Four (4) common problems encountered by buyers of real estate (By Al Galang)

Date created 23.09.2018 10:36:22

Buying real estate properties is never a breeze.  One way or the other, buyers will encounter a problem or two.  Starting from reservation stage up to turnover of the property, buyers may encounter the following common problems:

1. Stringent documentary requirements – especially if the purchase will be financed through bank or PagIBIG loan.  Among the documents that are commonly found problematic are Special Power of Attorney (SPA) particularly for OFWs,  proof of income for self-employed individuals, and proof of legal separation or annulment of marriage for separated couples.  OFWs are required to appoint attorney-in-fact to represent him/her in the real estate purchase transactions.  Many OFWs complain of difficulty obtaining SPA and having it authenticated because their work place is far from the Philippine consulate/embassy in the country where they work, or in case of seamen, they are at sea most of the time.  In the case of self-employed individuals,  most of them could not provide audited financial statements, which are the most important documents being required of them.  Some buyers who are separated from their spouses but not legally, find it difficult to buy real estate property since consent/signature of spouses are required in the purchase documents.  In some instances, buyers encountering these problems could still purchase real estate property through in-house financing.

2. Delays in the construction of houses.  It is common for real estate developers to fail to meet their construction schedules due to various reasons such as weather, contractor problems, etc.  Developers would normally say construction takes 6 to 8 months but many times it becomes 6 plus 8 months to the dismay of the buyers especially those who had plans already set based on the committed construction schedule.  One client of mine had already transferred their children to school near the property they bought anticipating that they were moving in to their new house just in time for the opening of the school but the developer could not finish their house due to problem with their contractor.  Fortunately, the developer was able to provide a service unit for the client.  But how many developers are capable of doing that?

3. Flaws in the construction of the unit. Even big time developers could not maintain consistent quality of their houses because they employ several contractors.  As you know, contractors are not created equal.  Problems like flooring not level, doors not fitted properly, improperly installed tiles are usually encountered when punch listing of the unit. Buyers are therefore advised to inspect carefully their units and sign only the acceptance documents when all the flaws had been mitigated.

4. Transfer of title takes too long.  This often happens when in-house financing is used since there is no pressure from a third party financing institution to immediately transfer the title in the name of the buyer.  Even if the property is already fully paid, the developer sometimes cannot transfer the title to the buyer because the mother title is mortgaged, or the developer still has some deficiencies with BIR and Register of Deeds.

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