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What is the Role of HLURB in helping homebuyers and homeowners?

23 August 2022
What is the Role of HLURB in helping homebuyers and homeowners

In recent years, the residential sector of the Philippine real estate market has seen significant expansion due to the ever-increasing need for housing in the country's rapidly urban development.

 

Because of the continued health of the real estate market, safeguards against fraud and deception by financial institutions are more important for consumers looking to invest in a house. This is the reason why the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) was created to oversee such matters.

 

Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board

 

Being one of the major government agencies in the nation, the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) is responsible for a wide range of technical assistance, including but not limited to housing rules, property development and homeowners associations, and the resolution of land disputes.

 

Policy development, comprehensive land use plans, and regulations are enforced via the HLURB's efforts. The company's offerings are aimed towards the real estate industry, including homebuyers, builders, HOAs, brokers, and local government units.

 

How HLURB was created?

 

Former President Ferdinand Marcos, Sr. issued Executive Order 419 on September 19, 1973 (one year after the proclamation of Martial Law) to establish the Task Force on Human Settlements, which would develop a national framework plan to identify high-need regions for human settlement projects.

 

Thereafter, the Human Settlements Regulatory Commission was established under the Presidential Decree no. 1396 of 1978 to facilitate land reform programs at that time.

 

It was under the presidency of Rodrigo Duterte that a 10-year national housing strategies program was established, with the goal of coordinating the efforts of various shelter agencies (including HLURB) to improve the industry's overall efficiency.

 

Importance of HLURB to homebuyers and future subdivision owners

 

HLURB is a resource that helps people who are looking to purchase a house by presenting them with a checklist of things to keep in mind. Some of the important things that this national institution recommends are the following:

 

  • The HLURB mandates that all prospective property purchasers seek the required certificates, including a Certificate of Registration and a License to Sell, before making any transactions.

  • The website (www.hlurb.gov.ph) details both the projects that are the subject of the aforementioned papers and the current proceedings that have resulted in the issuance of a halt and desist order or suspension.

  • A trip to the location is also highly recommended.

  • Potential homebuyers of verified projects should make sure that the advertised facilities and amenities, as well as the estimated date of completion, all conform to the HLURB-approved master plan.

  • An interested buyer should also verify that the real estate agent or broker they are working with is properly licensed by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and has all the necessary paperwork for HLURB brokers' registration before making any offers on properties.

  • Homebuyers should also check the Registry of Deeds to verify that the property has not already been sold.

  • The buyer is also responsible for double-checking with HLURB to ensure that all building materials utilized are in accordance with all applicable regulations. You should also consider the water system, as well as who will be liable for the utility fees such as water and electricity meters, a security fence, etc.

  • Buyers are cautioned against signing a blank form and encouraged to study the contract's terms and conditions carefully before signing. It is also recommended that they save copies of the contract and any other paperwork pertaining to it. It is the buyer's responsibility to ensure that the contract is documented with the Registry of Deeds and making payment directly to the owner or authorized marketing agency of the project. Last but not least, purchasers should always save their original receipt.

 

In addition to these recommendations, HLURB also identifies three buyer's rights intended to protect the customer:

 

1. Failure to Pay Installments

If a buyer is unable to make the required payments on time, they may invoke their rights under the Realty Installment Buyer Protection Act, Republic Act No. 6552. The provision is likewise included in Section 24 of PD 957.

 

As stated in PD 95 7, there are consequences for breaking its rules, both administrative and criminal. While criminal penalties are filed with the fiscal's office, the HLURB steps in as a quasi-judicial body to evaluate the administrative component of the case.

 

2. Non-forfeiture of Payments

 

There are cases in which projects do not turn out as expected and do not conform to the authorized plan within the allotted time limit. In such circumstances, the buyer may postpone payment by providing notice to the owner or developer. This is specified in Article 23 of Ordinance No. 957. In addition, the purchaser has the option of requesting a complete refund of all money paid as permitted by law.

 

3. Right to a Clean Title

 

Once the seller received the full payment, the buyer is entitled to a clear title to the property. A mortgaged property must be redeemed within six months of full payment to the owner or developer. Clause 25 of Presidential Decree 957 (PD 957) expressly grants this power. The sole cost to the buyer is the one associated with recording the deed of sale with the Registry of Deeds. Real estate taxes, as outlined in Section 26 of the same decree, are the responsibility of the buyer if he or she has inhabited the property prior to the transfer of title into his or her name.

 

Availing of a real estate property is a serious thing to consider as it can cost an arm and a leg. For this reason, prospective Filipino homebuyers would do well to familiarize themselves with their legal obligations and protections before making any commitments toward a house and lot package.

 

Thankfully, there are developers available in the country that are regulated by the HLURB to help home seekers, especially first-time homebuyers, to buy a house and lot package without worrying about the legality of the transactions-- like Lumina Homes.

 

Lumina Homes, one of the most trusted and leading developers in the Philippines, continue to keep the Filipino dream to have a house of their own alive and offer high-quality housing segment all over the country.

 

We have more than 50 projects nationwide that are located in key cities and municipalities to secure the property value of each home model unit that our residents and future homeowners have.

 

In addition, we help our homebuyers with whatever method of payment is most suitable for them, which makes the whole process of purchasing a property easy and stress-free. We offer flexible payment methods that include bank home loans and in-house financing to ease the burden of our homebuyers.

 

To know more about the different flexible payment schemes that we offer, you can message us here on our website or contact us on the numbers and email indicated below.

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