Buying a house or condominium unit usually ranks as one of the top goals for most women. It may be our natural nesting instinct, or the fact that most financial advisers include investing in property as a major step in achieving financial independence. We are driven by the desire to give their families the best, and to have a place we can call our own where we can unwind and be completely ourselves.
However, investing in real estate is no simple matter. There are many factors to consider—from choosing a location, to deciding whether to buy an existing house or to build one’s own, to selecting the features a home should have, and to figuring out how to finance the purchase. The sheer number of developments and range of projects can be confusing and overwhelming, and the fact that this will be a major purchase adds a degree of pressure to make the right decision.
To ease the process for prospective buyers, leading property developer Ayala Land has set up a website called www.atayala.com which features an Interactive Spotlight, a collection of mini-series that provide tips, events, promotions, and company updates; the Property Finder and Compare Homes sections, which allow the viewer to evaluate the various Ayala Land projects using various parameters; and a Philippine News & Lifestyle Section, which has regular updates on economic and lifestyle news in the country.
The site is currently highlighting its first mini-series, a useful 4-step guide to buying a new home. These steps are meant to demystify the process and take the stress out of finding your dream home:
1. Find. Decide what kind of property you want to buy. This includes a host of factors, some practical and some ideal: do you want the convenience of a condominium or the breadth of a standalone home? A prestigious address in the heart of the city or a laid back suburban retreat on the outskirts? How much can you afford to spend? Your answers will narrow down your options, and you can use Ayala Land’s Property Finder to make your selections based on project type, price range, and location. Shortlist your projects, taking note of the key features, so you can be more detailed when you proceed to the next step. It might be helpful to add your own list of variables, such as proximity to schools, availability of amenities, and accessibility to malls and service areas, which you can find in the pages for each of the projects.
2. Compare. After building your shortlist, you can compare various developments to see which fits you best in terms of budget, lifestyle, and taste. The click-and-compare interface of the site allows you to compare up to four projects at a time, with a focus on features such as price, location, and amenities. If you’re ready to go tripping, you can print out the sheet and take it with you.
3. Consult. Make a more detailed inspection of your finalists with the help of the company’s various property specialists. A 24/7 toll-free number is available for phone consultations, you can email them questions, or even drop by the site to view the project and learn more about it. In this step, you should be able to ask about the nitty gritty: what payment schemes are available, how to choose the best scheme to suit your finances, what requirements are needed, and what channels you can avail of for financing. The website makes it particularly easy for those abroad to access information, so you can involve other members of your family, such as the breadwinner assigned overseas, to be an important part of the buying process.
4. Reserve. You may be surprised to learn that along with everything else that can be done online, reserving your home is now possible with the click of a button. Once you’ve decided on your future home, you can take it off the market with the site’s Reserve Online feature. The reservation fee will depend on the development you’ve chosen, but you can choose from various payment methods: cash, wire transfer, remittance centers, or credit.