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Tips to buying a condo...


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miles-high

I have been a long time condo/apartment dweller/buyer in the US and now bought/remodeled a few in the Philippines (National Capital Region)…


As I see a few posts re buying a condo here, I thought I would offer some minor (all major points are covered in this forum or by searching the Internet) yet important (to me anyway) tips to buying a condo here in the Philippines (probably applicable to Cebu as well ;)). Others with buying experience here are welcome to tip in;)


1) Unlike most condos in the US, hallways and elevator halls are not air conditioned. You rarely find one air conditioned.

 

2) You do not usually find a central air conditioner in a condo here. Therefore, it is important to see if your condo allows (by the developers, by-laws, etc.) installation of the split-type air conditioners. Many condos are designed to take only the “window” type air conditioners. There are pros and cons but the advantage (most important to me) of the split-type air conditioners is their “quietness”.


3) Make sure the size of a bathtub you like to have fits the space, considering the location of the drainage, if not already installed.


4) Find out what equipment/appliances are allowed on the stand-by generator power. I would think the minimum would be one air conditioner, the fridge and a light or two. As one of the survivors of the Northeast Blackout of 2003, I would make sure the minimum comfort level (to you) is maintained in case of emergency.


5) Buy from the developer or its agent. If buying from a third party/owner, I would  make sure a local lawyer is retained and that the tax withheld by you from the payment to the seller.


6) Ensure that the power, drainage, exhaust are well-located if you were to have bathtub, washer/dryer, dish washer, larger fridge, microwave, larger water heater, etc. installed…


One advantage of condo living is it’s probably more secure (my Detroit condo was like a Fort Knox with armed guards but that’s another story, hehe ;)). Check if the parking is guarded as well.


Be safe… :)

 

:D

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Houses tend to find their own level.   The condo explosion is being fuelled by very slick, intensive, high pressure marketing, they are more about selling a dream, a concept, a fantasy than the rea

After the children are grown and out the door, we will be getting rid of the maids and moving to a condo near Ayala Mall. However, we are going to rent. No matter what the price, the flexibility of no

Trust me, I lived in Bangkok for 8 years, the condo market there has been established for much longer than Cebu, it's flooded with property, and loads of empty condos - many for years.   Not a place

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smokey

i agree with you on the saftey issue as its easy to secure a condo in the higher floors what i dont agree with is a condo is most often worth more because of its location to jobs and or the need to NOT have a car this is not so in cebu by a long shot so why are condo units over 100,000p a sq meter and houses 30,000p a sq meter 

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Dolsos

I like the idea of condo living and be central to downtown, but with a small child there's no way a studio would work and when you look at 2-3br condo's it just makes alot more financial sense to move a bit out of town.

 

I like the area's in Liloan-Danao, for the price of a condo there I could get a fairly large lot and build a reasonable house on it and still have saving left over.  I tried to convince my wife on Headshots lot but there's issues with an ex chatmate of mine living in Danao and I guess if I live there she'll magically know where i live and come find us... but thats besides the issue.

 

If we were to buy in a condo I'd make sure it was a brand new buidling, there was something about condo's only lasting 50 years here so not sure how that works out... do you lose your house in 50 years or was that just related to one specific case?   Need to see if I can find that article again.

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throttleplate

 

I like the idea of condo living and be central to downtown, but with a small child there's no way a studio would work and when you look at 2-3br condo's it just makes alot more financial sense to move a bit out of town.

the studios are so tiny,so are the 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom,with a child there is no place to escape.The new condos I looked at being built in Iloilo are ok for me to rent as a single man with gf but if you own a lot of stuff and need space to put boxes and such forget about condo as there is barley room to take off your shoes.
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Dolsos

the studios are so tiny,so are the 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom,with a child there is no place to escape.The new condos I looked at being built in Iloilo are ok for me to rent as a single man with gf but if you own a lot of stuff and need space to put boxes and such forget about condo as there is barley room to take off your shoes.

 

I think the standard studio's are about 22m^2 here, can you imagine sharing that space with a spouse or girlfriend after a fight?  Man.  I don't envy anyone in that situation.  

 

Good tips on buying a Condo Miles, hopefully in a few years the prices crash and we can pick up at least a 50m^2 two bed or larger for cheap if we haven't already built.

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Skywalker

Another very important point - make sure you pick a reputable developer.  

 

I've seen so many 'prestigious' Condo blocks in Bangkok, that after a few short years of no maintenance (and many owners not paying the fee's), deteriorate to valueless tenements.

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stevehann

After the children are grown and out the door, we will be getting rid of the maids and moving to a condo near Ayala Mall. However, we are going to rent. No matter what the price, the flexibility of not owning is worth it and our problems will become the same as renting an apartment. But, I look at housing as a cost, not an investment.

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ThomsonJr

The downside with the condos in Cebu is that most are so expensive for what you actually get (small condos at a high price). If you really want to invest in condos and you want them rented out 12 months a year i'd buy them in Thailand instead of Cebu. Theres direct flights now.

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Skywalker

Trust me, I lived in Bangkok for 8 years, the condo market there has been established for much longer than Cebu, it's flooded with property, and loads of empty condos - many for years.

 

Not a place I would advise anyone to invest.

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Skywalker

Incidentally, many condo's here don't come with a parking space.  

 

If you can, I would always advice buying a dedicated parking space, not that it will necessarily add hugely to the value of the condo, but it will certainly make it easier to sell.

 

Edit:  Take a compass!  It's very important to know where the sun is going to be, with regard to the heat and light issue.  You might get some strange looks, but it is important.  A condo that gets full on sun, in the afternoon, is going to be expensive to keep cool.

Edited by Skywalker
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ThomsonJr

Trust me, I lived in Bangkok for 8 years, the condo market there has been established for much longer than Cebu, it's flooded with property, and loads of empty condos - many for years.

 

Not a place I would advise anyone to invest.

 

 I believe you are right.

 

The property and rental prices seem to be more affordable when it comes to luxury condos in places such as Pattaya and Bangkok the reason why is probably because those cities have been flooded with condos but the real estate market in general seems more attractive there. More demand for luxury condos in general. The main reason for me still is that I don't think I will be able to rent out my 3 Million pesos, 22 square meter condo in Cebu at 25,000 pesos per month if i'd buy one. Look at what you get overthere for the same money..  i'm more certain to rent out my 3 Million pesos condo for 25,000 in central Pattaya then I would be in Cebu I think

Edited by ThomsonJr
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throttleplate

as I was sitting outside giligans last week while visiting Cebu what is the tall building with the red Q sign on the top

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billy

i remember scratching my head in the U S when the prices were going up crazy.  i said this makes no sense..    now i'm doing the same with condos here in cebu. it makes no sense at all. can you imagine $300,000-$365,000 Dollars for a 3 bedroom condo. that is 140 square meters it makes no sense.... by the way they claim 140 sq. meters who really knows if that's true.....  i was thinking of buying a condo in city lights to rent out but i was wondering if it is easy to rent or it would sit empty?

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Thelandofku-an

I like the idea of condo living and be central to downtown, but with a small child there's no way a studio would work and when you look at 2-3br condo's it just makes alot more financial sense to move a bit out of town.

 

I like the area's in Liloan-Danao, for the price of a condo there I could get a fairly large lot and build a reasonable house on it and still have saving left over.  I tried to convince my wife on Headshots lot but there's issues with an ex chatmate of mine living in Danao and I guess if I live there she'll magically know where i live and come find us... but thats besides the issue.

 

If we were to buy in a condo I'd make sure it was a brand new buidling, there was something about condo's only lasting 50 years here so not sure how that works out... do you lose your house in 50 years or was that just related to one specific case?   Need to see if I can find that article again.

Thought:

When your child enters International school or college you can reflect on how wasteful living 

in the country can be on your resources, the two new cars we consumed for our kids education

commute and the running costs would have bought a condo just for school days!

 

Many of our younger friends maintain two homes to reduce ten years commuting!

In fact some  just have a semi-native "rest house" to chill-out at weekends, one does the

"school run" to the condo or townhouse, the other stays behind to do construction!

Ideas abound!

Edited by Thelandofku-an!
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ThomsonJr

The only few condos that are worth buying for investing in Cebu are those big penthouse type of condos, not the tiny ones. They are expensive, but there aren't that many in Cebu, and some people do rent them, if you have some good marketing behind it, it's possible. Those small tiny ones, some people seem to want 25,000 for just 1 room with a mini kitchen and a bathroom... well, those might actually stay vacant for longer, looking at how many there are in the city

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