// posted May 10th, 2012

Condo Manila, Philippines


Because Metro Manila is a major metropolitan area with many occupants and buildings, finding a place to live in can be quite a challenge.  It is a major concern for anyone trying to make a living in the country's premier metropolis.

Metropolitan Manila is one of the largest cities in the world, population and area-wise.  It is comprised of around 16 cities, almost all of them surrounding the old city of Manila facing Manila Bay.  As of 2011, the city has an approximate population of 27.8 million, making it the 11th most populous city in the world.

Metro Manila is the capital of the Philippines, and is also the hub of the country's financial, industrial, and commercial sectors.  Many of the country's foremost and biggest corporations make their headquarters here, and so it is of no surprise that many Filipinos from the countryside come here to make a living.

The following article gives helpful tidbits of information about condominium housing to interested readers, who may be looking for a bit of enlightenment concerning their search for comfortable and affordable housing.  Potential home buyers and even resellers of condominiums will benefit too from the article below, as the market for condo Manila units are rising as more people are moving into the city.

Advantages of Manila Condos

Living in the condominium, or "condo" unit, is one of the best solutions to the Manila resident's housing problem.  Being also a potential solution to alleviating the city's urban space problems, condominiums are living quarters that are compact, functional, accessible and affordable to many residents of the metropolis.  They are most usually installed on large, high-rise condominium buildings located at strategic portions of the city.  Each condo unit is typically made up of a single living space, a kitchen, amenities and one, two, or more bedroom units. 

One of the greatest advantages of living in a condo is that it gives the occupant the opportunity to live near the area of their work, near shopping malls or schools, or anywhere near their places of interest. Another advantage of a condo unit is its manageability and customization.  Condo owners, with a bit of imagination and creativity, can renovate their own units to their liking, redesigning it to suit their own lifestyle and tastes.  The owner can repaint the walls, add new fixtures to their bathrooms and kitchens, install new lighting schemes, add furniture, put new carpets, and any other stuff that you might normally do to your own home.

Living in a condominium Manila offers a lot of benefits to professionals and workers. For one, condo owners can have a place to really call their own.  If they can avail of condo unit near their workplace, that would be an even greater advantage to their lifestyles.  Buyers with large families can definitely take advantage of condo units with large, spacious, and family-friendly environments.  Many condominiums offer 24-hour surveillance and security, as well as guarded parking spaces.

Manila Condominiums

Most of the condo units are housed together in high-rise buildings, yet they are still convenient to access since every one of them has elevators; there is no need in climbing up the stairs.  Adding to the convenience is the fact that there are maintenance and cleanup crews available in every condo building to help the condo owners maintain and clean their living spaces.

Condo owners are handed the responsibility of maintaining their units since they share with the other owners the cleanup and maintenance expenses.  These contributions make sure that everyone benefits from the same services.  These expenses are namely, the maintenance of shared spaces like corridors, lobbies, elevators, and such.  Owners of condo units also are given the opportunity of taking part in community activities.

Additionally, condominium buildings come also equipped with common amenities for the occupants, such as educational centers, parking areas, swimming pools, gymnasiums, fitness centers, and the like.  Condo units can come from a variety of designs and forms.  There are condominiums designed to function like an apartment, while others, such as townhouses, are made to look like hotel rooms (with all the amenities and benefits of these rooms) and are usually built in high-rise condo buildings.

The huge appeal of the condominium is partly found in this quality.  Users can make their own preferences to their living style in their condo unit, maybe employing the help of an in-house interior designer or hire their own designer to help them out.  Many condo vendors usually have their own in-house maintenance crew to help the owners with maintenance matters.

Selling condominiums is generally no different from selling a single, detached house. Buyers are afforded the opportunity to avail of a mortgage plan, a housing loan in-house or through banks, or even on straight cash basis.  Owning a condo unit is economically sound and can be a good investment, for those wanting to make it into a business.

In this matter, resellers can set up condo units for long-term or short-term rent.  The rental fees from the occupants can help in paying for the monthly amortization of each condo unit.  We can quantify the number of benefits that living in a condominium offers:

  • Condo units can be a source of extra income,
  • Condo units are cheaper than single detached housing units,
  • Condominiums are the ideal living spaces for people who continuously go in and out of the country,
  • Many condos have a homeowner's association, where they can contribute monthly dues so that general amenities and benefits of the condominium building as a whole can be addressed and improved,
  • Most condos are located near strategic places of work within the metropolitan area,
  • Most condos are also strategically located not just in terms of work areas, but also within the perimeter of schools, shopping malls, and other places of concern,
  • Condo buildings almost always have amenities such as recreational centers, kiddie playgrounds, entertainment areas, restaurants, swimming pools, fitness centers and the like.

Manila Condos and Developers

Metro Manila is a bustling metropolis, and as such, many people from the provinces converge here to work daily.  As a result, the rate of construction of condominiums in Manila are skyrocketing because of the increased demand of living spaces; as more people have the means to afford them.  There are different condominiums for different markets of people.

Because Metro Manila is the country's industrial and commercial hub, more labor and more workers are pouring into the metropolis in search for employment opportunities.  For many middle and upper class professionals, a condominium is a natural choice for a living space in the city, since they can choose condo units of their own liking and in proximity to their place of work.

On the other side of the spectrum are condo developers.  These developers, many of them are newly-sprouting thanks to the continued rise in demand for condominiums, see a lot of growing potential for condominiums given the rise of the population workforce in Metro Manila.  These, aside from the fact that there are also businessmen who make condominium renting and reselling a business.  These developers make it possible for people with meager incomes to own a condominium unit with Manila that's right for them and their families.

What attracts would-be buyers of condominiums are the affordable and accessible rates of payment offered by the developers themselves.  The usual scheme of the condo developers would be to offer buyers a 20% to 30% down payment on a unit, which can be paid within 2 years, or for other cases, 4 years.  The rest of the total contract price is paid in a regular amortization scheme.  This is the payment approach that is the overwhelming preference of many developers and buyers.

This kind of payment scheme is popular, partly because this has never been offered during earlier times, such as 1990's Metro Manila.  Availing of a condominium was perceived as something for the rich and famous only.  During that time, down payment for a condominium was supposed to be paid within an average of 30 days.  More and more people are buying a condo Manila units because they know that owning a condominium is really less expensive compared to acquiring a single detached housing within the Metropolis.

An example of why a condo unit is cheaper than a traditional house is the fact of shared maintenance expenses.  Most condominium units are housed in a single building wherein the owners of all the occupied condo units band together to contribute monthly payments for the renovation and maintenance of their own individual units and other commonly-shared amenities.  The pooled maintenance payments are used to finance the upgrading and repair of function halls, corridors, elevators, walkways, sports courts, gymnasiums, children's areas, and such other amenities.

People who have the ways and means of owning urban living space flock to condominiums because it offers them convenient, luxurious city living at a lower price.  This is one of the main reasons why the construction of Metro Manila condominiums have spiked over the years.  In fact, condo developers are constantly finding ways to build condominiums that are environment-friendly and with green architecture.  In short, developers are building condominiums that are pleasing to live in, so that they will be even more attractive to buyers.

 Many condo units are suited to the individual needs of each client and owner.  Many of course, have different tastes and preferences with regards to interior design and functionality of their condo units.  You can choose a condo unit that fits your lifestyle.

Examples of these wide-ranging designs are units built for the modern and active lifestyle, while some are more family-friendly and feature a lot of space and kid-friendly features.  Others are more attuned to the ecosystem and environment, featuring "green" designs and technologies.  The latter are for those people wanting to relax from the urban jungle and get away to a nature-themed residential unit.

For those wanting to turn condo ownership into a business, this can be a very good source of secondary income.  Some people like to invest in real estate property, and Manila condo units are their best bet since the demand for them is high.  Condo owners can easily rent out their units to other occupants.  This can be a very good business arrangement, only if the renters are paying the condo on a monthly basis, so that the money can go to the monthly amortization.  This is better if the owner acquires the unit through straight cash, and the rest of the proceeds can go to the owner.

Prices for condo units differ a lot, and these depend on the type, size, the number of bedrooms, furniture, interior designing, fixtures and furnishings, and the number of furniture.  Rental fees range from as low as 8,000 pesos monthly, to as high as 65,000 pesos per month.

Choosing and Owning a Manila Condo

A buyer should study well his/her options when considering for a Manila condo.  While they are practical, comfortable, and especially affordable nowadays when the demand is so high, would-be owners should not rush in buying a unit when they spot a good one.  Acquiring a condo unit in the metropolis is just like getting a single detached house complete with land and such; both are expensive personal investments that need to be thought of very carefully.

Of course, one of the primary considerations when choosing a Condo Manila unit, is it's location in the metropolis.  Ask questions to yourself which pertains to your preferences in the location, such as whether or not you want to be near a school for your kids, a mall for quick shopping, or near your place of work to avoid city commuting.  If you are a traveler, you might consider getting a condo near the airport or a bus terminal.  If you want peace and quiet, maybe a condominium out in the suburbs of the metropolis might do you good.

Another important consideration is the price of the condo unit.  As mentioned before, prices for condominiums vary greatly depending on the features built into.  It takes patience and forbearance in finding and locating that right condo unit for you and your family.  You also have to know if what you're getting is also friendly to your pockets; in short, a bargain.  Do not expect that condominiums with the exact same features but built in different places by different developers will have the same prices.

The standard payment scheme offered by condominium developers is usually a down payment 20% to 30% of the total unit price, and payable within one to two years.  There might be other developers that offer lower down payments though.  Down payments are usually the biggest challenges to would-be owners when buying their condo of choice.  Also be very careful too, if you think you have the means to pay for the down payment and the monthly amortizations.  You have to consider the ongoing costs and expenses of the upkeep of your condo unit, such as maintenance, shared amenity fees, and other fees imposed by the developers.

You might think that the price might be to prohibitive, yet it is good to know that part of the price will go to the maintenance of the condo's shared amenities.  Speaking of these, you might want to check these out when you are searching for the right condo.  Common amenities that should be expected for good priced condos should be sports gyms, children's playground, swimming pools, minibars, and such.  If you are planning to move your family over to a condo, you might want to check out if there are adequate kid's facilities in there.  Again, the maintenance of these facilities will be taken out of the monthly dues. As true for most transactions, cash payments are preferred by the developers.  This can speed up the transaction and of course, the buyer won't have any outstanding debt or down payment.  Furthermore, paying in cash will give the buyer the opportunity to avail of big discounts.

In case the buyer doesn't have enough current cash to make an on-the-spot payment for a Condominium Manila, there are loan and payment schemes from the developer that the buyer can choose, such as in-house financing or bank financing.  One special kind of loan arrangement is the Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF) or loans thru Pag-Ibig.  This is available for those members who have already paid at least 24 months worth of contribution.  To glean more information on this payment scheme, you may contact us.

In Metro Manila's condominium market, there are actually several developers all vying for a bigger share of the market.  If you are one of the buyers, it is always good to choose carefully and not rush in buying one of the most significant investments you can make in your lifetime.

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