Buying a Home in Bryn Mawr

Buying a Home in Bryn Mawr

  • The MacDonald Team
  • 04/2/23

Located in Eastern Pennsylvania, not far from Philadelphia, Bryn Mawr is a census-designated place encompassing three townships. It is one of Philadelphia’s most affluent suburbs and has many large estates and luxury homes. It sits near the center of what is called the Main Line, which is a collection of upscale suburban communities.
It’s also home to Bryn Mawr College, a private women’s liberal arts college with a stellar reputation and part of the elite group known as the Seven Sister Colleges. If you are considering buying a home in Bryn Mawr, there are some things you should know about the community before proceeding with the buying process.

Why Should You Buy a House in Bryn Mawr?

The housing

As a community in the Main Line, Bryn Mawr has its share of huge homes set on sprawling pieces of land. There are also many more modest colonials and capes. Brick, stone, and stucco are the most common building materials, which give the area a classy, old-school feel that many residents love.
Although the architecture trends to older styles, Bryn Mawr's homes are equipped with modern appliances, media rooms, spas, and every other luxury a buyer could want. There is something for everyone in Bryn Mawr.

The feel

Bryn Mawr has a relaxed, suburban feel with quiet tree-lined streets. Residential neighborhoods have little traffic and a friendly hometown vibe with plenty of privacy for homeowners.
There is a great downtown area with shops and restaurants that is easily accessible by car or by using the excellent public transportation system. Bryn Mawr has an excellent library and a weekly farmers market. If you desire some big-city fun, Philadelphia and all it offers is only 30 minutes away. In fact, many Bryn Mawr residents work in Philly and make the daily commute.

Good schools

Parents of school-age children will naturally want to know about education in Bryn Mawr. It is served by three school districts, Lower Merion Township, Haverford Township and Radnor Township, depending on where in town you end up living. Cooperstown Elementary and Ithan Elementary are two schools that have excellent ratings. There are also several excellent private schools for preschoolers and elementary students.
Middle and high schoolers have numerous options. Among these are award winning public and  parochial schools for both Christian families and Hebrew academies for Jewish families. With so many outstanding schools from which to choose, the parents of Bryn Mawr can be assured their children will receive a quality education.

Top three neighborhoods in Bryn Mawr

Before buying a home in Bryn Mawr, you should know about the best neighborhoods.


Radnor is among the best neighborhoods in Bryn Mawr, with gorgeous homes, high property values, and excellent schools. Located near both Bryn Mawr College and Villanova University, it has the feel of a quiet college neighborhood. Interstates 76 and 476 are easily accessed for travel to Philadelphia or elsewhere. Radnor is filled with elegant coffee shops and restaurants and is considered one of the top suburbs in the entire state.

North Side

Bryn Mawr’s North Side is an old and prestigious neighborhood with 21 buildings and houses that are more than a century old. It is the neighborhood that is home to Bryn Mawr College and also has some excellent private schools.
The North Side has a nice mix of older and newer homes, including stone colonials and split levels, as well as many estates.


On the south side of Bryn Mawr in Haverford Township is the charming neighborhood of Cooperstown. This area is entirely residential and has a nice balance of friendly neighbor relations and privacy.
Cooperstown is peaceful and quiet, with more modest homes, primarily two-story stone colonials. It has excellent schools and is serviced by the 100 train for easy access to other areas. Nearby, Haverford College has a public walking trail that is enjoyed by many locals.

Money-saving tips for buying a home in Bryn Mawr

Naturally, when making a major purchase, such as buying a house, you want to save as much money on the costs as you can. There are several tips that can help you do that.

Find the best mortgage rate

Shopping for a mortgage should be just like shopping for anything else. You want to find the best possible rate. Lower interest means lower monthly payments and less paid over the length of the loan.
Freddie Mac conducted a study in 2018 that found buyers who shop for two rate quotes save an average of $1,435 in interest over the mortgage term. Buyers who compared five quotes saved $2,914. Put in the time and effort to find the best possible rate.

Use a bigger down payment to keep monthly payments down

Although it is possible to buy a house with as little as 3.5% down, make the biggest down payment you can. The more you pay upfront, the less you borrow. That means lower payments on the principal and on interest. If you take out a conventional loan and can put down 20%, you won’t be required to have mortgage insurance, which will also save you considerable money.

Increase your credit score

Before buying a house, it’s a good idea to spend some time boosting your credit score. The higher it is, the more loan companies will be willing to offer you a mortgage. The interest rates will also be lower. You will have a wealth of choices that will lead to big savings and lower monthly payments.

Use a commission rebate to save money

Commission rebates are legal in 40 U.S. states, including Pennsylvania. These rebates are money from a Realtor’s commission that is shared with the buyer. They are usually credited to closing costs but sometimes come in the form of cash. Either way, they save you money. Make sure to ask your agent about them.

Ready to move to Bryn Mawr?

There are many good reasons to love living in Bryn Mawr. It’s a quiet, upscale suburb with good schools, great places to shop and eat, and the convenience of Philadelphia close by. Now that you know the things you need to be aware of, find a good real estate agency in the area, such as The MacDonald Team. They have agents with the experience, savvy, and connections to help you find and afford your dream Bryn Mawr home.

Work With Us

Stephanie believes that a home is one of the most important and often the biggest investments you make. Whether you’re buying or selling a home on the Main Line, in Center City, or in Southern New Jersey, you can rely on Stephanie’s successful track record and proven expertise.

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