The Philippines is a beautiful country home to a vast community of people from all over the continent. Each year it attracts expatriates who are eager to enjoy the cheap lifestyle, the food and the diverse fauna and flora.
As an expat, you can live very comfortably for 1000 $ house, food and leisures included.
All those points have made the Philippines an very interesting destination to settle in for those whom may have the necessary means.
But everything isn’t a pink paradise first let’s check some quick facts:
- The Philippino currency is called: Philippines peso (PHP)
1 $ = 50.73 PHP ( this value may change due to inflation or deflation keep in mind that it will roughly be around this rate).
- Regarding where you are heading, check your nearest embassy or consulate, simple things many people don’t do!
- Check the validity of your stay in the country if you are not a resident ( 30 days somehow keep coming back)
Main concerns are safety. You should exercise a high degree of caution while roaming in the street and cities in the Philippines. Since the end of 2015, there are have been a high degree of kidnapping and attacks targeting foreigners.
Add to that some terrorist cells targeting westerners, thieves and fake cabbies stealing money for tourists. This excess lead the government to declare a martial law on Mindanao in order to fight the violence and restore public safety.
So be on your guard, don’t venture in an unknown neighbourhood unless accompanied by trusted people or local, be careful and you should be ok.
Now our main topic: What if you want to stay there long term or invest, what if you want to buy a house?
Let’s see the prerogatives: In the Philippines, a foreigner can buy a property but he can’t own the land! This should be the end of the story… Ok if you insist, let’s check what options we may have.
- Condo or Condominium: It’s a large complex divided into multiple units and sold. It’s the easiest option and also the cheapest one. The condominium act stipule that you as a foreigner can own as many units but the Philippino owner has to own 60 percent of the property (this part might only suck if you are a businessman specialist in real estate).
- Marry a Native: You can buy a house if you are married to a Filippino but your name won’t be on the property title only the contract. In a case of separation or death of the spouse, you will have a little time to sell the property because again the land is not yours otherwise the house will be transferred to your spouse family or heirs.
- Buy by a company: Good new, corporation can own land! Hurray! But wait, only if a Filipino own 60 percent of the company otherwise it’s come down to the law of land.
When you buy to the Philippines, you should expect many transactions fees which will vary regarding the price you put in: Capital Gains Tax, Documentary Stamp Tax, Transfer Tax, Title Registration Fee. The fees may vary between 0 to 6 %.
Then again The Philippines despite his actual issues is the real beauty and gems can be found for less 50 000$
Phillippines case closed! See you to the next one.