William F. Kerr, Jr.
Real Estate Attorney
William F. Kerr, Jr. has a breadth of experience in Philadelphia and eastern Pennsylvania including Montgomery County, Bucks County, Delaware County, Berks County, and Chester County in real estate law, focusing on land use, land development and zoning.
William F. Kerr, Jr. has a breadth of experience in real estate law in Philadelphia and eastern Pennsylvania including Montgomery County, Bucks County, Berks County, Delaware County and Chester County, focusing on land use, land development and zoning; real estate taxation; real estate sale and leasing transactions; real estate title issues; eminent domain; real estate valuation; and real estate code compliance. He was previously an Associate and a Partner in the Philadelphia office of Blank Rome LLP.
Mr. Kerr has represented developers, property managers and property owners of single and multi-family residential, senior housing, hotel, shopping center, commercial, industrial, golf course, day-care, prison, utility, cell tower and airport properties. He has successfully represented these clients in a variety of real estate matters and transactions. He has assisted clients in obtaining various land development, subdivision, zoning, and related approvals, and in a variety of sale and leasing transactions. Mr. Kerr also has extensive experience in successfully pursuing real estate tax assessment appeals, nonprofit real estate tax exemptions, Act 319 Agricultural Assessments, Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) Agreements, and real estate tax abatements.
Additionally, Mr. Kerr represents numerous Pennsylvania affordable housing developers, owners and managers in various aspects of the affordable housing development process, including properties financed with Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits. He has significant expertise in real estate tax assessment issues for affordable housing properties, and was part of the affordable housing industry group that successfully pursued an amendment to Pennsylvania’s assessment law as it affects affordable housing.
Mr. Kerr has represented property owners in a variety of eminent domain matters, as well as with easement, restrictive covenant, real estate title, green building, and storm water issues. He also has significant experience in the area of real estate valuation.
Mr. Kerr also serves as a Zoning Board Solicitor, and has experience as special zoning and development counsel to a number of southeastern Pennsylvania municipalities.
Get to Know Real Estate Attorney William F. Kerr, Jr.
Affiliations & Honors
- American Bar Association, Member, 2010-present
- Pennsylvania Bar Association, Member, 1992-present
- Philadelphia Bar Association, Member, 2009-present
- Montgomery County Bar Association, Member, 2009-present
- Montgomery County Bar Association, Real Estate Law Committee, Member, 2009-present
- Pennsylvania Housing Alliance Sponsorship Committee, Member, 2013-present
- Pennsylvania Developers Council, Member, 2015-present
Honors & Awards
- Best Lawyers in America, 2018-present
- Main Line Today, Top Attorney, 2018-present
Civic & Community Activities
- Habitat for Humanity of Montgomery and Delaware Counties, Inc., Board of Directors, 2018-present
- Face to Face Germantown Garden Committee, 2017-present
- Corpus Christi Parish, Pastoral Council Member, 2009-present
- Harleysville Baseball, Youth Baseball Coach, 2005-2015
- Harleysville Baseball, Board Member and League Commissioner, 2012-2015
- “Pennsylvania’s Real Estate Tax Structure Presents Ongoing Dilemma for Municipal Officials,” Pennsylvania Law Weekly, May 2012
- “Pennsylvania Municipal Ordinances Target Discrimination in Housing, Commercial Property, Public Accommodation and Employment,” Pennsylvania Law Weekly, November 2011
- “Effect of Financial Crisis on Zoning, Land Use, and Building Entitlements/Permits,” The Legal Intelligencer, January 2010
- “Are Your Pennsylvania Electric Generating Facilities Properly Assessed?” Energy Update, June 2008
“Philadelphia Raises Tax Assessments for 70 Percent of City Properties,” Real Estate Update, August 2007
- “Pennsylvania Tax-Assessment Appeals,” Affordable Housing and Community Development Update, July 2007
- Pennsylvania, 1992
- Temple University James E. Beasley School of Law, J.D., cum laude, 1991
- Rutgers University, M.S. City and Regional Planning, with honors, 1982
- Delaware Valley College, B.S., 1979
Bill Kerr's Legal Insights
PA Commercial Property Owners: Should You Consider Appealing Your Property Tax Assessments During the Coronavirus Pandemic?
May 2020 marks the second month where lost business revenues, unpaid rent and tenant expense reimbursement could have a significant impact on landlords and owners of commercial and residential income producing properties. What can be done? With the near universal loss of business revenue during the coronavirus pandemic, everyone is being affected. Lawmakers have enacted […]
Can You Trust Philadelphia’s (Ten Year Tax Abatement) Process?
Philadelphia’s Ten Year Tax Abatement Program has been in place for almost twenty years. It was instituted to spur new development and re-development, by exempting, for ten years, the value of any improvements to real estate. Over the past few years, many new or recent home buyers in Philadelphia with ten year abatements, have opened […]
Bruce Morgan President, BCM Affordable Housing, Inc.
“I have now worked with Bill Kerr at High Swartz on two affordable housing transactions, one in Philadelphia and one in Chester, PA. In both instances Bill worked on our land use approvals, zoning and tax abatement issues. I have found Bill to be extremely knowledgeable, organized and thorough in both transactions which saved us a lot of time and money. I absolutely plan on using Bill again as new projects arise and would recommend him to others as well.”
“I contacted High Swartz on a recommendation from another law firm to help with zoning planning board in the Cheltenham Township, PA. I needed a law firm with experience in managing the zoning relief for adding a unit to my apartment. Bill Kerr and Stephen Zaffuto from the firm helped me right from advising on my case to filing the case with the planning and zoning boards. Bill also helped me pick an experienced architect who was familiar with the board and the township building codes. They were very professional and kept me abreast with the agenda on every planning meeting. Stephen prepared the case and also represented my case strongly during the hearing which led to the board granting the zoning relief. I am really happy to have chosen the firm for my case. 5 stars for a job well done!”