Should you Buy a “Rights Only” Property in the Philippines?


Do you have plans of investing your hard-earned money? One of the most promising decisions you may have is investing in real estate. Evidence has shown that real estate is among the most profitable investments you can make right now! Aside from the fact that its value increase over time, it can also generate your income when you convert these properties into something else, such as a housing lease, property rental, or even a farm. The issue is, properties in the Philippines are far too costly now, but every now and then, someone somewhere will introduce you to a property with just a Tax Declaration or with “rights only”. This is prevalent even more so in rural provinces where the beneficiaries fail to do it for various possible reasons such as they do not really concern about registering the property because they do not even know how to go about it, or they don’t have the funds to complete it or find it challenging to do it. If this is interesting to you, then continue reading to know what a “rights only” property is.

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What are real property rights in the Philippines?

Real property rights actually describe the theoretical and legal possession of resources as well as their use. Private citizens, business owners, and government agencies can all already have these resources, which may be both tangible and intangible. People normally exercise private property rights or the rights of private persons to accrue, keep, designate, lease, or sell their real estate in most countries such as the Philippines. Property rights are the foundation of all market exchange and the distribution of property rights in a societal structure influences the effectiveness of commodity use.

Owning a property entails being protected by laws that are firmly established and enacted by the government. Such real property rights cover ownership as well as any corresponding advantages that accrue with possessing the real estate. Property is a broad term, and protection under the law for different types of property varies by a regulatory authority.

Possession of real estate situated in the Philippines differs significantly for such categories as land, condo units, buildings, and houses. Possession over land property is exclusively reserved for Filipino nationals and domestic corporations with at least 60 percent as to whose stock ownership is acquired by Filipino citizens. Foreign nationals who wish to acquire land in the Philippines may do so by investing in local firms and strategic partnerships, though they are confined to a 40% stake. The regulation is made mandatory by the 1987 Constitution of the Philippines, its supreme law, to safeguard local ownership even further into the upcoming years. It is a required component that the Philippines’ guided experience for land grants allows for a rigid and conscientious assessment of possible future qualifications of landowners. Possession of registered land is clearly reflected through either an original or transfer certificate of the title given by the appropriate register of deeds. On the other hand, ownership of a condominium unit can be proven by a condominium certificate of title. With regards to real property other than land and condominium units, there is currently no system that is comparable to the Torrens system for registration pursuant to which a file is granted to ascertain the title of the property owner.

The Civil Code of the Philippines mentions that real properties are controlled by the law where they are located. At the microeconomic level, local municipalities are required to collaborate with their stakeholders to develop a comprehensive land use strategy that guides the construction, consumption, and maintenance of land areas within their corresponding territories. Local city councils may update or revise zoning regulations to support the plan. The plan, but even so, must demonstrate compliance with zoning regulations and guidelines established by the Philippine government. Essentially, purchases related to real properties situated in the Philippines must be guided by Philippine law. Whereas the Civil Code of the Philippines recognizes that the parties to an agreement have the freedom to specify terms of the contract, they must not be contrary to law, morals, or public policy, especially since Philippine laws are regarded to be fully integrated into every agreement. As a result, Philippine real estate laws are incorporated into each and every contract of sale, lease, or other real estate possession. If you are planning to invest in real estate then you should first investigate the zoning ordinance of the local area you want to establish your property, rather than settle with real estate which cannot be harnessed for your intent desired. Even before due diligence is critical because a location-specific clearance is required to obtain a building permit or a permit to operate a business from the local government. Discordance with the dedicated land usage may be permitted under zoning ordinances if the stipulated conditions are met.

What is a “rights only” property?

What “rights only” properties refer to are estates of land or property granted by the government to relocated people from lower socioeconomic status. Often these relocation places in the Philippines are granted with “rights only” although a few of these properties transform into legal possession eventually when the government accorded them the real property title. Documents for these types of real estate are obtainable in the municipal’s LUPAHO (Local Urban Poor Affairs and Housing Office) (Local Urban Poor Affairs and Housing Office).

Enrollment of unregistered property under the Torrens system is discretionary on the role of the owner of the property. Even so, to be able to obtain the protection provided by the Torrens system, property owners must register their titles within this system. It is also not necessary to register a transaction involving registered land (such as a sale, mortgage, or lease). But even so, such as in the particular circumstance of property owners prefer to register their title under the Torrens system, individuals struggling to deal with registered land usually register their best interest under the Torrens system. This same registration of these kinds of interests with the noteworthy register of deeds makes up the right to be informed of all such interests to any and all individuals. Actual evidence of the registration is the modification of the interests on the title deed encompassing the property.

Is it ideal to purchase a “rights only” property?

“Rights only” properties can be extremely cheap because you are yet provided with a Certificate of Title. Even though “rights only” properties can be cost-effective, they can also be extremely risky. Threats may include but are not limited to either acquiring the property from an individual who is not legally entitled to the real estate or this could give rise to a Double Sale or a situation when the real estate is sold to 2 or more different property buyers. Anywhere, in that case, you will risk losing your finances and even risk ending up in a protracted legal battle.

You need to know that this type of circumstance is prevalent only in geographically distant regions and provinces. When someone presents to offer you an untitled and rights only property in a highly-urbanized city, such as those in Metro Manila, be extremely cautious!

What is the opinion of most legal experts about buying a “rights only” property?

Numerous experts do not encourage looking to buy a “rights only” property even so. The Philippine Supreme Court always decides that the best proof of ownership of a piece of land is the Certificate of Title.  Moreover, It can take years and years even before the title will be given access to you. They are inexpensive, but you will not have a sense of security knowing that something could happen in the future and you will not have a sufficient legitimate title to it after making investments in major changes and constructing a property.

If you are looking for an ideal real estate property to invest in, then you may check out the different properties available from BRIA Homes. BRIA Homes primes itself on developing affordable house and lot packages and easy-on-the-pocket condominium units that cater to ordinary Filipino families who aspire to acquire their own homes. It had become the perfect choice for average Filipino workers who wanted to invest in a high-quality and affordable home. Visit to reserve your very own BRIA property today!

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Written by MC Sanchez