary residence.

There is one major change to the program this year: Properties with 10-year tax abatements are ineligible for the Homestead Exemption.

If it sounds like your home might qualify for the exemption, the time to apply is now, for the deadline for applying is Monday, Dec. 1.

You can obtain information and application forms at the Office of Property Assessment website's Homestead Exemption page. For faster service, you can apply over

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At least one market news watcher is bullish on the Philly real estate market's near-term prospects, especially in the commercial sector; speaking of commercial, one of the region's leading commercial brokerages offers its predictions for the coming year; the man who made Newbold has plans to recycle a theater at 17th and Snyder into yet another transformative development; and Philly makes the Democrats' short list for 2016:

Reality Check: Philly Real Estate Signals Growing Service Econ (MNI Financial Market News)
Reading tea leaves: CBRE makes commercial real estate forecasts for year (Philadelphia Business Journal) 
Developer buys old theater near 17th and Snyder, plans 'game-changer' (Passyunk Post) 
Philadelphia one of three finalists in running to

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One way in which the age quake represented by the Baby Boomers and the Millennials is working its way through the market is in a labor force that's projected to shrink in the next few years.

The audience that gathered at the Union League on Friday for the ULI Philadelphia "Emerging Trends in Real Estate 2015" forum heard some interesting recommendations for change at City Hall from the panel of local real estate experts, but that wasn't what they had come for.

They had come to hear the latest about where the national and local real estate markets were headed in the year ahead and the trends that would shape their performance.

The big picture came from Mitch Roschelle, the United States national practice leader for PwC's Real Estate Advisory

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By Gabriel Gottlieb

The Zoning Board of Adjustment approved a “special exception” to allow the construction of a five-story apartment building with parking in Spring Garden, at a hearing on Wednesday, Nov. 24. Developer Loonstyn Properties is planning to demolish a small warehouse at 1427 Melon St. to build the project.

Architect Rustin Ohler of Harman Deutsch Architecture delivered the presentation to the ZBA. He explained that the building would have 24 units, all with one bedroom. The units will range in size from 590 to 682 square feet. The ground floor would have eight spaces of parking, with the entrance to the parking on Melon Street. The special exception was to allow parking on the first floor, which Loonstyn’s attorney, Scott Donahue,

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As the city pushes the two losing Center City bidders to Do Something with their would-be casino lots, one of them tells the Business Journal he will figure out something sooner or later; The seller's market of the first half of this year has done a 180 almost overnight; and a co-op grocery store proves to be the spark that lit the revitalization flame in Elkins Park:

Casino also-rans leave big question marks in city's landscape (The Philadelphia Inquirer|
Bart Blatstein reacts to casino decision and talks future of N. Broad Street (Philadelphia Business Journal)
On the House: Back to a buyer's market, with an oversupply of homes (The Philadelphia Inquirer| 
From 'tumbleweeds' to vibrant business district: How a co-op revitalized

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You want to get the best price for your home within a reasonable time frame. To get it, you need to have the right agent by your side. Here's how to tell whether or not you have the right agent.

Drive through any neighborhood or search online for neighborhoods that have homes for sale and you will find the same thing: Within the same area there are homes that are selling while others sit, sometimes for months, without selling.

The Number One variable that determines whether a home will sell or sit is the demand that is created for the property. A real estate agent's primary objective should be to create a lot of demand for the property in order not only to generate an offer but also to sell it for the highest price possible.

In order to create

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