Philippine Real Estate Rebound: What to expect?

2021 is showing some optimistic news on the slow but imminent recovery of the Philippine economy and its property sector. It is seen to be driven by the gradual rollout of vaccines. With this, it would not be long before the real estate market softly bounces back from the global economic meltdown brought by COVID-19.

Leechiu Property Consultants (LPC) associate director Tam Angel projects that the land value for the years after the pandemic would follow suit to that of what happened during the 2008 financial crisis. 

He pointed out that land values surged for the following years after the said crisis, wherein prices rose by 20% in 2010, 30% in 2011, and 50% in 2012 in core markets such as BGC. It is projected that the real estate market will witness a similar growth, especially in core markets.

On the Office Sector

Based on the Real Estate Outlook 2021 report by Santos Knight Frank (SKF) Senior Director for Occupier Services and Commercial Agency Morgan McGilvray, the office vacancy rate in Metro Manila increased to 9.8% in 2020, while asking lease rates grew by only 1.7%. This may be due to work-from-home arrangements adapted by the companies in accordance with the government community quarantine guidelines.

Although, ever since the gradual reopening of the country’s economy, the office sector is seen to be doing better as some companies are slowly moving their operations back to their offices. However, it will take a long time before operations fully move back to the physical workplace. 

LPC president and CEO David Leechiu projects that the sector will recover much faster than expected due to the sustained Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) expansion within and outside of Metro Manila.

Companies in the West will likely opt to outsource some functions to countries like India and the Philippines in order to cut costs amidst the global economic slowdown. The Philippine outsourcing industry is forecasted to account for 22% of the global outsourcing market in 2022 and will grow by 9% every 5 years.

The recovery and growth of the office sector will likely be led and driven by BPOs in the foreseeable future.

On the Residential Sector

Chief Executive Officer of the Lobien Realty Group Shiela Lobien points out that the residential market opposed expectations in 2020 as intelligent investors saw the opportunity of buying properties during the pandemic, having the demand exceeding the supply.

The pandemic has reshaped the market’s preferences with properties as they now value the proximity of their residence to their office. Lobien foresees an increased demand in condominiums located in central business districts as well as mixed use developments. 

Furthermore, the residential segment is seen to ride the wave of consumer confidence as vaccines are becoming more widely available. LPC said that government borrowings of 10-year and 25-year money at record low rates should lead to a mortgage market, making housing more affordable to the lower and middle class. For this reason, a housing boom may possibly happen for the years to come.

On the Industrial & Logistics Sector

The industrial and logistics sector has gained greatly from this pandemic as it is the most stable asset class from the previous year until present. The demand is mainly driven by e-commerce activities by households with high spending capacity. 

It is expected that the online retail in the country would continue to grow by 2% this year according to SKF Director for Investment and Capital Markets Kash Salvador.

Aside from this, the continuous rise in this sector could be attributed to the repurposing of commercial and retail spaces into storage and warehousing facilities to cater to the increasing demand.

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Sources:

Abad, R. (2021, February 23). Modest rebound seen for real-estate market in PHL: Roderick Abad. Retrieved April 13, 2021, from https://businessmirror.com.ph/2021/02/24/modest-rebound-seen-for-real-estate-market-in-phl/

BrandRoom, I. (2021, March 23). Philippine real estate opportunities in A post-pandemic world: Why intelligent investors should act now. Retrieved April 13, 2021, from https://business.inquirer.net/319896/philippine-real-estate-opportunities-in-a-post-pandemic-world-why-intelligent-investors-should-act-now

Talavera, C. (2021, February 01). Property market showing early signs of rebound. Retrieved April 13, 2021, from https://www.philstar.com/business/2021/02/02/2074595/property-market-showing-early-signs-rebound