Local Housing Trends

Local Housing Trends: Streetscape improvements planned for Lemont

After a decade in the making, a $1.6 million streetscape plan for the village of Lemont has been presented to township officials.

Spanning three blocks of Pike Street, the project includes additional parallel parking spaces on both sides of the street, sidewalk and crosswalk enhancements and additions, and tree replacements. 

Groundbreaking for the streetscape project — aimed at making the village safer and more accessible to residents and visitors —  is planned for the summer of 2021. These plans are expected to enhance a village already popular for its charm and small-town ambiance. 

Safety has always been a main priority for locals and officials alike, and it shows in the streetscape design. By making the roadway appear narrower, drivers will slow down in the village’s pedestrian-friendly downtown, according to one of the project's designers. This...

Local Housing Trends: Port Matilda & Bald Eagle Valley

The scenic Bald Eagle Valley stretches from Port Matilda to Blanchard in Centre County, and is one of the most affordable -- yet easily accessible -- areas to live locally.

Since the completion of Interstate 99 over a decade ago, the borough of Port Matilda (pop. 606) has become even easier to reach, and offers a quaint village feel with more affordable hosing prices than in the immediate State College area. With conveniences like a pizza shop, post office, tavern, convenience store and community park, you have all the basics – and if there’s something you need, it’s a quick jaunt into town.

The borough itself is located in the Bald Eagle Area School District, but some Port Matilda addresses may be located in the Philipsburg, Tyrone or State College school districts.

Laid out in 1850, it was named...

Local Housing Trends: All About Bellefonte

Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, population 6,281, is situated 10 miles from State College and Penn State University, and is sometimes called “Central Pennsylvania’s Victorian Secret.” This charming borough, also the county seat, was settled in 1795 and is named after the natural spring found there.

The borough has been historically important in Pennsylvania and American history, serving as the hometown of five state governors and two other governors. It was the second town in the country to have its streets lighted with electricity (after New York City), and in its heyday, saw famous visitors like Thomas Edison and Amelia Earhart.

History lovers will fancy the older homes found in the borough, and those looking for more contemporary housing will surely find something as well. From...

Local Housing Trends: Renting vs. Buying

At some point, you’re going to ask yourself: Should I buy instead of rent?

It’s a complex question that includes a variety of factors. Buying is a smart choice for many, but not always the best deal, depending on the market you live in and other factors like how long you plan to live there, the size of the home you plan to purchase, and more.

Consider the following points before you decide to buy:

  • It’s a big investment. You’ll have to put down a substantial amount of money for your down payment (generally three to 20 percent) and closing costs (which can cost up to three percent of the home’s purchase price).
  • Can you get approved? Your debt-to-income ration is important for lenders to see how your debts stack up against your pay. Traditionally, lenders use the 28/36 rule,...