August 29, 2009

Should We Rent It Out?

Earlier this year, some things happened beyond our control and we thought we had to move out of our current residence. This past few months, things have settled down a bit and we don't need to move anymore. But I don't know for how long. And its not something that is within our control. We don't want to move yet, as we are still saving to add more improvements to the new house. Though if push comes to shove, we have somewhere to go.

Now, the dream house is livable and now with light and water service. Last time we were there, the neighbor who has a store asked us if we are moving anytime soon and if not, would we want to rent out the house? The current rent in the area is P1,500-P2,000. We are currently paying amortization for the house and we are thinking if we should seriously consider renting it out.

Personally, I can't bear the idea of letting other people live in my house. But of course practically, that is a viable option. My husband has no comment as of this writing and I don't want to influence him by telling him how I feel.

Now, what about you guys? What do you think: To rent or not to rent?

August 25, 2009

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie bought $70M Home

Can I just write that one more time? Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie bought $70M home. Wow. And another W-O-W! It is a 17Th century French chateau on a 1,000 acre property. It has 35 rooms and I would expect, everything else at that price.

The above picture is just an example of what a chateau is. And since Brad and Angelina have a big family, they could fit in that house quite snugly. Ha ha, bitter much? They are said to be buying that house to give their kids a chance at a "normal"life. Yeah, like kids who live at $70 million houses could be normal. Ha ha, again insert bitterness here.

Seriously, the couple has done a lot of humanitarian work and deserve to enjoy their money. It looks like their priority is really their family and if it is their dream house, and they have the resources, then why not. Maybe their kids will get a normal life there, since their neighbors will not be awed by the Hollywood parents.

Well, that's the lifestyle of the rich and famous! But we can all dream.

Make sure your house is safe from flood

Were you awake last Saturday morning, around 3am when it rained very hard? My mother in law pounded at our door around that time, telling us that street outside was flooded, and should the rain continue to pour, we would need to evacuate.

The picture above is the gate to our house here in Quezon City. The gate is a few feet away from the street, and we are elevated. So if you are on the street, that flood water would be up to your knee. That was how high the flood water was. My house is the 3rd one inside the compound. During that heavy rain, some water already seeped inside the house and we had to move up some furniture. The bathroom was flooded also and I was dreading that the continuous rain pour would finally make the flood water in the bathroom overflow. Ewww! Good thing, the rain seemed to have lost its anger by that time! Whew! Come daylight, we had to clean the floor with soapy water and dry it with electric fans. The flood water left some mark on the wooden walls. Thankfully, no furniture were damaged. Outside, we placed the plants back to their proper place after rescuing them from the flood. And later during the afternoon, it was sunny alright and no trace of the flood was left except for the sleepy adults who held vigil during the flood. It was the first time in eleven years that the flood reached my house.

Good thing our house in Montalban is free from flooding now. Before, during the typhoon that devastated Quezon, residents told us that flood water almost reached their roofs and they were all so scared with the rush of water during that fateful night. There were live pigs and cars floating around. Many residents sold their houses after that. But the developer reinforced the perimeter walls and there have been no flooding inside the subdivision ever since.

So when you choose a house, make sure that it has no history of flooding. Check the location. Otherwise, you will be in for a lot of headaches!

August 12, 2009

Title, Title Title. What I Didn't Know.

Did you know that when you get a housing loan from Pag-Ibig, you will only have a xerox copy of the title after 2 years of continuous payment? I know, I should have known, but I didn't know! Anyway, according to my developer, they received a notice from Pag-Ibig two years that the title can now be transferred to my name. The initial photocopy of title I received is still under the name of the developer and Pag-Ibig. Now it is being transferred to my name. But I will only get a photocopy and the original will be with Pag-Ibig until after I have completed the payment of the loan. Did you also know that this process takes forever? According to my developer, after they received the notice from Pag-Ibig and I signed some papers ( I cant recall what documents are they) they will return it to Pag-Ibig. Upon release, they will file it with the BIR. I am now in this stage. They filed with the BIR last July 7 and told me to follow-up again after a month. Of course, when I called last week, it is still with the BIR and I should call again in a month. Then after the BIR, they will again return it to Pag-Ibig for the release of the title, then to RD for the change of name in the title. Then I will finally get a photocopy of the title. My developer told me that this whole process may take 6 months to a year. I started this process last March so I guess this may take a year or longer. Again, the long wait is upon me! And I still don't know anything about titles!

The reason why I need that title is because I would like to apply for another loan from Pag-Ibig, this time for home improvement. But as it is, this may took sometime. Or in this case, more time, a lot more time.

How Much is My Home Worth?

I recently read a topic on a forum thread on whether a house is an asset or a liability. Personally, I would answer truthfully that my house is an asset for me. Reading further however, I realized that my opinion is biased because the value of my house as I perceive it is really different from its market value. Therefore, if I intend to sell, and since I have no idea how to get a fair market value of my property, the responsible and smart thing to do would be to hire an appraisal management company like KStreet Appraisal. There are of course other appraisal management companies out there, but I would of course choose KStreet Appraisal because they provide fast and accurate appraisal. They can even provide a free home value estimation if you require an immediate idea of the value of your house.

So if you want to know the value of your home, or the value of a property you intend to buy, it is best to consult the experts especially on appraisal district that is known to provide world-class customer service and very competitive fees.