By Lee C. Chipongian
Residential real estate prices inched up by 0.5 percent year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2018 with townhouses and condominiums still leading market demand, the central bank said.
Based on the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ (BSP) Residential Real Estate Price Index (RREPI), prices increased to 118 from 117.4 same time in 2017, as prices of townhouses rose by 11.4 percent year-on-year, while condominium units were slightly up by 0.6 percent. Prices of single detached housing units dropped by 1.9 percent while duplex units – which was 0.37 percent of total new housing units – also slipped by 3.7 percent.
The RREPI measures the average change in the prices of various types of housing units such as single detached houses, duplexes, townhouses, and condominium units, based on banks’ housing loans data.
The BSP said that residential property prices, on average, grew by 2.9 percent last year compared to 2017.
Residential property prices in the National Capital Region (NCR) went up by 1.6 percent year-on-year with single detached houses and townhouses registering higher prices. Prices of duplexes went down but condominium prices were steady.
Residential real estate located in areas outside of the NCR decreased by 0.8 percent with lower prices of single detached houses pulling area prices down despite the increase in prices of duplexes, townhouses, and condominium units.
In the last quarter of 2018, the central bank reported that 75 percent of homebuyers borrowed from banks to acquire new housing units of which 50.4 percent were for the purchase of condominium units, while 39.8 percent were for single detached units and 9.3 percent for townhouses.
The NCR registered 49.5 percent of total residential real estate loans during the period, while the areas outside of the NCR accounted for the rest with the CALABARZON getting the largest share with 24.2 percent.
RREPI, which is estimated quarterly and provides the BSP a “valuable tool in assessing the real estate and credit market conditions”, was up by 1.3 percent quarter-on-quarter.