Named the world’s best island of 2012 by popular travel magazine Travel + Leisure, it’s no surprise that Boracay Island property values continue to rise through the years.
Featuring beautiful scenery and a low cost of living, the location is not only desirable to Filipino investors but also foreigners. Whether residential or commercial, the island of Boracay is definitely one of the most beautiful and lucrative investments you can make today.
Singaporean property development company D Prime is just one of many foreign investors that have taken notice of Boracay Island. CNBC reports that the company is planning a 760-unit project on a 2-hectare piece of Boracay land. Illya Heng, D Prime’s CEO, says that there’s great interest in the project shown by investors, based on responses seen in pre-launch events. She’s willing to bet on Boracay properties, especially with the current state of its real estate market.
Can foreigners own property on Boracay Island?
There are certain limitations under Philippine law when it comes to land or property ownership by foreigners. If you’re considering a residential property or business venture on Boracay Island, you must take note of the following:
- Foreign ownership in a single project should not exceed 40 percent.
- If married to a Filipino citizen, the foreigner can buy property, provided the title will be the spouse’s name.
- Foreigners have the option to lease land for up to 50 years; if they decide to extend the lease, they can renew it for another 25 years.
- Foreigners can own property through corporations that are at least 60 percent Filipino-owned. A number of foreigners have partnered with Filipinos to form a corporation, with the former being a 40 percent shareholder as accorded by Philippine law. This is one of the most common methods through which foreigners acquire private and commercial properties.
- Banks can’t finance property purchases on Boracay Island because most of the land is untitled. They are only covered by a tax declaration, which is generally not accepted by banks in mortgage applications. Fortunately, there are other, non-bank, financial institutions that allow mortgage applications through a tax declaration only.
How do you find the ideal Boracay Island property?
1. Chat with a local real estate agent
Agents know which properties are for sale even before they get listed online. Tell them what you’re looking for so expectations are managed at the onset. Be courteous and show them you’re a serious buyer and the agent might just be kind enough to do your property hunting for you and provide updates when something new becomes available.
2. Research property prices and how much they’ve sold for in the past
Property prices are now easily known via an online search. Before taking the plunge or talking to a real estate agent, do your due diligence first so there are no unpleasant surprises.
3. Check out the neighbourhood before making a commitment
Walk around the neighbourhood to get a feel for the place, visiting local establishments at different times of the day. Check out the shops, restaurants, and locals. Ask the locals, vendors, and shop owners for information on the day-to-day to get a better picture of the place.
4. Check area plans and what’s being built around the area
Will that scenic sea view be replaced by a high-rise within a few months? Know what’s being built or planned for the area before making an offer on a property. Boracay Island property is a hot item at the moment, so knowing what’s what in and around the area will avoid surprises and disappointment.
5. Knock on your potential neighbours’ doors
More than getting tip-offs on the property or area, this is a chance to get to know your neighbours. If possible, have a look at their house or property and see if it is well maintained.