Property developers shore up land bank

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Aya Lowe

www.rappler.com

25 January 2013

http://www.rappler.com/business/20428-manila-developers-need-to-shore-up-land-bank-cbre

MANILA, Philippines – As demand for real estate assets continues to grow and developments flourish, Manila developers will soon face a dwindling supply of land.

“Some of the developers’ problems are not [about] projects to launch but sites to develop. We will need more land to develop in Metro Manila for these new projects,” said Victor Ascuncion, CBRE Philippines executive director, speaking at a press briefing on Wednesday, January 23.

Rick Santos, CBRE Philippines founder, echoed this sentiment, saying “Some of the large players have large land banks, but for some of the less established players, it’s crucial they enhance their land bank as you have a competitive advantage.”

According to Santos, a lot of developers are looking north of Manila, toward the Clark area, as well as down south, toward Metro Cebu, Metro Davao and Cagayan De Oro.

Santos said there is now a trend of developers building on reclaimed land in Manila and Cebu. “The reclaimed land with the advent of gaming that land is getting picked up. Reclaimed land in Cebu is getting picked up,” he said.

This comes as the Philippine residential real estate industry experiences a “democratization” leading to an increase in demand for affordable units in high-rise residential condominiums.

“The Philippines is experiencing democratization in the housing sector—from a nation of renters to owners—based on low interest rates and financing schemes,” said Santos.

However, infrastructure connecting new developments is also an issue. “A lot of it comes down to infrastructure. There is still a lot of land but it’s just a matter of having the infrastructure to get there,” said Santos.

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