A Few Adventures in Finding and Negotiating Land Purchase

peter's picture

We've been looking at land on and off for a year.  

One of the recent finds we like is several hectares up in the mountains.

When we first looked at the property, the asking price was 1 million peso.  Then a few days later a woman we had met (who we hadn't even told about our visit to the property) texted us saying that the real price was 1.5 million.  

I sent my wife to offer 500,000, and she went, and as it turns out, that woman we'd met had gone *twice* to the owners, claiming to represent us.  Although they refused to lower the "new" price from 1.5 million officially, it was all good information.

Eventually, we heard from another agent (the one who had originally offered the property at 1m) that they were back down to 1.2.  So a week later, we went there and negotiated some more - eventually agreeing on 1,020,000.

Then with the copy of the map in hand, we went again to visit the barangay captain and the land.  Everything ok with that land, we asked him?  Of course.  But then when we were walking around the land (for the third time) with the map, we realized that one part of the land was fenced off and occuppied by a family - from the looks of it, they'd been there for decades.  Yet it was on the map and title as being the same farm.

Eventually we realized that the occupants are squatters - they claim, of course, to have the legal right to a portion of the farm, but have no papers.  We certainly aren't going to pay for the whole lot and only get half of it!  We'd be ok with only buying half, or possibly if the owner and the squatters can figure out a solution, buying the whole thing - but getting the whole thing.

Like everything in the Philippines, we've had to figure out the real story ourselves; and it takes a long time for anything to happen.