Up to 78% of Filipinos in the UAE plan Philippines property buy

New survey finds majority of the respondents plan to buy properties within a price ceiling of around Dhs 167,000



Up to 78 per cent of the Filipinos living in the United Arab Emirates intend to buy property in the Philippines within the next two years, according to a new survey by New Perspective Media.

That figure is much higher compared to NPM’s 2014 survey, which showed that only 43 per cent of the respondents planned to invest in properties within the same period.

The latest survey also showed that the number of Filipinos who plan to invest in a property within a year rose to 46 per cent compared to 22 per cent last year.

The majority of the respondents still opt for the Dhs 167,000 price ceiling, the survey found. However those mulling high-end properties costing above Dhs 417,000 increased to 13 per cent this year from 7 per cent in 2014.

The survey, which polled 1,000 respondents, showed that 60 per cent preferred to buy a house and lot, 30 per cent wanted to invest in a condominium and 10 per cent intended to invest in lots alone.

Increased purchasing power, a surge in consumer confidence and improved financial literacy are prompting more Filipinos in the UAE to look towards the Philippines property market, said NPM, which organises the Philippine Property and Investment Exhibition in Dubai.

“The Philippines’ strong economic performance during recent years continues to push its property market upwards and international industry experts agree that now is the best time to invest in real estate,” said NPM managing director Karen Remo.

“Investing in Philippine property today is ideal for Filipino and international investors as prices are likely to soar substantially in the coming years.”

The International Monetary Fund projects the Philippine economy to grow by 6.5 per cent this year after posting real gross domestic product growth of 6.1 per cent in 2014.

According to JLL and Colliers International, capital city Manila’s residential property recorded the maximum price growth among Asia Pacific cities during the last three months of 2014.

The country is also one of the world’s top 10 fastest growing luxury property markets. According to JLL, prices of luxury properties rose by 9.7 per cent in Manila last year compared to 6.3 per cent in Shanghai and 2.8 per cent in Mumbai.

General manager of Ayala Land International Sales Anna Tatlonghari said: “The income created by overseas Filipinos has allowed millions of people in overseas Filipino families to spend more and live better lives. This consumption has contributed directly to the country’s GDP.

“Remittances are estimated to comprise nearly 10 per cent of the country’s GDP – one of the highest contribution rates in the world.”

According to the World Bank, remittances from overseas Filipino workers reached an estimated $28bn in 2014. The Philippines is the fourth largest recipient of official remittances after China, India, and Mexico.

The UAE alone is currently home to about a million overseas Filipino workers and has the third highest number of OFWs in the world after the United States and Saudi Arabia.