Should I buy a house in the Philippines?


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153 comments

  1. Renting is fine if you don’t live too long! Because the rent always goes up and if you can afford it doubled or tripled in your future years then it’s no problem. Really depends upon your relationship! You can long term lease also.

  2. I left the USA to retire here 4 yrs ago,. Sold my house, car etc , I’m so happy not the own anything no more … I didn’t buy a condo , or land or home …here in Cebu , I’m so very glad I didn’t .. I value my freedom more … And not have any anchors financially ..is best …

  3. I would suggest not even marrying a foreign Filipina or Thai girl. Even if she loves you and would never hurt you, there’s been incidents where the girls family takes you out because they know that the entire family will benefit in some way from your passing. That person may not be given money directly, but the lifestyle of the entire family will go up once you’re gone.

  4. Paul
    If you want to leave Mae something, that’s totally up to you…
    Just remembered, you will be leaving it, one way or another..
    Please don’t buy anything cash, leave a small mortgage that she can handle by herself..
    Too many expats getting murdered over homes payed in full..
    Just protect yourself and be safe.

  5. Met a foreigner in Puerto Princessa that said he built a 10’x10′, one-room/one electrical socket, concrete-block house for him and his gf/wife. Spent <$10k.

  6. Yes, 51/49 Mae and You instead of mortgage insurance you might buy term insurance to pay off the house if you pass..
    With instructions to Baby Mae, the house should stay in her name only in the Will after you pass.
    Thanks for being a good guy and taking care of Baby Mae.
    But I do understand your ownership thoughts.
    What might be a better idea is Term insurance with a Trust instead of a house for Baby Mae.

  7. Lol, if your married anywhere in the world don’t buy a house. “Next time I’m going to find a woman I hate and give her a house, less stressful 😂😂😂”

  8. You may laugh but you do have a gift of expressing yourself.Your also a deap thinker and humourous.I think you should get an agent and get a book deal.Another income source but also I’m sure you’ve led a pretty full life which mirrors the experience of a lot of guys your age.Your a social document,Paul.I ‘d buy it.
    Give it some thought and here’s another idea.To begin with issue it as a web print,pay to download.There are sites which will host it.You also know a guy,the lawyer,who has published a book.Ask him.Get more fame and fortune,Paul.All the best for you and Baby Mae.

  9. I was reading all Filipinas are evil monsters’ comments. Just because U have heard stories about bad Filipinas doesn’t mean they R all bad. If U do not ever trust a woman U will never love one. How in the heck can U love someone U do not trust. Background, I worked for Microsoft Cybersecurity and I have seen them all, scammers both men and women. When all U see is the bad ones it is easy to spot the good ones. Ron

  10. Good Vlog. I plan on building a small house with a Sari-Sari store on Ne’s (GFs) parent’s property in Bohol. That way when I am gone she will have something that she will not have to pay rent on and have a small income. Before anyone waists their keystrokes, I know I am crazy ( it really has nothing to do with building) I get that a lot, but she is the one & means more to me then the almighty dollar does. Ron

  11. If you’ve got the money to piss away on a house in the Philippines but don’t look to ever see that money again. Then by all means go ahead and purchase a house in the Philippines. If you are looking for an investment real estate is not a good investment. It’s at least 10 percent to get in and at least 10 percent to get out. Then you have all the carrying costs in the middle.
    Your typically lucky to get out with your shirt. Most of the time when people brag about all the money they made in real estate, they will not or can’t tell you their costs. Best of luck.

  12. A good solution for some guys would be an expandable foldable house ordered on AliBaba and shipped from China for $10 – 14K USD for everything but the lot. It avoids all the major problems; termites won’t eat it, low maintenance, typhoon and earthquake resistant, move it whenever you want, quiet and energy efficient (solar panels optionnal). See it set up on Tom and Ruth Philippine Adventures channel on YouTube.

  13. If you are married to a fillipino woman then you should take her future after you are gone into consideration I’m married to a fillipino and we live in the states I’m building a home next to her parents home so after I’m gone from this world she has somewhere to return to if she doesnt wanna remain in the states …

  14. I do understand you can own a house but sign contract where it is rented to you for 100 years….Subic Bay….. Craig Goldsberry/ O’Briant

  15. Well to be honest I am doing this but I trust my wife/ fiance…. renting is a joke ….if your not committed then why even bother…. Craig Goldsberry/ O’Briant

  16. Hi Paul. If you plan is stay long term as a single man in the Philippines, why not buy or even rent a condo as your home base and travel; seeing new places, meeting new people, and having new experiences? Thanks for sharing.

  17. Sorry, it’s SO MUCH cheaper to buy a home. No, you can’t own the land if you’re not a citizen, but if you rent everything then you are spending way more money and in the end have nothing to show for it. Yeah there is a danger of a dishonest Filipina screwing you over (and the government won’t be protecting you in that), but at least buy a condo if you don’t have another good option. You can rent the property or sell it when you want to leave (even if you sell it cheap you made far more than you would have renting).

    I know so many here that own homes and it’s a great investment for them. They don’t plan on going anywhere, but even if they did they could get some money back on it for wherever they want to go next. There are ways to protect your assets, and owning a home is a risk in any country….but still better than renting.

  18. I married my sweetheart and we have 3 beautiful children. rickshawphilippines. And we are buying. So babies have a home they can always return to…

  19. You cover some great points Paul. I agree with you. Why would ANY expat own a home in the Philippines since owning is ILLEGAL unless, a Filipino/Filipina has the MAJORITY share of ownership? You can always be kicked out later and the Police will enforce that decision. Condos however are ok. You can own 100%.

  20. Paul you are answering your own question, which is No.
    And having heard your argument , I have to agree with you , in respect of being a Hobo , which you are and a lot of people wish to be ; a rented house gives you this fredom.
    Short or long turm rent
    You can live by the beach for a time then winter in another padt of Phylopens for winter or spring.
    You are not going to be having the problem of Maintenance , if anything shows sign of becoming a problem or false off one simply phones the owner
    Paul is this not living ? I think so

  21. Nice video man. I have to agree as one reason I don’t want to buy a house is feeling anchored or stuck here be it the Philippines or just the city, neighborhood, or whatever. Far to many times I’ve moved into a place and 3 months later it goes to hell because loud new neighbor or farm animals moving in next door because no rules or regulations. I’d end up at a point feeling homicidal likely, haha. Plus even with the option of maybe still leave but renting out that also becomes another annoyance that to me isn’t worth it unless its a business with enough income to be worth it which renting out one house may not be worth in the long run. Girls are always talking about wanting to buy a house and settle down there but I want some level of freedom they just don’t understand.

  22. It’s better to just rent a house. If you are married or you have a g/f and you want to leave her something then have money in the US bank and have a lawyer set up where the money would go to your wife or your g/f if you die. Because I have seen ones that buy a house and she get the house and he get nothing. It’s better to be sure then to lose all the money you have in a house. Same with any Asian country.

  23. Hell no you shouldn’t buy. You don’t know how long you’re going to be in one place. And if there are problems in the home the owner can repair them not you. No way should you buy I’m talking about the Philippines of course.

  24. i have been watching your videos for some time wow i be watching from now on i am thinking of buying a houses i been with my philopena for 12 years i have a very good strong relationship with her . i am thinking of buy through calmaila homes in General Santos city 3 br houses cost me about 3mil peso .You put the houses in your name and the land can be put in my wife’s name As i live in Sydney Australia to me this is the way i will go

    ps my country is too expensive too live in sad but true
    chees mate great video

  25. I can see it now… You get married to a nice young Filipina, buy a home, 1 to 2 years later, she dumps your Ass! My suggestion would be… NO!! Note: I live in America and I’m happily married to a Filipina – 26 years.

  26. Buying land and building a house can be frustrating to say the least. Unless you know the builder personally, you are going to run into problems like cost over runs, shoddy workmanship, issues with neighbors, etc. If you are successful in building the house the other problem I foresee is after you pass away Mae will most likely have to sell the house because she may not have the funds for future upkeep of the property. That is quite common here. You mentioned in another video that Mae is tight with money, which is a good thing, my wife Diana has the same gift. lol! As a suggestion, if Mae has a savings account, why not put money away on a monthly basis in her account for her future. She will need to understand that this money IS NOT for her relative, but for her and cannot be touched. Just a thought!

  27. I met/married my Fili in the US, she was here as a tourist. Mae needs some travel stamps in her passport before the US will let her come here. Although you don’t want to live in the US, you would want her to be able to come with you if you had to. We’ve since bought a home in the ‘Pines for my retirement and her future security. Just my 2 cents. My Fili loves me dearly and separation is not in our future.

  28. Definitely NO…It’s gotta be in the girls name and you basically have zero control…If the relationship were to go sour the wife/gf can have you removed and will then most likely move her Pinoy bf in (or extended family) ASAP…This is a horror story for the foreigner who buys the house and I hear this scenario repeated often by expats or friends of expats…Rent, stay minimalistic as possible with as few ties holding you down as possible ~ freedom is a key to a stress free existence…

    Also, didn’t know about Vietnam changing their immigration policy to 30 days then out…Please think about doing a short dedicated video about that if you don’t mind…I hadn’t heard about the issue until now and while I’m not thinking about going there anytime soon I think a lot of the expat guys would find it very informative…Thanks!

  29. You cannot really buy a home unless you are married so….although their are ways to do it through brokerage companies what is the point really especially considering how cheap rent is here in the Phil’s.

  30. Any American Guy, Buying ANY property, home. House, car, motorbike, farm, pig farm, or business, is a Complete FOOL. FOREIGNERS can Never…….Own anything in the Phillipines. !!!!!!! You are Only a visitor !

  31. Great video as always my friend and pertinent for those of us single guys in a long term relationship. There are many ways to provide for your Filipina that you do have control over. My partner is written into my Will, there is life insurance as well and they do not have the problems associated with them that home ownership does. Just my $.02

  32. Paul, I am surprised you don’t seem to realize foreigners CANNOT, according to Philippine law, buy property here. You could have a long term lease on which a house sits, or will sit. A foreigner can own the house, BUT NOT THE LAND THE HOUSE IS ON!

  33. It’s Illegal for foreign nationals to own a home in the Philippines, even if you’re a resident) so yeah, that is not even an option. You can put it in someone else’s name (girlfriend, boyfriend . wife etc.) or else buy a condo. Both BAD ideas IMHO after coming here for 37 years.

  34. I subscribed just to get a good laugh! “The short answer is no, so all those at work can get back to what you’re supposed to be doing” lol.

  35. Yes ! Not for you but good to think to Buy a house for Baby Mae that’s will be great help for her If let’s say something bad happened to you. I could say it from my own experienced. My late husband work hard and secured about my wellbeing after he was gone.

  36. I’d only buy property if I was the only one in charge. None of this partnership nonsense or on the wife’s name. That’s a disaster waiting to happen. Speaking of that, I have a daughter, she 11 she has dual Canadian/Philippine citizenship. Id be willing to put a property in her name. Has anyone done that or does anyone know any rules about that? It makes the most sense you can’t divorce your kid and she’s gonna get it anyway once I kick the bucket.

  37. Paul I have been following James Tanner and this is his blog and how he built a dream home here in the Philippines. James is married to a filipina for many years in the states and obviously he has substantial funds. Their home Villa Feliz is built in a private community with many rules to protect the landowners (but expensive) Just thought to share as he has many extensive in depth videos………..enjoy!

  38. Buy a house or not, get married or not—the idea of leaving a more secure future for your partner is something everyone should consider. You may well be divorced but your ex has a claim on your estate unless you have a current will which excludes her as a beneficiary. So if you get to that stage where you think that you will spend the rest of your life with someone, at least make a legally binding will—–it can be revoked if something happens
    .

  39. Paul You certainly have some valid points for not buying a house or condo . And as far as a house is concerned.There are many pitfalls and things to consider. My opinion forget the Corporation idea , once again too many pitfalls. Buy a property build a house ? From the little I know about you. Your wonder lust is still too strong. Mae is much younger than you. And her biological clock is ticking louder and louder each year !
    As for living in Viet Nam, I might go there to visit and see the changes from when I was there in 68-69. But as far as living there. NFW it is still a communist country and Americans are only tolerated because of the money they spend there !
    Your Tourist status can be changed by marriage or obtaining a SRRV Visa. Which is what I have. I spent the better part of 5 yrs on a Tourist Visa.

    When I moved here I had never been to the Philippines And I moved a 40″ container . I now live in a pretty good sized house with a pool and a really nice hobby room. I build models !
    Anyway this was another good video .
    Hope to meet you sometime !

  40. This is an easy one: NO!

    Unless youre married with a Filipino and CHILDREN are involved then YES! Heavily consider it! Children REQUIRE stability.

    If single, rent. Move around…. Enjoy!

  41. The biggest earthquake you will run into there is the fiancé. She will have tons of reasons why her relatives need money for health and business. It can go on for years once over that earthquake enjoy yourself.

  42. Your recent place looks nice, I saw a video of Miss Vie! 😊 But! She told me you’re paying 20.000 pp or 400$ a month!!! That’s way too much! You could build a nice house , but it’ll take a few months. If you buy land, with or without a house on it, there is one really important thing!;;; The Location!!! Yes you can lease the house from your philippina girl… for now. Good luck! Regards Rickard

  43. Hi Paul, I share the same point of view as you when it comes to buying a home for your girl. As long as everyone knows its hers and not yours, it should be safe for you to live there while you can. haha You and I are about the same age. One comment mentioned that you had all bases covered. What about health ins? With MedB enrollment coming up for you, what do you plan to do? I can see self-insuring out patient services, but when it comes to catastrophic inpatient coverage, can you take a $25-$50k or more hit? It’s a question of when, not if. What’s your strategy for health insurance? Gio and Reekay do a poor job in covering this topic for 65+ folks wanting to stay in the ph long term. Why dont you try and do a video on it? You are my fav ph blogger. Keep on doing what you doing. Its working better than the rest. Cheers!

  44. Spot on as always Paul
    First of all why buy something if you(I) can not actually own it.
    My Ex Wife was/is from Indonesia which has similar rules to PH. Although I brought her to the UK and she could have worked to buy a house for us she didnt. So I also didnt lol. As they say dont try and fix something that is not broken.You have a enviable life right now.
    Changing is fine when you want to leave behind what is in front of you.
    Best thoughts for you but you already know you Old Dog 👌😃

  45. your a funny man paul. this was a great video. I can relate so much to most of what you are saying when you are talking about your relationship with mae and your age. I am in a similar situation with my gf who is in the phillipines. she has been building a house in there for the last 2 years now and by the time I retire it will be finished (oct 2020) I wanted because of our age difference for her to have something as I know she will outlive me. my question is if I should go to the phil to stay as long as I can what do you do if you need to go back to usa for things? do you have a place you rent or you plan to stay with family? that seems to be my challenge is when I need to return to usa for medical etc.

  46. The law has not changed and that is a foreigner can buy a house but they can not own the land. And with a wife it’s 60/40. Something happens the foreigner has a problem. She has the controlling interest from the start. A condominium there is some benefits. 1. The foreigner can own it 100%. 2. They rent it on Airbnb if they decide to move some place else. But over all renting is better. Come and go as they want or need too. Check out new areas of the country, get tired of one place move to another. They have freedom. There are many terrible stories guys buying house and lot under the 60/40 program. If she is not the right one or he makes a mistake he is in trouble. Too many things can happen. The law is as it is. No matter how a person try to get around it or over it the foreigner can not own land legally. They will not put themselves in a situation like that back in their home country, why do it in another country. It’s easy to find out google it.

  47. Thanks for the great video as always! I will be moving to Philippines early next year. My girlfriend of over 3 years actually said “no” to buying land for now. She feels ashamed that the property would be in her name. She is a province girl and is very Kuirpot with her money. So looks like renting for me…lol!

  48. I was surprised to realise that I’ve already watched nearly all of your videos and now looking forward to listen to your garbling (joking aside). I like the fact that you offer practical points of view and your ideas reassure us (hubby and I) to just rent and live a semi-nomadic retirement and be care-free. Thank you for sharing your ideas and we hope to have a beer with you and Mae when we get to Dumaguete.

  49. I agree with your points. I would only invest in something I’m familiar with. Probably it’s cheaper to buy an apartment in some parts of Florida than in a major city of the Ph like Cebu. And that real estate can grant a monthly profit to provide better life standards. My concern with buying a house as a married man. If you get really old living together with your lovely life in a house that she will inherit, will she take all the possible efforts not to let you go…?

  50. I am considering relocating to the Philippines and have looked into this issue closely. From what I understand, and I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong, as a foreigner you can own a house in the Philippines. Unfortunately, you cannot own the land that the house is on. Condos are a different matter because obviously you don’t own the land anyway but you can own the condo.

  51. Paul, What are you considering with Mae? Are you thinking about that? I will be moving to Cavite by September and my gf wants to get married but I have said we need to live together for 2 years 1st. Then we can talk about it. But like you I am getting up in age, 63 now, 64 by September, And I do not want to leave her in the cold when my time has expired. She doesn’t want tomove to the states and she loves living right where she is. I would need to trust her 200% before I would buy a house. You have topay cash because we are not getting a loan, and it must be in her name. I have heard some expats get the owner to lease the land for 50 years and then you own the house which is legal. All these things are weighing onmy mind because with this gf or a different one, I know the question is coming. Keep the videos coming. Always interesting.

  52. Good video it depends on a number of factors ie how much money does the foreigner have there’s pros and cons to both renting and buying if it’s the foreigners life savings its not a good idea to put all your eggs in one basket any relationship can break down only difference in the west you would get something back even with all the jargon of you can lease the land as we all know a lot of people in the philippines don’t abide by the law I don’t think its a good idea where there is assets and the foreigner is the one standing in the way of the assets.thanks for sharing.

  53. Have a friend in Bohol. Actually family I think? He built a mansion, then the earthquake hit. He cannot go into the mansion at all it is condemned, so he and his wife are living in the servants quarters. Things can go sour quick. I don’t think he had insurance?

  54. Sounds very honorable the house idea after marriage, totally understandable the title of ownership is important Paul. Don’t rush into anything take some time to think about it. In my opinion the positive advantages outweigh the negatives ei….future investment and piece of mind for the wife. Nice video Cheers

  55. Very sensible video. I agree with your opinions for both single and as a married man regarding a house purchase. Your reasoning is exactly that of mine. It applies to anywhere outside the U.S. Keep up the good work.

  56. Paul, you covered all the bases with outstanding logical and insight. You are 100% right on the single vs married approach to look at things. I am in your same situation. I will have been married to a Filipino five years as of May. We are going to start building our home this August so once I finish working overseas (in a little over 2 years) we will have a finished house and be close to my Filipino family. I really love my Filipino family as they are all so kind and accepting to me. I really do feel like I’m one of the family and I know I will continue to receive their love and affection until the end. If I was single, I’d be doing the same thing you are now. Thanks for sharing your insight, it’s great advice.

  57. Ok, I said no, but now that I’ve watched the video I might change to a yes. The important thing is that you are happy and she won’t kill you for the house, OR just send you packing after changing he locks. Yep, being happy with your decision to buy a house.
    Jon

  58. I’ve been saying to my wife for some time now,that we should get out of our rat race and move to the Philippines. We actually own a house and also have property in the Province where she was raised. Unfortunately she likes it here and has no intention of moving back to her homeland. Poor me. Ah…well ,what can you do maybe it’s the sub zero temperature that we live with most of the year or so it seems that keeps her from wanting to go back. I’d love to leave all this behind. The bills, the bull and the freekin weather. I lived in the Philippines for a year plus that was almost 35 years ago. It was a different world then and the Philippines was a funny place. But times have changed. Lucky you.

  59. You have some good points there. Married….Yes! Staying single/but committed….not a must. But leaving something for Mae would be a wonderful thing to do.

  60. More reasons, even if you are married. They could be hard to sell. Like you said, if it’s nice when you move in and things change. I had a neighbor who had a Government position, who after a while didn’t like us, and made life hell, fortunately we were renting and moved. A few foreigners have been killed for there house. Then the legal issues, someone else could say the house is theirs and tie it up in court forever, or the owner never transfer it. A lot of people like to buy houses because kinda cheap, so there are plenty to rent at a good price. Also the way they build houses here it might only last 15 years; the house I am in now you wouldn’t believe how worn out it is at 15 years old. Cabinet hinges are worn out, tiles popping up from the floor, leaking worn out plumbing.
    Great videos, I really like your positive approach. I am happy here, just don’t want to invest more than I can walk (or run😝) away from, like you. 👍🇺🇸🇵🇭

  61. Paul. Thanks for being so transparent. I like how you put up the video the other day about a relationship that didn’t work out. So many videos show only the positives about a situation/place. You keep things real with your audience. I really like the combination of you, Gio, and Reekay. Keep up the good work. I don’t think you always need to ask people to subscribe or like. The best products are bought, not sold. Good job.

  62. Renting gives you total flexibility, you can move on anytime it suits you with minimal costs. If you own something like a condo you have a legal ownership but you’d have to stay for 20 years to get your money back vis a vis rent. Buying a house that you have no legal ownership of is crazy … the corporation approach is foolish and has suspect legality. The answer is NO … so don’t be a fool.

  63. you may have to rethink your plan b Vietnam, they are also in the process of making it harder . to reside in their country. from June or July this you must leave the country every month unless you have a very good job or excuse. also, it seems that all Southeast Asian countries are making it harder to retire, maybe the exception of Malaysia.

  64. Hello Paul! I have to say I think you have all the Bases Covered on how to survive in the Phil’s,, as we get older we realize what is important in Life and do we really need it attitude. If you build a house there and get a divorce or the wife just wants to sell you are entitled to 40% of the sale that includes property. Or you can build a house off the ground and move it on a trailer just keep the receipts showing what you bought to make the build. God Bless and keep you safe!
    May have to change your name to ‘Yoda’ the all knowing!

  65. Hey Paul my wife and I enjoyed the video, so when is the big day or next step in your life, marriage or not. Whatever you do I’m sure you will do the right thing.
    Miles and karl Nakonechy

  66. There’s no point in buying a home if you’re single,you can always rent or lease unless you’re planning to get married there then that’s another story,l would purchase one near the airport like Clark city where you can make a quick getaway just in case some catastrophic events happens there like an earthquake or a super typhoon or the apocalypse.

  67. Y do u need to own there. U can leave your wife all the money. She can buy if she likes to after. You’ve. Gone to the happy hunting ground. Owning there makes no sense. Because it’s so cheap to rent. And the you have no responsibility to the place. Which I agree with. Ie. no insurance no upkeep. Thanks for sharing Paul.

  68. We are looking to buy a house. I’m like you I want to leave her with something so she will be fine when I’m gone since I am older than her and we have no desire to go back to the states.

  69. buy a bad built condo….. pinoys will buy it or make it a bnb….. hope for no earthquakes…. then get a 25 year renewable lease if you buy house… can’t own property I man either

  70. Paul not a house condo! I have two houses there I’m married. Condo maybe. Rent is so cheep don’t wast your money. Do the math and age. Up to you!

  71. You mean, “Should I buy my girlfriend (who might leave me later) and her entire family a free house in the Philippines.” NO F*N WAY! How many big fancy homes are for sale around Valencia by the X GF? The guy does NOT own the home/land. Thank God I didn’t buy my notorious X a “house & lot” like she wanted me to.

  72. I have heard too many horror stories. I’m putting up the cash and I have no say. No Way! Money does funny things to people. I would maybe buy a condo, but I think I would more likely to do what you do Paul. Keep it simple where you can bug out in a hurry with no worries.

  73. Paul, again a great vid. Just to add my two cents: Simply said, as a foreigner it is perfectly legal (provided you do your due diligence on the specifics on whichever particular unit via lawyer) to buy a foreign freehold condo. Setting up a company allows you to “own” land and a house but never forget it is actually against the ‘spirit of the actual law’. Do so at your own risk. Enforcement of the actual laws can happen anytime. Many foreign “land owners” in Thailand have been relieved of their properties because they relied on “gray zone” incorporation schemes. Having said that, if someone is a solid marital relationship, real estate investment in the Phils is a still a great opportunity in both metropolitan as well as urban areas.

  74. I clicked thumbs down because no matter how good your relationship with your pinay is going. You DONT want to give her leverage of putting her name down for ownership on a house you paid for. Eventually, you will have an argument. And eventually, u will regret it.

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