If you plan on buying a house for the first time, there are guidelines you must follow: selecting a suitable location, setting a clear budget, choosing the type of house, and securing all the legal transactions.

When you buy a house, you’re not only making a costly purchase but also accomplishing a huge achievement. This is especially true for people in Asian countries like the Philippines, where deeply set cultural norms on family ties usually prevent individuals from moving out of their parents’ home.

It may be considered standard for someone in North America or Europe to leave home after graduating from college and acquiring a job, but definitely not for the majority of Filipinos. If you have reached that point in your life where your level of independence and financial viability is enough for buying a residential property, then kudos to you.

To help you get started, here are several guidelines for first-time home buyers in the Philippines:

Choose an appropriate location

It’s important to select a location that suits your lifestyle needs and demands. For instance, how far will the property be to your workplace? If you are a newly-wed with plans of having children, are there competent schools and healthcare centers within the area? Additionally, you must determine factors like ease of access to roadways and public transportation.

Many first-time home buyers choose to reside in urbanized areas due to key considerations like the rate of employment opportunities and convenient daily travel. However, if you don’t want to add to the congestion in populous cities like Quezon City and Manila, you can opt for other cities such as Taguig, Makati, Cavite or Bataan.

The location directly affects the cost of the property. For example, in a high-end residential village in Makati, the land is priced at an average of PHP 375,000 per square meter in 2018. On the other hand, in a housing village in Pasig, the average land cost per square meter is PHP 160,000.

Assess all essential factors, as well as your financial capacity when choosing a location for your house and lot, whether it’s in the Cavite area or Manila.

Set a budget

As explained, the location can affect the cost of an estate. However, by setting a budget, you can sort out your options effectively. Strictly adhering to budget limitations will also save you from financially crippling troubles in the future.

Analyze the payment terms and rates of the monthly amortization fee and interest. According to ZipMatch, it’s suggested that you prepare 20% of the purchase amount so you can qualify for an 80% loan-to-value ratio loan. Moreover, having an additional 5% of the property’s purchase price will allow you to finance other required fees.

Select the house type

Now, we’re not just talking about the aesthetics here. Although the appearance should also be taken into account, your needs and future are more important. Whether you want a single-detached, duplex, or townhouse, you should evaluate the amount of space your lifestyle needs. For instance, if you have children, you may want more bedrooms. If your job requires you to often take homework, an office of an adequate size may be part of your priorities.

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