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5 practical tips for Filipinos looking to buy their first house
The first and most important step to ensure that your house fits your needs and preferences is...
Stock image: Gunnar Riderstrom via Unsplash

5 practical tips for Filipinos looking to buy their first house

Halee Andrea Alcaraz (Philstar.com) - May 3, 2021 - 12:07pm

Everyone has that dream of owning a house one day. While not all of us have the ability to sketch our dream house using AutoCAD or Sketch Up, many tried to draw theirs on some piece of paper when they were kids.

For people now ready to purchase their first home, real estate expert Anthony Leuterio offered tips for finding the best location for a property, during the 2021 Real Estate Conference hosted by The Global Filipino Investors.

Before buying a property, you should determine the kind of buyer you want to be. There are three types of buyers: investors, who buy a property and rent it out; flippers, who buy a property for a certain amount and sell it out after some time for a significantly higher cost; and the end-users, who according to Leuterio are the most common type of buyers. End users are those who buy a property and use it long-term.

Leuterio listed what first-time home buyers should consider:

1. Find a good real estate agent

This is the first and most important step to ensure that your house fits your needs and preferences, Leuterio said.           

Requirements that must be met by a real estate agent before tapping them to help in choosing the best location for a house include:

  • Knowledge of the local real estate market
  • Good track record
  • Excellent customer service
  • Knowledge in rentals in case the buyer decides to rent out the property

Like in any other industry, Leuterio warned of scammers. Many agents are not working to genuinely help a buyer but only to make a sale and get their commission.

2. Find a convenient location for daily commutes

It’s important to have great amenities such as malls, grocery stores, gyms and hospitals.

One of the fundamental things to consider is access to transportation. A property buyer must take note of the time it takes to go to work or school. Leuterio also advised that buyers must see to it that a location is surrounded by business establishments, emphasizing that these are the things that will give more value to one’s property especially when they want to sell or rent it out.

Of course, it’s not smart to buy a house miles away from civilization, unless you’re tired of the chaotic world and that’s what you’re really going for.

3. Check the background of developers

Sometimes real estate agents get scammed, too, by developers, Leuterio said.

Agents get commissions from developers, prompting the former to do their best to sell a property. But there are also times when real estate agents work for untrustworthy developers.

Leuterio suggested another checklist when assessing a developer’s background. This includes their track record, previously completed projects, working phone numbers that are publicly available, and their physical office.

4. Quarantine-friendly home

This is relevant now more than ever, as people continue to navigate through the pandemic. Some real estate developers are now offering quarantine-friendly home designs.

Leuterio’s Filipino Homes was the first to introduce this to the Philippines. His company is offering houses with space for an office, gym equipment, and even an outdoor space to allow for a quality air system.

“This (design) is very important because we’re in the new normal,” Leuterio noted.

5. Check the terms of payments

He stressed that one must ensure that they can afford buying the property that they want.

“You have to prequalify yourself,” Leuterio said, noting that the question that begs to be asked is: Are you ready to buy a property?

It’s also important to remember that buying a property is just the beginning of the investment. Once purchased, one is responsible for maintaining the property so it has to be absolutely clear to the buyer that there will be other payments to be made, such as electrical and water bills, as well as maintenance. Hence, being fully prepared is key.

It won’t make sense if one considers the first four tips from Leuterio if, at the end of the day, they can’t afford to keep up with the terms of payments.

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