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The Big Shift: How to Get Children Ready to Move to a New Home

Family packing their thingsAs exciting as it is, moving homes can be a little overwhelming, especially for the children. In fact, some Filipino psychologists believe that relocation can be so jarring for young kids and teens that it can cause anxiety and depression. The key to avoiding this is good preparation. Follow these tips to get your children ready for the big move:

Start the Talk Early

Real estate experts at Lancaster Cavite say that an early discussion about relocation would help the children ease into the idea of moving. Thus, even as you are contemplating about getting a new home, try to keep the kids already in the loop. You have to make them understand as well why you’re planning to do this. Is it to be near your workplace? Is it because of a security issue in your present neighborhood? Keep explanations clear and simple. Anticipate that there are going to be a lot of questions. Most of these questions come from a place of uncertainty: What happens to their friends? Do they have to transfer to a new school? What if they don’t get along with their new neighbors? Be ready for such questions and reassure them that you and your spouse will be there to support them in this transition.

Let them Envision the New Life

Child holding new house keysIf you’ve settled already on a house, allow them to see it weeks prior to the move. Spend an extended time in their would-be room and let them imagine how you’re going to decorate the space. Ask them for paint colors or wallpapers they want. Drive up to nearby parks, playgrounds, schools, and restaurants, and tell them that the people they meet will likely be their future neighbors. If you’re still in the process of finding homes, show them pictures of the properties you’re eyeing. Allow them to come with you to open houses. For your teen children, you may assign tasks to them, like snapping photos of the properties you visit or comparing model prices. You can also encourage them to check out model units online, like the Lancaster Alexandra model house, and ask them which they liked most. Letting them be part of the home-buying process allows them envision this new chapter in their lives.

Plan a Fun Goodbye (see-you-soon) Ceremony

This will help them further accept the reality of the move. It doesn’t have to be a sad going-away event. Organize a pajama party or a nice, simple backyard dinner with their friends and classmates. You may want to encourage your children to leave some valuable items with their peers. It can be as simple as a handkerchief or a stuffed toy that would serve as a symbol of their friendship. Or you could also give a speech, encouraging the children that their relationship doesn’t have to be severed because of distance. They could still see each other on social networking sites or visit every now and then. Reassure the kids that there really is no goodbye here, but just a see-you-soon.

Again, moving can be a little too stressful for kids. Make the relocation easier for them by following these tips.

The Search for Your Future Senior-Friendly Residence

smiling elderly man

Now that you are nearing your senior years, you should probably already start looking into your residential options. Preferably, your choices should be able to offer features you could benefit from and can cater to your wishes while making sure that you’re comfortable during your advanced years.

Just how do you know which features you should prioritize over others, though? Sometimes, even after retirement, you still can’t have it all. So, your best recourse is just make the best out of the situation. Luckily, Rockwell Corporate cites some of the factors you need to look out for during your search.

Proximity to Medical Facilities

Since you will eventually require elderly health services, you need to find a place that’s in close proximity to clinics, hospitals and other medical facilities. In fact, this feature should be on the top of your list, especially if you are living alone or are living far from family or relatives.

Also, it would help if your new place also has amenities that can be beneficial to your fitness wellbeing, such as a gym, walking areas with greenery and personnel that can look after your safety. These features are typically offered by a number of Metro Manila condos that are up for sale.

Travel Options

It’s true you would want a bit of privacy and solitude in your old age, but you wouldn’t want to be in a place where traveling to and fro is difficult, even if you have your own vehicle. Besides, your family might find it problematic to schedule a visit because of your inaccessible location.

Worse, you might even put off your doctor’s appointments because of your new home’s distance. With that said, you might also want to consider a property that offers private transit options.

It might be tempting to live in a remote area, far from civilization — if you’re into that sort of lifestyle — but it wouldn’t be ideal given your special needs as a senior.

Recreational Areas

Senior couple having a bike ride

Life can get dull if you’re retired. After all, you are no longer following a daily routine, or trying to achieve “adult milestones”. You have lots of free time on your hands. So, take note of the entertainment and recreational spots near the residence that you’re eyeing.

Places such as parks, restaurants, shopping centers, and malls should be easily accessible. Find hobbies you never tried when you were younger. You might even end up surprising yourself. It’s never too late.

After all, being up and about can do wonders for both your physical and mental health whatever your age is. Regular exercise will prevent diseases and mental health issues associated with old age, lengthen your life and improve its quality as well.

Once you’ve made your choice, acquire the property so you can rent it out before you finally retire. Just remember, you’d want to live out the rest of your days in comfort and happiness so choose well. Therefore, it would be best to visit your finalists personally before you make your decision.

Moving into the Ideal Neighborhood

Suburban neighborhood with cars parked in frontThese days, when it comes to moving to a new home, there are a variety of options to consider. For instance, it is essential to check on your new neighbors to establish camaraderie with them. Aside from this, children moving to a new neighborhood need help in adjusting to their new school. People are encouraged to be “tourists” in the new neighborhood. This means that you should take time to walk around and familiarize yourself with each part of the community you’ve moved into. Here is a closer look at what you need to:

Check if the Community Has Trustworthy Schools

Real estate developers like GoBE Real Estate usually have clients looking for schools that can accommodate their children. It is vital to be determined. You should not risk trusting the wrong kind of school. A school that can guide your child properly should have proficient teachers, modern teaching facilities, adequate security, and more.

It Is a Plus if There Are Parks in the Vicinity

For families who love going on picnics in parks or walking their pets there, the said park should then be a priority when looking for a new home. Aside from offering views of greenery and spaces for relaxation, parks might also provide venues for recreation and sports. For instance, it will be a plus if the park has a skating rink for skateboarders, a well-maintained path for joggers, and more.

There Should Be Local Businesses in the Area

Women buying at a local marketFor parents or breadwinners looking to find work after moving to the neighborhood, it is a must to have local businesses operating in the area. This should provide opportunities for both professionals looking for employment or entrepreneurs planning to open a shop. Having multiple companies functioning in the area can be a good sign that the community is growing.

Medical Services Should Be Available

Another factor to consider is medical services, especially for families with children or seniors. This is crucial, as the Center for American Progress reports how community health centers help keep businesses running. Having medical centers in these communities provides a place for the sick to get well again, thereby making them fit for work sooner and putting sick leaves to a minimum.

Determine the Supermarket Locations

There should also be grocery stores in the vicinity. After all, these shops provide daily needs like food, cleaning products, and hygiene supplies to every household. It is not enough to have grocery shops; the said establishments should be qualified to sell clean and fresh produce, meat, and beverages. It is also a plus if the grocery has eco-friendly efforts, such as placing bans on plastic bags and using paper ones instead.

To sum things up, there are things that you can do to ensure that your neighborhood is the ideal one. The area should have trustworthy schools for your children, medical services for emergencies, parks that can accommodate family activities, and more. By determining this, you will be confident that you are investing in the right home.

4 Facts About Investing in a Condominium for the First time

Condominium photo shot from the bottomAs Metro Manila — and the Philippines as a whole — continues to do well economically, the demand for jobs continues to increase. In fact, it is more evident in particular cities because even people who live in the province (nearby or not) are moving in, with the hopes to look for a higher paying job in the capital.

That demand, along with the fact that condominiums have started to sprout like mushrooms in different parts of the metro, has made it a lot easier to find and invest in real estate. All you need is to get yourself a unit, advertise it to people who might be interested (families, young professionals, or bachelors/bachelorettes), rent it for a specific time (in a six-month or one year contract), and earn money.

If you want some passive income, it could be a wise move to invest in a condo. However, despite the variety of choices, it pays to be prepared when you make your first investment. Before signing a deal and securing that condo, Quezon City real estate experts noted that it is best to make sure that you have these fully understood and prepared:

1. Purpose

People buy a house and lot for different reasons, and buying a condo is no different. Knowing your purpose can help you decide which type of condo to buy (studio, 1BR, or 2BR) and where to buy (near your home so you can tend to your future tenant’s needs immediately or within a popular neighborhood).

Having a purpose can help you better understand the direction of your investment. In this case, it is you, wanting some passive income. The question is, “For what?”

2. Budget and Financing

Set aside a reasonable budget for your purchase. It is important to stick to it and know in what ways you can finance them (i.e. loans). Having the numbers straightened out before you actually sign the deal can help you achieve a more stable financial standing. You would not want to pursue that purchase if you know that you will just be buried in debt. Besides, if you are getting a mortgage for it, your lender would know if you are eligible enough to pay back the money you are planning to borrow every month.

Construction worker surveying the site

3. Developer

They sprout like mushrooms. But, like mushrooms, there are good condos and bad ones. Make sure you are working with reputable developers. In the Philippines, there are many of them like Rockwell Land Corporation, which you might need to do a little researching first to be sure that buying from them would be worth it.

After all, the last thing you would want is an unfinished building (with your unit among them) due to internal problems or lack of funding in the part of the developer.

4. Insurance

Accidents can happen anytime to anyone, even in the most secured condominiums. Therefore, it is important to invest in one that has insurance for theft, fire, and natural disasters. It is your right as an owner to be covered.

Once you fully understand the reality of owning a condo and accept the responsibility of having one, then it is time for you to finally make that purchase.

3 Reasons Your Business Should Have a Physical Office

modern office

Renting an office these days has become an expense that everyone wants to avoid. In fact, Rockwell Corporate notes that many people are shifting to the modern way of officing — from meeting clients in restaurants or hotel lobbies to doing much of their business activities from the comfort of their homes.

Still, nothing beats having a physical office where you and the people you work with can share a space and get things done together. There’s a reason it’s been the standard working condition for decades on end. Having a physical office space comes with a plethora of benefits. Below, see some of them.

Promotes Accountability

Besides the dreams you and your team share in the name of your business, some of these people do have personal hobbies, talents, and goals to pursue. What makes them happy is to see that they accomplish their desires at the end of the day.

The more they focus on their interests, the more your business gets affected. If they all come to perform their work from a physical office, every one of your employees has no choice but to focus their skills to your business, or at least for the time they are physically there.

Whatever they do outside the office is theirs, but while you provide them with resources to work with you, you expect them to work with you.

Encourages Team Building

employees working together in the office

By considering an office space for rent in the Philippines, it becomes easier for you to integrate different departments into one team that focuses on common organizational goals. Although having remotes teams has its benefits, the ease of having your teammates in one place will get you closer to your business goals faster.

The fact that your team works for a single business unit simply means their skills, experience, and talents are targeted on your enterprise. However, if everyone works from home and only meet through an online platform, the bond and rapport cannot be strong enough to bring them together.

Establishes Brand Awareness

Most of the clients these days want to be sure that they are dealing with a legitimate organization. Part of the things they will ask is the location of your business. Without an office space, you won’t have a spot to identify your business with.

A physical office doesn’t just win clients’ trust, but also creates brand awareness. When people have a place to associate your business with, your brand becomes even more real in their minds. You create a tangible image of you in your customers’ eyes.

Creating business success and growth isn’t limited to finding ways to cut overhead costs and growing profits. It involves marketing efforts and working on a positive brand image. The biggest, most successful companies invest a lot of resources into this because they know its importance.

Building a good and lasting reputation for your business is part of the long-term goals that you also need to have. Unfortunately, you cannot achieve good brand reputation with an enterprise that does its activities out of space. You need an office where you can identify yourself from.

People Person: 3 Easy Ways to Get to Know Your Condo Neighbors

high-rise condo unit

One of the most common misconceptions about condo living is you will never find friends, as everyone has their own little worlds boxed in their cold and stiff units. The truth is, however, condo communities today are some of the most vibrant neighborhoods — and that you can very well make friends in these settings, even without trying so hard.

Here are some of the easiest ways to get to know your condo neighbors. Who knows, your personalities might jive and you may find a friend who is interested in the same things.

Help someone

The “Bayanihan” spirit in Filipinos isn’t lost just because there are no bahay kubo’s to lift. There are other ways to show that wonderful spirit as long as you care for the people around you. Even in condo settings, you can channel such a noble trait. The simple act of holding the elevator for someone, especially those who have children with them or those who are carrying heavy items like groceries, can help you connect with a neighbor. Even if you just exchanged a few words — like “Going up.” or “Thank you.” — at least you did not ignore their presence. In fact, that short conversation made you look at them instead of being busy with your smartphone.

If cooking or baking is your hobby, you can be that Good Samaritan who shares food with everyone — except that in this setting, you have more to feed. Of course, your priority would be those who live on the same floor. Let them try your adobo or sinigang or the cupcakes you baked. Moreover, don’t forget to smile. Don’t underestimate the power of a smile, as it might just be the help that someone needs after a long day.

Go to association meetings

It’s your right and responsibility to know what’s happening in your community. Aside from being informed, go to association meetings to meet your neighbors. Participate actively in the discussions and express respect for differing opinions. When people see that you’re genuinely concerned about certain matters, they’d engage in conversations with you even after the meeting. This could be an opportunity to invite them to dinner at your place or ask them about what they do for a living. Seize the social opportunities in gatherings.

Walk your dog

Happy young woman walking with her beagle dog

Most property developments today have sprawling green outdoor spaces where you can take your dog for a walk. Such areas will help you meet other pet owners. As you have a common interest, it will be more natural for you to strike a conversation. Plus, dogs naturally gravitate towards other dogs to play, so you can seize that opportunity for a small talk.

Ask for permission if you want to pet their dog and try to keep it brief, as you wouldn’t want to cause inconvenience to the owner. This condo near Ortigas suggests checking condominiums that Pasig offers, especially those that feature open, green areas perfect for your furry friends.

Connecting with condo neighbors shouldn’t be hard. You just have to be proactive about it. Take it easy and have fun meeting your would-be friends.


Three Mistakes People Make When Visiting the Philippines

a horse-drawn carriage in the Philippines

Visiting a country for the first time can be very exciting. You get to learn more about a new culture, meet new people, and see places that you’ve only seen online. The Philippines, one of the top destinations in Southeast Asia, is an excellent choice for travel. The country is known for its pristine white beaches, multicultural history, and the friendliness of the locals. If you’re headed to the Philippines and want to have a safe and wonderful time, you should avoid making these mistakes:

Taking Things Too Fast

When you’ve only arrived in a new country, the best thing to do is take some time to relax. After a long flight, it’s best to nurse the jet lag at a comfortable spot, maybe a condo in Manila or Makati or a hotel of your choice. Many tourists make the mistake of hopping on the next flight to an island with no cell reception right after their long-haul flight. Not only does this put an immense toll on your body; you’re also setting yourself up for disappointment as you find that you’ll be too tired to enjoy anything.

The Philippines is one of the most laid-back countries in Southeast Asia. The locals like taking their time, whether it’s for work or relaxation. Take your time and enjoy the sights. You will have a better time for your vacation.

Only Staying in the Tourist Zones

rice fields in the philippines

Many tourists make the mistake of wedging themselves into every tight space flooded with other tourists. While tourist attractions and destinations surely are worth seeing, it is a disservice to yourself to only stay in these touristy areas. Eating food at typical restaurants and getting tours around the most popular haunts can give you a half-decent experience. You might experience lackluster service if you only stay in tourist zones, as the business owners want to serve as many people as possible, compromising the quality of the service.

There are many places tourists will find interesting that are not in a tour guide’s list. If you have friends in the area, ask them about these areas so you could see them for yourself and experience the true Philippines.

Being Carefree About Safety

The Philippines is a great country but not without fault. You can be scammed and robbed like in every other country. To avoid being victimized, be alert and aware at all times. Keep your valuables hidden and in a place where it can’t be quickly taken. It is always best to keep your valuables in check. Keep them in a hotel safe, especially passports, cards and traveler’s checks. Make sure that you do not wear jewelry that would attract attention, and always carry local currency. Follow these standard safety practices, and you will have a great time.

These are just some things that you need to avoid when you visit the Philippines. It’s a beautiful country with a lot to offer, so make sure that you make the most out of your trip. Bon voyage!

Four Types of Multifamily Financing that Every Investor Should Know

Real estate investorsMany investors are familiar with supporting a single-family house. However, they sometimes become confused and frightened when the discussion turns to multifamily funding. With that in mind, this article will describe the discrepancies between a private and business loan. Also, it will explain the various types of commercial lenders and how to qualify for a business mortgage. A commercial loan is merely a mortgage that supports properties that have five or more units.

Most investors prefer banks when it comes to multifamily funding. You can classify banks under three different categories: industrial banks, savings banks, and credit unions. Many people have supported most of their transactions through industrial or commercial banks.

Regional commercial banks are ordinarily much simpler to work with. They often have a deep understanding of the market, and they always search for demand deposits. With a commercial banker or portfolio lender, it is easier to get a transaction supported. Portfolio lenders hold their mortgages and do not trade them off to the secondary business. This makes them more amenable with their terms. Once you build a relationship, the bank can even give you deals from its portfolio.

If you’re a first-time real estate investor, you should consider getting a loan from multifamily financing services because they offer excellent tools for you to start your investments. Rates are generally in the ballpark of 4.5 percent and 12 percent, and you can find terms up to 35 years. Even seasoned professionals resort to these types of loans.

Multifamily financing is a mortgage system that you can use to buy or refinance smaller properties with two to four units or larger apartment buildings consisting of five units or more. There are four types that you can avail, and each has advantages for certain types of investors.

Conventional Multifamily Mortgage

Real estate investors discussing about finance

If you already have a banking relationship with a traditional lender, a conventional multifamily mortgage is the best for you. You can use this type of mortgage to finance a 2-4 unit building that is in excellent condition and use it as a rental property.

Government Backed Multifamily Mortgage

You can be a significant investor who wants to use the FHA multifamily loan to buy five or more units, or you can be an owner-occupant who wants to have 2-4 units of rental property. In either case, a government-backed mortgage is ideal for you.

Portfolio Multifamily Loan

If for some reason you don’t meet all the requirements of a conventional mortgage, don’t lose hope. You can still avail of a portfolio multifamily loan because it has flexible requirements. This type of loan is also available to investors who want to finance multiple properties at the same time because it can finance four to ten properties at once.

Short-term Multifamily Loan

If you’re into buying distressed properties for fix-and-flip, this type of loan is for you. This type of loan can include bridge loans and hard money loans, which you can use to invest in properties fast.

Remember that multifamily mortgages can finance two kinds of properties: residential investment properties with 2-4 units and an apartment building with 5 or more units. You need to know this distinction because the number of units will determine the financing option that you can avail.

Modern Technology Is Giving the Real Estate Industry a Makeover

Real estate agent with clientsFor the longest time, real estate selling has been about building relationships between buyers and sellers. Establishing trust and confidence is necessary, after all, to transform single transactions into a long-term partnership. Real estate agents today still have the same outlook; the way they conduct business and how buyers screen properties, however, have changed slightly. These days, savvy agents incorporate technological advances into their processes. In fact, those that refuse to adapt are often at a disadvantage.

Technology plays a significant role in real estate today. This is especially true in Western Australia where real estate properties are in large supply. The problem existed as early as 2008 when the population growth slowed while lot development projects increased. The Western Australian Planning Commission at that time approved 764 lots, but the population only grew by 498.

When supply is higher than demand, sellers must vie for buyers’ attention; and most of the time, as was mentioned, those who use technology are the ones who succeed.

Long-Distance Brokering

Thanks to technology and the Internet, distance is irrelevant in that buyers with the means and intent to buy a property anywhere in the country can do so with ease. Email, video and chat apps and social media help facilitate long-distance brokering. It is now possible, for example, for a real estate agent in Albany to cross-promote a listing to a network that reaches buyers from as far as Queensland.

Online Networking

Real estate agents may compete for buyers, but it’s customary for them to form networks to expand their reach. It’s a common practice for agencies that operate in partnership with a national company. Thanks to improving Internet infrastructure in Australia, agents can reach out to other agents in their network and request their help in finding potential buyers for the properties in their listings.

Online Marketing

Agent setting up online campaignsAs of June 2018, Australia’s Internet subscribers grew to 14.7 million — a 3.6 per cent increase in just six months. Naturally, real estate sellers and agents followed where their target markets are. Online advertisements, marketing campaigns via online magazines and real estate search engine optimisation (SEO) are just some methods that resulted from this development. Traditional practices like putting up a newspaper ad and handing out flyers still have their merits, but online marketing is an equally effective yet more convenient option.

Professional Real Estate Videography and Photography

High-performance cameras and smartphones are getting cheaper and marketing-savvy real estate professionals are taking advantage of the fact to boost their promotions. They produce high-quality images and videos that show real estate properties in the best light. The time and resources they invest in real estate videography and photography can pay off. A property’s appearance is a deciding factor for buyers, and videos and photos are an excellent way to show its appeal.

There’s no doubt about it: real estate benefits a lot from modern technology. It will serve sellers and buyers well to choose an agency that maximises technology in promoting, selling, and facilitating real estate purchases.

Amazing Hacks on Decorating Your Future Studio Condo Unit

Minimalist industrial condominiumOwning a house is one of our biggest dreams. We work hard to save money enough to buy our first residential property. For those who earn a good amount from their job or business, buying a condo unit is the preferred option. The luxury and comfort this type of property offers are so tempting that many people, especially the millennials allot a certain portion of their earnings to the monthly amortization.

When you’re planning to live in a studio-type condo unit or looking for Metro Manila condominiums for sale, you are only limited by your imagination. While the available space may look tight at first, there are several things you can do to maximize it. Here are some tips on using every nooks and cranny in your future studio-type condominium unit:

Know your style

Decorating your condo will be easy if you already have a well-defined style of your own. Experts explain that you can start by checking out a few magazines to see which styles would fit your personality. You can even ask any of your friends or several interior designers for some ideas as well. It’s important that your place reflects your personality, but make sure it follows the principles of interior design. You may also choose a style based on the latest trends or stick to the traditional or rustic feel.

Be bold

Couple having coffee before fixing the houseWhen it comes to decorating a small living space, using interesting pieces of furniture can turn a bland area into something extraordinary. You may opt for bold pieces that will make your ceilings and windows look taller. Buy decorative items that will make a strong statement and make your room stand out. The elements should be balanced and should work well with one another to create an inspiring and energizing atmosphere.

Consider the spaces above your head

Another brilliant way to utilize the space that you have is by using a loft design. If you have rather high ceilings, you can create an extra square footage for your bed. Doing so will help you maximize every square inch available in your studio-type condo unit. Consider adding a mezzanine or a hanging shelf for your decorative pieces and prized collections.

Consider using multipurpose pieces of furniture

Another way to maximize your space is by adding convertible pieces of furniture. Choose the ones that can double as a sofa by morning and a bed at night. It will help you save space without feeling too crowded at the same time. Some art pieces can turn into tables. You can also buy a couch that has a storage space or a pull out bed or the one with a drawer for additional storage space. This will eliminate the need for an extra bed or another cabinet for the beddings.

These are just some of the things that you may want to consider if you are planning to live in a condo. Living in this type of property has its own set of challenges, but you just need to learn how to work your way through it. You are sure to find solutions to these challenges in no time.