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15 most expensive cities in the Philippines outside Metro Manila

Property Markets / Planning, Zoning, Infrastructure


May 31 2017

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Al Gerard de la Cruz

Demand for luxury residential property in the Philippines is still predicated on centrality, and Manila, the capital, has it in spades. But for all its flashy sights and sounds, Manila is losing its lustre with expatriates and tourists.

Only 68 percent of tourist arrivals passed through the city’s hallowed Ninoy Aquino International Airport in January, a percentage that could plunge further as more source markets mount direct flights to the country’s tourist destinations, TTG Asia reported. “For our mainly European clients, Manila is only a drop-off point for tours,” said Marjorie Aquino, Blue Horizons Travel and Tours senior sales and marketing manager.

Cities outside Metro Manila are set to see even more capital gains as President Rodrigo Duterte reaches out to Asian neighbours China and Japan to fulfill a campaign pledge of improving infrastructure in the provinces. As a result, property seekers find that they can replicate Manila’s more refined diversions in the other islands of the Philippines.

Leading real estate startup has determined the costliest cities in the archipelago beyond metropolitan Manila:

1. Cebu City

Zipmatch affordability score: 6.38

In this historic Philippine port city, the average price of property listings received on ZipMatch since January 2016 hovers at PHP80,718 (USD1,600) per square metre, making it the most expensive market outside Metro Manila. A two-bedroom condominium unit in the city will set you back by PHP12 million. Tourist arrivals are set to increase in the city by 15 percent to 20 percent over the coming 12 months, according to Colliers Philippines. Keen to capture this market is Singapore-based serviced residences operator The Ascott Ltd, opening two projects by 2021. Driven by overseas Filipino workers’ (OFW) remittances, the take-up of residential condominiums during the third quarter of 2016 slightly increased to 1,300 units, compared with 1,030 units in the same period a year earlier, Colliers noted. “More than half of the total take-up [was]from the Mid-Income category, followed by the Economic (20 percent) and the Affordable (16 percent) segments,” Colliers said.

2. Tagaytay

Zipmatch affordability score: 7.20

Tagaytay, a city that enjoys a subtropical highland climate and a longstanding favourite among second home buyers, is the second most expensive property market outside Metro Manila, per Zipmatch data. Prices in the area hover at PHP57,143 per sqm on average, with a two-bedroom unit costing you PHP10.75 million.

3. Davao City

Zipmatch affordability score: 7.93

You can get a two-bedroom unit for PHP3.12 million in this city, the Philippines’ largest in terms of land area. Average property prices in the city fetch PHP52,267 per sqm on average. Investors have zeroed in on the city since its former mayor, Duterte, lurched into the presidency last year.

4. Silang

Zipmatch affordability score: 7.98

The average property in this part of Cavite province will set you back by PHP51,503 per sqm. Cavite is part of a “Next Wave” of provinces, per CBRE Philippines (now Santos Knight Frank), where national and local developers are poised to become increasingly active, signifying diversified wealth from Metro Manila.

5. Mandaue

Zipmatch affordability score: 8.05

The average market value for homes in Mandaue, part of a trifecta of cities that make up Metro Cebu, i.e. Cebu City, Mandaue, and Lapu-Lapu, stands at PHP69,231 per sqm. Condominiums in the affordable segment are seen to rise in Mandaue in the medium term, Colliers noted in a report earlier this year. With next year’s opening of the expanded Mactan-Cebu International Airport, with a capacity of 12.5 million tourists per annum, more foreign airlines are expected to mount direct flights to Metro Cebu.

6. Baguio

Zipmatch affordability score: 8.46

Baguio does not come cheap. Home values in the Philippines’ paramount highland city command PHP55,882 per sqm, per Zipmatch data, with the average two-bedroom unit priced at PHP3.6 million. Many business process outsourcing (BPO) firms are based in Baguio, a top retirement haven and vacation home hub.

7. San Fernando

Zipmatch affordability score: 8.55

Average property prices in San Fernando in Pampanga province have catapulted to PHP30,217 per sqm as more developers continue to home in on the city known for its Christmas lanterns. Century Properties Group has several upmarket residential projects, one endorsed by celebutante Paris Hilton. Megaworld Corporation will build a PHP30-billion, 35.6-hectare township near the city’s capitol.

8. Lapu-Lapu

ZipMatch affordability score: 8.65

Lapu-Lapu is the city to beat in the coming years. More leisure and luxury condominium developments are in the pipeline for the city, including a USD300-million integrated gaming resort with luxury condominium units. Set in the country’s most densely populated island, the city is home to the Mactan-Cebu International Airport, which is undergoing a PHP17.5-billion expansion. For now, the average residential property in the city would fetch PHP41,096 per sqm on average, while an average two-bedroom unit can be had for PHP2.2 million, ZipMatch reported.

9. Angeles City

Zipmatch affordability score: 8.69

Values in the city of Angels are reaching heavenwards to PHP35,600 per sqm. A two-bedroom unit would be around PHP1.25 million in this part of Pampanga province, an area earmarked for future BPO growth, Colliers said in a report last year.

10. Santa Rosa

Zipmatch affordability score: 8.91

For PHP2.2 million, you can own a two-bedroom unit in this city, where average prices hover at PHP50,000 per sqm. The self-styled “Investment Capital” of southern Luzon is one of the Top 10 Next Wave Cities for BPOs, proof of which is in SM Prime’s upcoming BPO tower with a leasable area of approximately 30,000 sqm.

11. Bacoor

Zipmatch affordability score: 9.13

This city will be a major beneficiary of new rapid transit developments, so expect property values to rise soon. Not only will Manila’s LRT-1, a light railway transit line, be extended all the way to Bacoor, but the 19-kilometre LRT-6 will also connect the city with Dasmariñas and other parts of Cavite province. For now, a Bacoor two-bedroom unit on Zipmatch would fetch around PHP1.9 million, with average home values at PHP44,474 per sqm.

12. Talisay

Zipmatch affordability score: 9.13

With an average price PHP2.3 million, a two-bedroom unit in this town on Cebu Island is one of the costliest in the country. The average price of Zipmatch-listed properties in the city is PHP41,763 per sqm. Cebu is part of the central Visayas group of islands, which accounted for 10 percent of the 15.7 million square meters in projects approved for building permits in 2015 — the first time construction in a region has become as “lively” as Metro Manila, according to executives of Leechiu Property Consultants.

13. Cagayan de Oro

Zipmatch affordability score: 9.14

Cagayan de Oro, a strategically located port city in Mindanao Island, offers two-bedroom units at PHP2.4 million; the average price of property here is at PHP40,689 per sqm, according to Zipmatch estimates. National developers are bullish on the city, with names such as Ayala Land and SM Prime transforming the CBD and creating master-planned communities in the suburbs. The city recently welcomed its first SM Premier mall.

14. Cainta

Zipmatch affordability score: 9.15

For those willing to stomach a longer commute to Manila’s major business districts, this city in Rizal province is a value proposition. A two-bedroom unit in this town is a relative steal at PHP2.98 million, while the average property prices hover at PHP36,585 per sqm. The opening of the Metro Manila Expressway/C6 road is widely expected to cut the commute and renew interest in this Metro Manila suburb, envisioned as a “Next 10” city for the BPO industry, according to Pinnacle Real Estate Consulting Services Inc.

15. Antipolo

Along with Cainta and a town called Taytay, Antipolo is part of a highly urbanised area, contiguous with Metro Manila, tentatively called Metro Rizal. Antipolo is rife with residential subdivisions for property seekers willing to endure the longer drive to the CBDs or those just looking for weekend homes. With average home prices at PHP39,007 per sqm, you can own a two-bedroom unit in town for PHP2.6 million. Megaworld Corporation is plowing PHP5 billion into a 640-hectare integrated lifestyle community in this city over the next five to seven years.

SOURCE: Property Report


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