Seeing the need to promote economic development, such is in parts of the Philadelphia area that could use some economic revitalization, the state has created the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority as a source for government-backed capital that aspiring businesspeople can access to fund their businesses.
A previous post on this blog discussed the difference between leasing commercial real estate or buying a property when a Philadelphia resident decides either to start up a new business or re-locate an existing one.
One of the big decisions a Philadelphia entrepreneur has to make early on in business plans is whether to purchase a building for the business or instead rely on a commercial lease to secure a location for a new business venture.
Real estate opportunities in commercial properties can be full of promise; however, it can present some challenges, and sometimes a planned acquisition can be more difficult than expected. There is a lot to know when negotiating a commercial real estate transaction so it helps to be familiar with as much of the process as possible. There are a number of important considerations to take into account during the commercial real estate process.
Commercial real estate projects can be exciting growth opportunities for individuals, businesses and communities. While these can be very lucrative and beneficial, they can also be complex project with many working parts. This often means taking various steps to ensure the process goes as intended.
According to news reports, the last undeveloped parcel in Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia will see the construction of a 47-story tower thanks to the settlement of a dispute between the developer and neighbors who opposed the original concept of a 55-story tower. Details are still pending, but the basic agreement is said to allow completion of commercial real estate development in the Square.
Philadelphia has many old buildings that have outlived their original use and now stand vacant. One of the most well-known of these structures is the Old Germantown YWCA. The building has stood vacant for over a decade, but a recent decision of the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority may restore life to the building as a mixture of residential and commercial real estate.
Every sale of real estate in Pennsylvania is subject to a transfer tax based on the sale price that must be paid when the deed is recorded. Municipalities are allowed to add their own transfer tax to the 1% levy by the state. Philadelphia adds 3% to the state tax and is estimated to charge the highest transfer tax of any major U. S. city. For years, however, buyers and sellers of commercial real estate have used a number of measures to escape the full burden of the tax. Now, the City Council is considering a bill to end these practices.
Most Philadelphians think of zoning as a set of regulations that controls the kind and size of buildings that can be erected on a specified tract of land. Zoning regulations also affect another important aspect of commercial real estate: the use of buildings as sites for large outdoor signs. The digital age has brought with it new techniques for creating and operating outdoor advertising, and the City of Philadelphia is attempting to cope with these advances by creating commercial advertising districts in which the type and size of digital signs is subject to review.
This blog has commented on a number of land use disputes in Philadelphia and its suburbs that involve a proposal to demolish or significantly alter a building with historic significance and replace it with a modern commercial structure. A number of suburban communities have enacted ordinances to preserve historically significant structures, but as demonstrated by a commercial property case arising on the historic Main Line, these ordinances vary greatly in their effect.