On the rise

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Riding the momentum of its stellar performance last year, the country’s property sector is projected to continue to soar despite the forecasted deceleration of real estate in several Asian countries.

The growth is still ascribed by some to the 7.2% growth that the country posted last year, which enabled more Filipinos to afford the purchase of properties.

“Demand for affordable housing will continue to outpace supply. Liquidity in the country remains high. As a result, domestic savings have also gone up,” said PRO­FRIENDS President Jocelyn Guzman in a previous interview with Business World. “Filipino families are now, more than ever, ready to commit to owning a home and have the means to do so,” she said.

Based on a recent survey of official house price statistics for 2013 conducted by research Web site Global Property Guide, the global house price boom con­tinued to accelerate during 2013, led by the US and Asia­ Pacific.

The survey revealed that the Asian housing markets remain upbeat. “The Philippines is the fourth best performer in our global house price survey. The average price of three ­bedroom condo­minium units in Makati CBD surged by 10.56% during 2013, after annual increas­es of 4.85% in 2012 and 2% in 2011, and declines of 0.43% in 2010, 5.87% in 2009 and 1.65% in 2008. Quarter on quarter, house prices rose by 1% in Q4 2013,” the report said.

According to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas: “Demand remains strong, as indicated by soaring real estate loans. In September 2013, the volume of real estate loans rose by 38.5% year on year to P776.65 billion (US$17.43 billion).”

Also bolstering the sector’s rosy outlook is the opening of integrated, mixed­ use centers in areas outside Metro Manila. The construction of these estab­lishments will contribute to the influx of business process outsourcing (BPO) firms and other foreign investors. This will drive already established compa­nies to remain in the country and even expand, according to commercial real estate consultancy CBRE Philippines.

These lifestyle centers, like those in central business districts (CBDs), will house offices, restaurants, parks, and rec­reational and shopping establishments. The report added that vacancy rates in CBDs further went down to below 3%, and BPO revenues will reach $16.5 billion by yearend. These factors will also con­ tribute to the already increasing demand for quality office spaces, particularly those outside of the metropolis.

“We see expansionary growth in Metro Manila’s fringes and provinces such as Clark, Metro Cebu and Mactan,” said Rick Santos, chairman and founder of CBRE Philippines, at the Euromoney Conference held recently in Pasay City. “Developing these areas will provide more job opportunities for people within and in neighboring places.”

Both Clark and Metro Cebu are glob­ally ranked as among the top BPO areas, with the latter belonging to the 10 best outsourcing destinations. Competitive rates in the areas will also drive foreign investors to conduct business there, ac­cording to CBRE’s statement.

Meanwhile, Ms. Guzman said that she is optimistic that the economic condi­ tions would remain favorable to the prop­erty sector. “Even amid the global and re­ gional developments in the past months, the country has proven to be resilient as a result of good economic fundamentals that were instituted over the years,” she said.

By: Don Joseph J. Dejaresco, Business World, March 31, 2014

Energizer Philippines

Dear Rick,

I’d like to thank you and your team – Joey Radovan and Morgan Mcgilvray in particular, for the assistance given to us during our recent Office Relocation process.
They were very well organized and helpful:

– Our site visits were conducted in a very timely manner and my management committee received clear and useful guidance on various aspects related to site selection –from what to look for in terms of building services, location, etc., as well as guidance on the discussion etiquette they should observe in order to safeguard the confidentiality of issues that could be valuable at the time of final selection and negotiation of the site.

– Both assisted us in the selection of the Office Design and Construction supplier; they were present in all the presentations and gave us objective feedback and opinions that helped my team feel more educated and confident about the decisions they were making.

– We also received guidance with various topics that arouse secondary to our office relocation, such as off-site document storage options just to name one example.

– They continued their liaison and support with the landlord and constructors throughout the process of negotiating and signing the lease, as well as during a very tight construction and relocation schedule during which a lot little (important) issues arise that must be solved swiftly in order to keep the deadlines.

The above is by no means a comprehensive list, and I’d like to extend our thanks to your team who supported Joey and Morgan in giving us such excellent service.

We are now pretty much settled in without any business interruption and with our colleagues quite happy about our new office and location; do come to visit us when you get a chance!

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