this is about family and its ups and downs, living, and everything about life from a working mom's perspective.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tips Before Buying A Condominium or Subdivision Unit

It is said that real estate business is a good indicator of the economy.  If real estate investment is high, meaning more people buy real estate, then the economy is booming.  The logic behind this is that people have enough money to sustain their basic needs so they have some extra money to buy their own homes, or increase their investment in real estate. 
photo credit:
In my case, I had a lot of reservations in buying a unit I can call my own.  I didn't want to live in a building and be "cloistered at the top of the tower".  So I did not even try "condo-shopping". I did not want to live in a subdivision that is too "sosyal" for my taste, although I don't even think I can afford  to buy in a "sosyal"  na subdivision.  So I chose to get a unit in a subdivision that is near our family home (original family meaning mams, pams, siblings), where the homeowners association does not charge outrageous fees, where there are still a lot of trees and water is aplenty.  
But before you invest your hard-earned money in any real estate, there is a Latin legal maxim for buyers: caveat emptor, meaning, "buyer beware". A buyer must vigilant and must exercise  everything in his power to check the property he or she is buying before deciding to buy it.  

So please be guided by the following tips that I got from the HLURB:
1. Check if the Project has a Certificate of Registration and License to Sell.
You should ask the broker/agent of the owner/developer if the project is registered and has a License to Sell issued by HLURB:
* This can be verified at the On-line Queries/HLURB website ( for the list of projects covered with Certificate of Registration and License to Sell as well as any encumbrance thereon, e.g. Cease and Desist Order, Suspension of License, etc.;
* Or you may visit or call the nearest HLURB Regional Office for this information.
2. Visit the subdivision/condominium, where the house and lot or condo unit to be purchased is located to know its natural topography, viz: susceptibility to landslide, flooding, erosion, etc.; 

If the project is covered with a License to Sell, you may already enter into a Contract with the owner/developer.  However, there are things which must be checked:

1. The date of completion of the project as indicated in the License to Sell;

2. If the property is mortgaged, it should have a Clearance to Mortgage from the HLURB; 

3. The facilities and amenities represented in the advertisement flyers/ brochures are in accordance with the approved subdivision and condominium plan on file with HLURB.

1. Check if the broker/agent is registered with HLURB/DTI;
2. Verify if the property has not been sold to other buyers with the Register of Deeds;
3. Check into your source of income whether you can afford to pay the equity and the monthly installments;
4. Check if the materials of the house or condo unit conform with the development standards and approved construction specifications submitted to HLURB;
5. Check whether the developer would pay for the water and electric meters, the subdivision perimeter fence, etc.;
6. Check who would eventually operate the subdivision/condominium water system.

1. Don’t sign any blank form of the Contract;
2. Read thoroughly all the contents of the Contract more especially the terms and conditions in fine print;
3. Secure a copy of the Contract and all other documents that you have signed;
4. Make sure that the Contract would be registered by the owner/developer to the Register of Deeds;
5. Pay directly to the owner/developer or the marketing agent authorized by said owner/developer only; and
6. Ask an official receipt on all payments for your file.

Again, never ever sign blank documents!!! Also, please do not rely on the agent/broker's word alone.  It is a given that it is their job to close the sale and they have a tendency to exaggerate.  Check all concerns with the developer and read the contract, no matter how minutae the writing is. Or, consult with a lawyer before you part with your money.  

You've worked hard for your dream home, so as Prof. Alastor "MadEye" Moody of Hogwarts says, "CONSTANT VIGILANCE!!!!"


Patrick Tan said...

These are good tips. Just follow the guide and you would really lessen the hassle of finding a new place to live in.

jaja said...

Thank you!

james abram said...

Thank you! I haven't found a list of helpful tips as detailed as this! This will be useful because I'm planning to buy a condo in Fort Condominium.

Mark Joshua Santos said...

Awesome post you have here. A very helpful one. This is perfect for everyone planning to go at Solstice. Thanks for sharing!

jaja said...

Thank you!