1. MAKE SURE TO SET DOWN EVERYTHING IN BLACK AND WHITE
Vox emissa volat; litera scripta manet - Words spoken vanish; the written letter remains. Maybe it’s one of the reasons why Statutes of Frauds provides that agreements to be enforceable needs to be in writing and subscribed by both parties, like an agreement in real estate. While, there are instances wherein some choose not to write down every agreement because of the trust reposed towards the other party, always remember that writing it down is a necessity no matter how simple the agreement is. When you are buying a million worth of property, it always follows that you have something as a proof that payment has been made as well as conveyance of ownership, otherwise you are just throwing away your money for property which is only half yours. Writing it down doesn’t mean that the element of trust isn’t there, it’s a matter of preserving your interest so in case of conflict in the future there is a document to guard and protect you. Provided further that before signing any agreement, make sure to read the entire provisions, since maybe an item you missed will have a big deal in the future.
Normally, it is the seller who pays for the capital gains tax/creditable withholding tax, however, there's no exact provision in the law as to who will shoulder for the expenses of the sale, it’s always upon the agreement of the parties concerned and there enters the indispensable role of a contract.
It really pays to have technical know-how in real estate since we adhere to the latin maxim of Ignoratia legis non excusat, which means ignorance of the law excuses no one. As experience, there are some who buy properties without knowing that the sale is subject to VAT, thus the contract is silent as to who shoulders the VAT, which is a big problem and causes further delay in the transfer and titling rocess especially if there's no one who wants to give way.
To give you a better understanding, the following, among others, are VAT exempt transactions (BIR Revenue Regulations 03-2012):
Sale of Dealer/Developer
2. EXERCISE DUE DILIGENCE
It is based on the premise of Caveat Emptor, or let the buyer beware, in so doing, before committing yourself in buying a property, check not only the certified true copy but the original copy of the title at the Registry of Deeds, check whether there are annotations at the back of the title like encumbrances, liens, mortgage, adverse claim, or pending suit (lis pendens), Section 4, Rule 74 of the Rules of Court, sale or donation of undivided portion and any other claims to the property depreciative to its value, because without doing it, you will take and shoulder all risks and the one at loss due to such negligence. There are some instances also where there are fake titles roaming around, and it really pays to take extra attention to the authenticity of the title and the reliability of the person you are contracting to.
Here are simple ways of checking the authenticity of titles:
For new titles:
1. Check the bar code at the lower left portion, it should reflect the title number when scanned.
2. Check the bar code on the lower right portion of the title, it should reflect the serial number of the title when scanned.
For old titles:
1. Date of registration should be after the date of printing of the title
2. Check water marks or security marks- it must be either NLTDRA or LRA
3. Check the name and signature of the RD at the time of registration
To determine the exact area of the lot, plot the technical description using lot plotting by computer (Informatik MapDraw Software)
1. When the property regime governing the spouses is absolute community of property except when the property is acquired by gratuitous title, or acquired before marriage by a spouse who is survived by a legitimate descendants by a prior marriage.
2. When the property regime governing the spouses is conjugal partnership of gains except, when the property is acquired by gratuitous title or with the exclusive funds or property of the acquiring spouse.
3. BENEFITS OF CASH PAYMENT
While long term payment is not a heavy burden than outright cash payment, for wise buyers and for those who are practical, buying a property on a cash basis poses many benefits wherein you can enjoy the benefit of a discount, as compared to long term payment, wherein aside from having no discount, your payment is subject to monthly amortizations.