This single-family home was purchased by Giller Realty, LLC, through the NSI First Look program. The property is in a transitional area, so it was an important acquisition in Giller’s neighborhood revitalization plan to preserve affordable rentals. The area has a mix of higher-end development and lower-end properties that are often unkempt or vacant. The buyer is focused on providing a good affordable housing experience for the area’s lower-income residents. Across the street, Giller owns a property that is primarily rented to employees of City Year, a program that deploys skilled AmeriCorps members to serve as mentors in area schools. The University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University are nearby and support the stabilization of the area.
More than $38,000 in renovation went into the property, including replacing all carpeting, refinishing and replacing flooring, replacing older windows, installing a new roof with a 15-year warranty, renovating the kitchen with new appliances, cabinets, and countertops, installing a new hot water heater and HVAC system, adding fresh paint throughout, and installing a new washer & dryer. All electrical outlets were replaced with new tamper-proof/child safe ones. The buyers also had the property properly tested for lead safety. When Giller was working on the home, various people knocked on the door seeking drugs; they learned from neighbors this home was a known drug house in the community and the previous occupants were suspected of selling drugs.
The new tenants are a husband and wife who earn less than 120% of AMI. Due to self-employment and variable income they’ve had a harder time finding a decent home to rent. He drives for Uber and she works as an online ESL teacher. The affordable rent offered by the buyer is about $150 below market rate. This property has a garage which is harder to find in Philadelphia, and gives the Uber driver a place to store his vehicle. The home also has some unusual yard features such as an outdoor oven, and sculptures in the back yard.