In the Philippines it's not just that condos are comparatively cheaper and relatively more easy to maintain than a single-family home. In recent years, they've become the prime residential real estate investment and the best may be yet to come says Beth Collingz, International Sales Director, PLC International, the lead marketing partners for Pacific Concord Properties Inc's Lancaster Brand of Condo Hotels.
Collingz said according to her research into Philippine property values, since 2000, mid market condos in Metro Manila have increased in value 120 percent, at an annual rate of 17.14 percent compared to new homes rising some 25 percent since 2000 or 3.57 percent a year and resale homes rising 20 percent since 2000 or 2.85 percent a year.
The median price for an existing studio type condo in Metro Manila is around $53,000 for 2007, up some 55 percent from $34,000 in 2005 whilst mid range housing prices in the $90,000 range for 2007 are only up some 8 percent from $84,000 in 2005.
Rising demand for condos, hotels, short and medium term rental accommodation, offices and shopping malls in the Philippines, home to a population of almost 80 million and with a significant number of the more than 10 million returning overseas Filipino ‘Baby Boomers’, is also fueling rents.
Residential rents in Metro Manila rose 26 percent in the three months to March 2007, their highest quarter-on-quarter increase in more than a decade, as more and more IT companies set up shop in the Philippines. Companies like Texas Instruments are investing $1B in expanded operations in the Philippines. High-end rents rose some 13 percent from a year earlier, said Collingz.
Collingz projects that Rents in the region are set to effectively jump up by at least 8.7 percent per annum over the next five years, compared with 3.3 percent in the United States and 3.7 percent in Europe. Yields from 8 percent to as high as 14-16 percent ROI on rental income property contrast with the 4 percent to 5 percent that private equity firms get in the United States and Europe.
These facts gives significant rise to the value of making Condotel investments in the Philippines says Collingz.
People are in general looking to shift fund flows relatively towards Asia, Collingz said. It already has had a profound impact in markets where there's a lot of this money chasing the same assets. In Singapore, the region's second- biggest market after Japan, investments by private real estate funds accounted for seven of the 19 office blocks, worth 6.7 billion dollars, sold since September 2005. REITs bought six. A Goldman Sachs fund paid 690 million dollars for two buildings last November that house the headquarters of DBS Group Holdings. In Hong Kong, property funds of Morgan Stanley and Macquarie Bank paid a total of 7.9 billion Hong Kong dollars, or $1.02 billion, for four office blocks from March to May, according a recent article published by CB Richard Ellis.
As the Singapore, Japan and Hong Kong markets become saturated, the Philippines will be the next real estate market to attract substantial overseas investments. Lower prices and retirees’ spending money are also directing foreign attention to residential condominium hotels in the Philippines, which in turn is driving up more construction.
A lot of this interest is being driven by the relatively cheap market prices here compared to Europe – especially UK housing prices – and the easy payment options available for condominium hotel developments, Collingz said. The buyers gain rental incomes that on today’s purchase prices give a projected ROI of some 8 percent to 14-16 percent depending on the mode of payment for the unit she said.
Metro Manila remains a popular choice with international buyers and institutional investors. Collingz says clients tell her that it makes more sense to buy in a year-round vacation destinations and business centers. Lancaster - The Atrium Condotel developments by Pacific Concord Properties located in Shaw Boulevard, Metro Manila - fits the bill with all it offers to International buyers.
Accessibility is also a factor. Flights from London to Manila, for example, average just 16 hours, add to that the many airline specials and it’s easy to see why this area is becoming an international community. Unlike other offshore rental properties, where the rental market is largely seasonal, in the Philippines there is a strong market for rental properties year round. This gives buyers greater flexibility in choosing when to use and when to rent their property. The strong rental/second home market also has resulted in a proliferation of professional property managers and rental agents, making property ownership and rental easy. Pacific Concord Properties Inc with it’s flagship Lancaster Condo Hotel Developments fit’s the bill
Lancaster Manila Atrium Tower A, Shaw Boulevard, Metro Manila, Philippines is a Full Service Condominium Hotel [Condotel] offering Studio, One, Two and Three Bedroom Suites for sale. To be completed and ready for turnover from December 2010, the Lancaster Suites Manila Atrium Tower II will provide unit owners with premier residential condo units with the option of enrolling their units in the Lancaster Condotel Rental Pool and earn Rental Incomes as Owner Non-Residents when not using their units through Condo Hotel Management.
Combined with rising condo prices, a general shortage of reasonable rental property and substantial increases in short and long-term rental rates, this makes Lancaster Suites Manila, one of the Hottest Investment Opportunities in the Philippines said Collingz.