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The Philippines’ Real Estate Viewed by Experts, 2019
AREA Press Release No. 510/2019: October 04, 2019

Dr.Sopon Pornchokchai, Ph.D. Dip.FIABCI, MRICS
President, Agency for Real Estate Affairs (AREA)

How did experts in the Philippines view the economy and real estate markets? Which sectors were among the best in 2019? Which were zones in Manila growing.  Which were growth cities in the Philippines and Where would the Filipino buy properties abroad?

During September 5 to 7, 2019, Dr.Sopon Pornchokchai, President, Agency for Real Estate Affairs which was also President, FIABCI Thai was invited by the Real Estate Expo Manila to speak at the Expo.  Dr.Sopon conducted a survey of exhibitors and conference participants at the Expo.  Some 110 were interviewed at this Expo.

Assessment of The Philippines’ Economy and Real Estate Markets    
Item 2019 2020
The Philippines’ Economy 6.5 7.2
The Philippines’ Real Estate 7.5 8.1
Score: 10 = best, 1 = worst.    
Interview of Participants at the Real Estate Expo Manila    
September 6, 2019 by Dr.Sopon Pornchokchai    

For the respondents, The Philippines’ economy in 2019 was viewed at the score of 6.5 out of 10.  This implies that  the performance of the economy was above average.  In 2020, the economy should be getting better.  Therefore, it was viewed at 7.2.

Market Situation

In the case of real estate markets as a whole, it was viewed at 7.5 out of 10.  It implies that the situation was quite fine.  It was somewhat better than the situation of the economy at large.  In 2020, The Philippines’ real estate markets  would be getting a lot better at 8.1.

Best Sectors of Investment, 2019  
Sector %
Commercial 25%
Residential 19%
Industrial 13%
Condominium 9%
Houses & Lots 8%
Land 6%
Office 6%
Affordable Housing 3%
Hotels 2%
Resort Properties 2%
Others 7%
Interview of Participants at the Real Estate Expo Manila  
September 6, 2019 by Dr.Sopon Pornchokchai  


Best Sectors for Investment

Commercial developments were the major sector for investment where it was recognized by some 25% of the opinion.  It could be observed that during the boom period in the Philippines, investors realized the growth of commercial properties for investment.  The second in the priority was residential developments as a whole with 19%.  Similarly, there were also 9% for condominiums, 8% for houses & lots and 3% for affordable housing.

Other interesting sectors include industrial properties (13%), land (6%), offices (6%), hotels (2%), resort properties (2%) and others (7%).  It seemed that there appeared growth in most sectors.  In the boom period of the Philippines, a diversity of properties could be held for investment purposes.

Salient Zones for Investment in Manila

According to this survey, Quezon City which was formerly planned to be the new capital city of the Philippines was the most salient zone of developments in Metro Manila (21%) followed by the BGC Manila (16%).  The third in the priority was Pasig (15%).  Other major areas included Ortigas (6%), Taguig (6%), Manila (4%), Mall of Asia (4%) and the like.

Salient Zones for Investment in Manila  
Zones %
Quezon City 21%
BGC Manila 16%
Pasig 15%
Ortigas 6%
Taguig 6%
Manila 4%
Mall of Asia 4%
Mandaluyong 3%
Alabang 3%
Cavite 3%
Tagaytay 3%
Bulacan 2%
Clark 2%
Cubao 2%
Paranaque 2%
Others 6%
Interview of Participants at the Real Estate Expo Manila  
September 6, 2019 by Dr.Sopon Pornchokchai  


Most Attractive Cities for Investment       

The survey results appeared in the following table:

Most Attractive Cities for Investment  
Cities %
Palawan 31%
Cebu City 23%
Clark City 19%
Davao City 15%
Lipa City 12%
Others 23%
Interview of Participants at the Real Estate Expo Manila  
September 6, 2019 by Dr.Sopon Pornchokchai  

Palawan was the first in the priority at 31% of the opinion of the exhibitors at the Expo followed by Cebu City at 23%, Clark City at 19%.  Other cities included Davao City at 15%, Lipa City at 12%.  Although the Philippines had many big cities in the whole country, only a few cities possessed a high potential for growth.

Countries of Preference to Buy  
Country %
USA 16%
Singapore 13%
Japan 12%
Canada 9%
Australia 7%
Thailand 7%
Korea 7%
Malaysia 4%
New Zealand 3%
Europe 6%
Hong Kong 3%
UAE 2%
UK 2%
Cambodia 1%
China 1%
Italy 1%
Taiwan 1%
Vietnam 1%
Others 2%
Interview of Participants at the Real Estate Expo Manila  
September 6, 2019 by Dr.Sopon Pornchokchai  


Countries of Preference to Buy     

Actually, the Philippines’ investors had a variety of choices for buying property abroad.  However, the largest proportion of them preferred to buy properties in the United States of American as the first in the priority (16%) followed by Singapore (13%)  and Japan (12%).  Then there were Canada (9%) and Australia, Thailand and Korea (each 7%).

However, there were  still a lot of other countries which were of interest for the Philippines’ investors particularly those European countries which were accounted for 6%, UK (2%), Italy (1%) or altogether 9%.  Other countries of interest include Malaysia (4%), New Zealand (3%), Hong Kong (3%) and the like.

In sum, the economy and real estate markets of the Philippines were considered in a boom period where they would be even better in 2020. Commercial, industrial and office properties were among major developments followed by residential properties in terms of residential condominiums, houses and lots and the like.  Major destinations for investing abroad included USA, Singapore, Japan, Canada, Australia, Thailand and Korea.