Only about a decade ago, Cebu was known mainly for its tourism industry. However, according to recent statistics, it is actually the city with fastest economic growth at 5% per year. In keeping pace with the rapid growth, various real estate opportunities have sprung up throughout the city. People are actively thinking of relocating to this city because of its huge economic growth index. From studio apartments to mansions and condominiums, the city's real estate market presents the best opportunities for anyone who wishes to settle down in the Philippine city.
However, a word of caution should be mentioned here. It definitely sounds like a lucrative deal for foreigners to own a property in Philippines at only a fraction of the cost that will be required to purchase a property in their native countries. But, for a foreigner to own a property in Cebu, he must have a Philippine wife/girlfriend, as the property can be purchased only under her name. Also, there are restrictions on the type of property that foreigners can purchase here. At present, the local real estate regulations dictate that only condominiums can be purchased by foreign citizens who have committed to a relationship with a native woman. That said, you can proceed with owning a property in Cebu.
While purchasing the property, you should arrange for a local agent in the city. There are many unreliable agents, so try your best to get in touch with a genuine and licensed contractor. Find someone who has a good website and can present actual verifiable client testimonials. Even after you have hired someone genuine make sure that you are checking out the property in person before you sign the dotted line of purchase. The property inspection should be professionally accomplished. Just a visual examination won't suffice. Find a certified property inspector who can thoroughly inspect the home. The property inspector should necessarily have an architectural degree or an engineering degree. Follow the recommendations of the inspector before making the purchase.
Finally, negotiate and set the right price of the property. If you are a foreign national buying the property under the name for your native fiancee, you can expect to face a very steep price in the beginning. Learn to negotiate. Conduct some online research to see the approximate price range of similar properties in the city and finally decide on a price that is within that range.