STAKEHOLDERS in Cebu’s real estate industry predict a property boom in 2024 as developers race to build new projects to sell to the market.
However, while this presents abundant opportunities for real estate-related businesses, it also poses a threat to the industry as the boom could potentially give rise to more “colorum” salespersons targeting the industry’s top buyers—the overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).
“In 2024, we will be having the biggest boom ever in the real estate (industry),” said Anthony Gerard Leuterio, national president of A Better Real Estate Philippines (Abrep). “If there’s a demand, there might be people who will take advantage.”
Abrep is the largest organization of real estate brokers and allied professionals in the real estate industry.
Real estate projects were put on hold for the past two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Leuterio said there is now a diminishing supply of units to sell to the market, as these are still the projects launched and built in the pre-pandemic years.
According to Leuterio, strong demand will still come from house and lot and condominium projects, which most OFWs heavily invest in. He said out of the US$36 billion OFW remittances, about 40 to 50 percent goes to real estate, or about P1 trillion.
Given this market opportunity, Leuterio believes now is the time to professionalize all salespersons to prepare them for the property boom and protect the industry.
At present, Dr. Eduardo Ong of the Philippine Federation of Real Estate Professionals Inc. estimates that there are at least 120,000 unlicensed salespersons in the industry.
Instead of apprehending them, Ong suggests reaching out to them and encouraging them to professionalize their practice.
Ong endorses the Accredited Real Estate Salespersons of the Philippines Inc. (Acres) as a good platform for unlicensed salespersons to start their professional venture in real estate.
Acres membership now stands at over 3,000 real estate salespersons nationwide.
The organization believes that real estate salespersons also need strong industry support, as they are the ones actively selling real estate properties across the country.
It said 80 percent of real estate sales come from salespersons.
“The salespersons are the frontliners in the property markets. Real estate products do not move without sellers. Yet, for most of the time, they are the very people who are being used and abused by realty firms, developers and even our own buyers. Our present laws only provide regulation but not protection or some benefit or incentives and to think we significantly contribute to the real estate business,” said Acres national president Chris Malazarte.
About 500 professional real estate salespersons from all over the Visayas were in Cebu City for the first Visayas Real Estate Leadership Summit hosted by Acres Phils. The event was a follow-through from the successful Mindanao leg last week.