By: Andy Roberts – Philippine Daily Inquirer / October 02, 2021
The current Philippine property market—like many around Southeast Asia—is weaker than it was prepandemic, but seasoned investors are looking at it as a buyer’s market, and are taking advantage of it. International investors are frequently being pushed out of their local markets by skyrocketing property prices, and are increasingly casting an eye over foreign markets in the hope of a good deal. The Philippines is well positioned to take advantage of this due to key economic and social factors.
Some countries are experiencing record-high property prices
As we all know, property prices in most developed countries have skyrocketed since the pandemic started. For local investors in these markets, this situation has forced them to raise their eyes and peer into foreign markets where they can maximize their investments.
As an example, according to Knight Frank Korea, Seoul had the biggest increase in residential property prices—at 22 percent—for any major city in Asia for 2020. According to Julian Joh of PropertyAccess Korea, because of the high property prices in the Metropolitan Seoul Area, the government has been implementing cooling measures to prevent the prices from skyrocketing even further, one of which is slapping higher tax rates for individuals who own more than two properties in South Korea. Joh is foreseeing that Korean investors will definitely consider buying properties overseas now more than ever.
Better payment terms and discounts
When comparing property developers across the Southeast Asia, Philippine developers are actually offering more generous payment terms and discounts compared to some of their competitors in Thailand and Malaysia.
For pre-selling and/or near ready-for-occupancy (RFO) projects, some local developers are able to offer no down-payments with longer terms and discounts because of inevitable delays in construction, and with unit turnover dates being pushed back.
The market has nowhere to go but up
All property developers around Asia are feeling a certain degree of heat from the financial and logistical challenges that COVID-19 has presented. When it comes to the Philippine property market, experts and key players are confident it will bounce back stronger–it’s just a matter of when.
Certain demographic factors in the local market, such as the lower average age (and therefore younger workforce), and less reliance on tourism than other Southeast Asian countries, mean that compared to some of its neighbors, Philippine property can be viewed as a more attractive investment option over the medium- or long-term.