Find the Home for you
WHAT AN AFFORDABLE HOUSE AND LOT MEANS FOR EVERY FILIPINO HOUSEHOLD
January 27, 2020
Poverty is a reality. Despite this, we strive for decent homes.
In the Philippine context, however, ‘decent home’ comes with a hefty price tag.
If Filipinos would find an affordable house and lot that puts quality housing as the developer’s priority, then the country will be a much better place.
The housing market in the Philippines
Finance is the biggest hurdle to owning a property in the Philippines.
Even when an average Filipino earns a Php537 per day—the minimum wage—and works every day for 30 years, he would’ve only earned Php5.8 million.
And a three-million worth of a residential property is definitely unrealistic.
The demand is always high, however, to the point of having almost 4 million housing backlog. It’ll even double in 15 years. So supplying the market with 200 units every year won’t suffice.
One problem with relocating informal settlers in the metro is the distance between their new home and their workplace.
Shelters within or near the city are more suitable, if not for the financially-draining prices of the properties.
If not in-city, however, at least, it should be located in peripheral cities and provinces. Or that the relocation sites should have industries ready to absorb them.
That’s why about 22.8 million Filipinos endure living in slums in dire conditions—some without even access to the toilet. It is because it is nearer their place of work and other leisure activities.
However, Filipinos deserve way much better than living in slums.
Speaking of which, it’s high time we put what an affordable house and lot mean for the people.
1) An affordable house and lot includes the basic needs of a family
At the very least, the house should have a bedroom, toilet and bath, living room, dining room, and kitchen.
These are the necessities—the non-negotiables—that every family needs regardless of how small or big it is.
After all, the cost-effectiveness of a big-ticket purchase such as a house lies in the satisfaction of the needs of middle to lower-income families.
The shelter should have ample space to accommodate the needs of each dweller.
2) An affordable house and lot has enough space to move about
The need for space also changes as the family grows, for instance. The same is true when you suddenly need to accommodate a relative to live with you permanently or even for a few months.
While there may be certain components to give up, such as a front yard, backyard, lanai, or garage, the residence must not feel cramped.
3) An affordable house and lot is located near where economic activities are
As much as possible, the development is near where offices are. Or, the industry where the dweller works, without compromising quality time with the family at home.
You need not wait for 3 to 4 hours to go to your destination if you choose a house with proximity to work. And considering traffic and pollution in the metro, living near your workplace is paradise.
With the accessibility of the location, you need not compromise with the difficulties attached to commuting whether you drive a car or take public transport.
Speaking of economies, it’s not always about work. This also pertains to access to basic services.
With this said, the house must be located in an area with reliable infrastructure, including paved and well-maintained roads and away from natural hazards such as flooding and earthquake.
4) An affordable house and lot has complete facilities and amenities
The importance of the community where you will live for the rest of your life must be factored in in the decision.
It would be wise if the community has a hospital, schools, a park, places of worship, and commercial and food establishments. The emergency facilities are also critical, more so when you are living with kids and the elderly.
There should be areas to socialize and hangout. Communities that enrich the lives of the residents should at least have a function hall or multi-purpose court where events can be held also.
Or, any facility that the homeowners would feel more connected with society. These communities are a healthy environment that also doubles as the people’s support system.
Safety, security, and peace and order in the vicinity are also paramount. Walking around the neighborhood should be easy.
Living in a place where crime rates are high, for instance, will never worth the affordability of the property. For all you know, it was sold at a lower price because of this very reason.
So check and assess any security risks, if there are any. Evaluate your tolerance as well.
5) An affordable house and lot adds up to the dwellers’ quality of life
Paying for the monthly amortization or maintaining the house and lot must not affect the quality of life of the owners. It should not eat up a large portion of the household budget.
The monthly payments per se must fit seamlessly into the family’s monthly disposable income. The rule of thumb of which is up to 30% only of the gross monthly income.
Also, despite paying for it, the family should be able to experience and enjoy the simple pleasures in life.
While the emphasis is on the word affordable, please be reminded that buying a house and lot is not always cheap.
But above are the things that make buying a house and lot in the Philippines more affordable.