Everyone dreams of being able to buy their own home, especially among Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), who are oceans and continents apart from their loved ones so they can improve their quality of life. So it is nothing short of encouraging when OFWs are empowered to purchase homes for their families or as part of their additional investment.
If you are an OFW looking to purchase your first property, it may seem overwhelming to maneuver the logistics of being thousands of miles away. But it doesn’t have to be. With the assistance of trusted real estate companies, available financing options, and the help of your family and friends, purchasing your dream home can be done without a hitch.
Intent of the property
Knowing your intent in purchasing the property is the first step to understanding the requirements. Are you planning to buy a big house that can comfortably fit your entire family? Are you looking to acquire a unit in the mid- to high-rise range near the business district? Or do you plan on eventually renting it out? Recognizing your intentions will also assist in narrowing down other considerations such as the property’s location, available amenities, accessibility and the like. Another factor to consider is whether you prefer to buy during the pre-selling stage or if the unit needs to be ready for occupancy.
Choosing a Developer
One of the integral parts in the entire process of buying a property is finding a developer that can be trusted. With the rise of the real estate industry in the country, it has also seen its fair share of fly-by-night developers who can easily take your hard-earned cash. It is extremely important to choose a developer with an excellent track record in providing quality and timely output. Research the best developers for the type of property you intend to buy.
Appoint a Power of Attorney
To make sure you complete the required documentation, appointing a trusted attorney-in-fact (same as Power of Attorney) is a crucial role in the process as he/she will be representing you in the entire purchase.
Once you have made the decision on which property to purchase, the property agent will facilitate the sending of the Special Power of Attorney (SPA), which you will sign, have notarized and consularized at the nearest Philippine Consulate. The Consulate will then mail the documents to your attorney-in-fact.
Upon receipt of the SPA, your attorney-in-fact can now reserve your chosen property. The signing of reservation forms and payment of fees is usually required during this time.
Complete the Paperwork
Purchasing a property requires a ton of paperwork. Keep a list of the required documentation, and work with your attorney-in-fact for timely submission.
The usual mandatory requirements for purchasing property are listed below, but it may also vary depending on your chosen developer:
- Consularized Special Power of Attorney
- Certificate of employment and compensation
- Proof of income
- Government-issued ID
- Proof of billing
Contingent as well on your financial capacity to pay for the property, you have the option to choose between in-house financing with the developer or applying for a home loan through a bank. This can be facilitated by your attorney-in-fact. Carefully weigh the pros and cons for each, such as payment terms and interest rates, before deciding which option best suits your needs.
Post-dated checks are also usually the preferred mode for the down payment. If you do not have a checking account yet, you can ask your attorney-in-fact to open one, and you can just fund it.
Monitoring of the construction
If you’ve chosen to buy a property during the pre-selling stage, it is also crucial to keep tabs on the construction site and the timelines. Your attorney-in-fact can help in monitoring the status and developments for you. Ask him or her to send you updates and pictures if possible. One of the advantages of purchasing a property from a legitimate and trusted developer is you are almost always sure that there will be no delays in the project.
Inspection and turnover of the property
Perhaps the most exciting part of buying a property is finally getting the keys! During the inspection, make sure your attorney-in-fact or other family members are present to look through and scrutinize the unit. You can give them a list of things to look out for, such as water leakage, holes in the walls or floors, missing or broken tiles, amongst others. It would also help if they can bring with them an experienced inspector to ensure nothing is missed before the turnover. After all, this is your dream home!
Are there any additional steps you can recommend to OFWs looking to buy property? Tell us in the comments below!