Overpriced? Metro Manila Properties Became Even Less Affordable for the Average Filipino in 2020


There’s no denying Metro Manila boasts quality properties in its high-rise condos and exclusive villages, but wealth inequality means that only a fraction of the population can purchase such properties. If you take into account the income of the average Filipino and the state of minimum wage, Metro Manila is one of the most unaffordable cities to purchase or rent property in the world.

According to real estate data cruncher Priced Out Property, Metro Manila’s property affordability had the second highest decrease from 2016 to 2020. The UK-based mortgage company Online Mortgage Advisor determined “affordability” after finding the average price of one square meter of apartments in cities across the world and comparing them with the average annual salary in said country in 2016 and 2020. Based on this metric, Metro Manila came in second in terms of the biggest decrease in affordability of properties in Asia, just after Mashhad in Iran.

Other unaffordable places to purchase property in Asia? Tehran, Iran; Vadodara, Pune, and Hyderabad in India; Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Taipei, Taiwan, Krasnodar, Russia (Eastern half); and Seoul, South Korea.


Photo by Priced Out Property.

When it comes to renting in Metro Manila, the prospects are even worse. Properties are now 64 percent less affordable for the everyday Juan based on property prices and annual salaries from 2016 to 2020. According to Price Out Property’s numbers, the average Filipino would need 154 percent of their annual salary to afford one year’s worth of rent in a one-bedroom apartment in Metro Manila.

In terms of rent affordability, Metro Manila had the third highest decrease, coming after Tehran and Mashhad in Iran. Other unaffordable cities to rent in Asia include: Colombo, Sri Lanka; Lahore, Pakistan; Bangkok, Thailand; and Mumbai, Vadodara, Jaipur, and Ahmedabad, India.


Photo by Priced Out Property.

Of course, that’s not to say the Philippine residential market is failing. Residential properties in Metro Manila remain a steady form of investments and there’s a rising market of potential buyers interested in foreclosed properties. It just so happens, these properties—and their prices—aren’t for everyone.

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Anri Ichimura
Section Editor, Esquire Philippines
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