Determining your home’s real value here in the Philippines proves to be quite a challenge. In the United States, real estate records are available for public consumption. Thus, if you are interested to put your property in the market, you can perform different statistics such as days on market and comparison of neighboring properties. Unfortunately, this is not the case for our country. Records do not have the same data integrity as records in the USA. Records are sometimes declared incorrectly and are often inaccessible.
Market prices of properties in the Philippines are often based on hearsay. Ask the seller how much he/she was able to sell his/her property and the price you’ll have will likely be higher because of the seller’s pride that his/her property was able to make a good lump of money or nabenta nang mahal, in our local language. Meanwhile, ask the buyer of the same property and you’ll arrive at a lower price because of the buyer’s pride that he/she was able to score a bargain i.e., nakamura sa pagbili. This makes it difficult for one to assess his/her property’s real market value.
Other people hire professional appraisers but there are a number of disadvantages of doing so. Hiring an appraiser is an additional cost when selling off your property when sometimes, they just rely on brokers’ assessments or on real estate brokers who specializes in the area. They base their valuations on newspapers and online advertisements and on zonal valuations by the government which are usually inaccurate.
Hiring the professional service of a licensed real estate broker (It is now illegal to hire a non-licensed real estate broker, but that’s another story) who specializes in the area is a vital step in selling your property. After all, that is a fairly small price to pay compared to the millions that you might lose when you enter a market that you are hardly familiar with. There are regrettable consequences when you incorrectly price your property. Sell your property too high and no one will even take a look at it. Sell your property too low and you expose yourself to an investment loss.
In my experience as a real estate broker, I’ve learned that when a property doesn’t sell, there are only two things that should be corrected: first, insufficient marketing and second, incorrect pricing.
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