How much will it cost to build a house?

I am new in this community, just retired and would like to continue with my previous planning to build a house in Oslob, Cebu. I have a 2D and semi 3D drawing of the house and have in my mind how it should look like. It will be not a common western style of house, but an ancient Asian type of house (Japanese/Chinese/Korean) combined with Balinese touch. The 'living area' of the house will be around 120 - 160 sqms. We bought already a land in Oslob (my fiancee is Filipina).  Anyone knows good 'Architect, builder, contractor' who is really reliable? I don't expect the finish of the house will be like 'BMW' or 'Porsche' or 'Mercedes', but NOT 'chop chop' car like Rusco etc. Our experience with small condo we just bought in Cebu was horrible. We must get 'new good Subcontractor', spend almost 2 months to remove all inside the condo incl. CR and must ‘redo’ all over again and teach the 'new good sub constructor' and his workers how to do 'good' work, must stayed in hotel close to this condo to 'control' their job every few days. Was stressful experiences just for a small 24 sqm condo. Lucky this nightmare is over now and we really can enjoy to come to Cebu city and stay in our condo instead looking for accommodation in
I would appreciate if someone in this community who had good experiences with her/his 'builder/contractor/architect' could help us. Important I think to have some one living in South part of Cebu, not too far from Oslob.


Can i have your Facebook please looking to start building my house next year :) .

Building something that is new to the locals will mean you being there each day to supervise and also instructing them on the build.  I began wondering how strong the concrete was when my guys were talking about 8 to 1 mix until I realised that the chaps can only carry half a bag of sand that results in 4 to 1 haha. The finishers will be expensive but worth their money. About 2 out of 10 workers will be hard workers and the others trying to spread the job out. Make sure your "guest CR" has a bucket and taboo on the right hand side and I found soaking the grout in the tiles with a silican fluid from ACE hardware keeps them less dingy. I enjoyed using the PPR pipe work 3/4 inches allows good pressure to your sinks etc and trey to design with out junctions that add up to cut the pressure down, PPr pipe bend a treat! good luck

sirrobcentral :

Dimples, on my Facebook page I have been posting the progress videos of my house as it is being built. I started with just a shell and lot... cost P470,000,00. I showed from start to present... Upon completion it will be a 3bdr + a Master's Suite + a separate maid's quarters... it's all captured on video so there are no questions as to the facts. Upon completion my out of pocket for construction cost will not be over P600,000,00. I will inbox you my Facebook contact information so you can view for your self. I have a lot of videos I have made that I share with my friends from the United States because many are Pensioners like me that just want to live stress free.

Hi. can i get your facbook or u can email me on ***. looking to start build my house in silang next year. Will very much appreciate your reply.

Moderated by Priscilla last year
Reason : Do not post your personal contact details on a public forum for your own security

Hi..I was planning to build a house too, can you please inbox me your facebook as well?
Thank you.

Hi there im a ex pat aussie  married we live in oslob  cebu got a great beach front land  im very intetested in your comments .family lives in Minglanilla. Just 2 hours away so im at the building  site each day watching ...our budget is 3m for house  as im a trade qualified builder in australia  im doing it all  .but not the hollow blocks ..

Rollie poly :

Hi there im a ex pat aussie  married we live in oslob  cebu got a great beach front land  im very intetested in your comments .family lives in Minglanilla. Just 2 hours away so im at the building  site each day watching ...our budget is 3m for house  as im a trade qualified builder in australia  im doing it all  .but not the hollow blocks ..

Hi Rollie poly

I take it you are talking about the cost of building the house?  As I assume you (wife) have already purchased the land?

It is not very easy to answer your question.  You will need to know how many squares will the house be, 100 or 300 square meters?  How many floors, how many windows, type of glass you will be using, type of finishing you are looking at, balconies, etc. etc.

I am also not sure what your question is?  It sounds like you have already started to build, yet you have not done and estimate on how much it will cost you.

Dear Rollie, we just lost an Australian chap who also worked in the building trade and got into all sorts of bother with the local builders because of different styles of "doing it" in the Philippines. Frustration and patience are your main worries and we went through the same experience building our homes since 2006.
Its the finishing that the guys are not so hot on and its high paid men who have the skills. Also the architects here do not consider the suns position when designing the house and when you move in, its a case of "we should have done this or that".
We built a small place in San Lius Batangas where I could put together marine ply sailing dinghy's and go straight through my driveway down the beach. When the coconut palms bent almost double during typhoons I'd be out on the balcony with a hot mug of tea taking in the airs and rain haha.

Its difficult for a foreigner without practical skills to follow the plans and check progress and the only way is to rely on a large developer who has a good reputation.

hi can you also send me the videos or tag me in facebook so i can have an idea before building a house? thank you very much

Please tell me your facebook id for the house video

A home builder is called just an architect here and will have some designs to interest prospective new clients. His quotation for what you want will be in the region of 25,000 pesos per sq meter of living space. A small 2 bed home either bungalow or 2 story will be about 80 sq mts therefore we are saying 2 million for the package. If you want special granite tiles and upmarket bathroom fittings they will be extra since  his price is for simple mid range fittings. Doing it yourself will be just over half that figure but you will need a good foreman (not family) to get the workers moving!!! It is imperative that you visit at least 2 properties that have been built by this architect before parting with a deposit. Usually the architect will have premises where he stores his sand and gravel that he bulk orders.

Hello sirrobcentral can I have ur fb page too please.  I need to build a house too

I’m planning on moving there and would like to see your video if possible.

sorry folks there are no videos or facebook accounts on our house building but simply rent a house when you arrive and visit subdivisions where building work is going on. Usually the workers there are only too pleased to show u round the house since they may be given the contract.  I anyone is coming to San Pablo I am only too happy to meet and chat about the building process. This new bunglow were are building in Hacienda Escudero will be our 5th home that we've built so much experience to offer.

You can buy a nice completed house and land in a nice area under 3 million PHP in Davao City so this will give you an idea.

I too would be interested on the building project and cost, Starting construction in Lugait

Frode :

Hello. Plan to build houses in Davao. Do you have any advice?

Greeting Frode.

I am thinking about building a house in Davao. I am curious to know if you pursued your project. Any lessons learned?

I am interested also interested in learning about design build firms in Davao. Has anyone worked with such a firm in Davao? Suggestions, critiques, please


Hi.  I read your post.  Can you refer me to those who built your house?  My siblings home will be demolished and if we do not build on the lot, they won’t have a place to live.  Nothing fancy.  The area is not good with dilapidated neighboring homes.

Thank you for your post.  Very informative and helpful.

Thank you for your post.  Very informative and helpful.

hi, me too i bought a lot in Bohol and i want build house, i am interested to have some information for start build, i would like to start september, thanks

If you buy a place thats built then its important you visit other homes of the same calibre to check on the builders work. nothing is visible under the concrete and savings can be made on steel and concrete quality.  I know this may sound strange but house building here in the Philippines in Barranguy is not difficult and so many of the locals will have experience in the work. The hard part is finding an honest foreman who can DRIVE the workers before they take advantage of a foreigner. Ask around but make sure you order the material and pay cash yourself, avoid recommendations for cheaper shops because there is always a catch!

can you show me your house, im interested in building one too

Hello Jimmy, our house was finished 3 years ago and now is covered with creepers on a walkway and trees in the back. We have 2 water features and a fishpond that complete the landscaping. At the back I have made a small greenhouse and a workshop to make a dirty area with a vice on a bench. In the latter I've wired a box to attach our Honda Generator for brown outs.  the paint has begun to peel off the walls and the whole place looks like an old farmhouse !!!  We have an open front having the kitchen, dining area and reception available for fresh air that comes in from the back garden, this is not being security minded but we have 4  noisy dogs to keep people out. So Jimmy I cannot send you pictures but take these recommendations for your designs:  Bedrooms/bathrooms face east, kitchens north, reception areas the south with tree or shade cover. Laundry to the West...wash in the morning and dry after lunch. Not always possible to get all the rooms right but do avoid the bedrooms for south and west because you will need aircon to be able to sleep in them and thats 1,000 pesos a time for electric.

38 000USD not bad at all for all this

The approximate cost for building our home including insulated steel roof, steel roof trusses, filled 5 inch hollow block throughout the house, 9 1/2 foot ceilings, electrical, plumbing, septic system, tiled floors throughout the house, powder coated aluminum frame windows with reflective glass and screens, doors and hardware, window grilles, granite counter tops, custom cabinets and paint was about 2 million pesos.

You have to expect about 22K to 25K php per sq mt meter floor size for a package deal cost of the house or bungalow. One floor or 2 floors will cost the same. (surprisingly).

Dark tinted windows with insect screens will darken your room considerably and electric lights will need to be switched on during dull days. Nicer to design your rooms and windows with the suns direction in mind for your amenities and have clear glass windows with curtains. SM sell curtains that completely shut out the suns rays.

Bedroom windows that face the East and morning sunshine will be cooler to enter after lunch time.  Cooking areas are more easier to work in if facing the North. Laundry areas in the West will be hot after lunch when the washing is up for drying. Reception areas will be shaded with trees and bamboo roofing and face the south when the suns rays will provide shadows moving across the space very nicely.

I know the feeling ...trusting my inlaws and even my ex wife costed me a lot of money ...i advice every foreigner not to trust anyone when it comes to money !
Ofcourse not every filipina has bad intentions but if you send money always think it will not end up were you think it will !
I trusted my inlaws to build a house in Osmeña , surigoa del norte , dinagat islands and every month i send money for almost a year because i am on disability and wanted to retire there coz that was better for my health ...after one year sending money and me and my ex were ready to move over and leave everything here behind ...i was stunned when i arrived ...the house was supposed to be ready to move in but all i saw was 4 walls and a roof 😳😳😳
No floors , no tiles , no windows short terms something that should look like a house after 2 to 4 weeks ...i went sick to my stomach when i saw it ! Thinking i could relax and enjoy my life ...i frooze coz i knew all my money was gone ...when i asked for a explanation they came up with hundreds of excuses but not one was satisfying me !
My ex tried to calm me down by saying we are here now lets make th best of it !
I tried for months and spend even more money on finishing it so i could atleast sleep and wash but living in a construction site made me even more sick and sadly i had to go back after 4 month for another surgery ...its been almost 2 years now since i was last there wife left me before the surgery coz she didnt want to take care of me and we are in a serious battle coz she dont want to give me anything back that i invested claiming the house was build on her grandparents land so the house belongs to her grandparents ...we got divorced last year and she already have another ! I am still fighting even my health is not good to get back what is mine ...but my ex and her family really showed me what there true intentions were when we met in 2011.... just using me and taking advantage of my good heart ...i hate them but i hate myself even more for trusting those people

Cavite is a good spot how ever go there for a holiday and find out more get to know people there otherwise prices you get will always increase

Hello Moreto62,

Inquiring minds want to know: How many SQ meters (living space) for your $$$ ?

Your question is rather broad. If you consider Cavite and Cebu for instance land costs maybe the biggest component .
House construction depends on the quality of your builder and if your not living in the area where you intend to build. Then quality control could be an issue as some will take as many short cuts as they can get away with.
So you need to sort the management issues first. Then sit down and work your budget as this will govern what you build. 120sqm then the house sounds like it will be two storey as lots are small 100sqm in Cebu for instance is very common.

We have just completed a 130 sqm house in Cebu all concrete construction on a 100 sqm lot .  4 bed with accommodation and a car slot. The  cost was around 3million Pesos for the house only. As we had the an old house on this lot. The cost included the knock down and full rebuild. With building time around 18 months.

Thanks Wooden,

My wife & I live in Pasig City, we have a 3 story house 65 meters on each floor, the house was reconstructed (rebuilt) over the years from the ground up while we lived in Las Vegas. The contractor was my wifes brother who is a contractor. First floor living room, kitchen, bathroom. Second floor 3 bedrooms and bathroom and third floor master bedroom, kitchen & bathroom.

We have been looking for a home away from Manila and we are having difficulty for what we want. We want a bungalow or ranch style home maybe with two bedrooms. No more stairs for us, getting too old. Also I want a front & back yard.

For the cost of building or buying we should have stayed in Las Vegas, what we want isn't any cheaper in the Philippines. I don't have a car, I was going to buy one but the traffic is nuts in metro Manila. Moving away from Manila then I would buy a car and have our freedom back.

I was hoping (Moreto62) would have replied because he mention what he has for two million pesos, I was interested in sq meters, how many floors & bedrooms in his house.

Sounds like your on top of it.  I prefer the Cebu or Visayas as my wife is from Leyte . One thing fr sure if your prepared to move away some from majo centre you will find a bargain. I am fairly familiar with Cavite as my sister in law lives there and its changed alot and prices have risen as the middle class is growing size and wealth.

good luck

Hello Dude,

Let me make this straight clear to you that, you cannot own a land or plot in the Phils as a foreigner.

Secondly, if you are planning to get a land though, it will be in the name of either your business partners or Spouse, which i will not advise you to do that bcos you might end up not having any property in the phils when this partner or spouse come out with their true color.

So my advice for you is to buy a condo which you can buy outrightly or you start paying the mortgage, which you can sell or rent later in future and the title of ownership will be in your name.

This is the best option you can ever have.please and please, dont buy plot or land in the name of a partner or spouse bcos you dont know what the future hold.



Theres more than one way to skin a cat. Some have built and signed an agreement of lease for 30 years over the owner.Others have left a significant amount owing  [ by Philo standards , but easy for foreigners ] as away of discouraging the greedy. Or just  simply rent and sign a long lease.

But the bottom line is choose your mate wisely, do not rush in where wise men fear to tread. :) As much as you find the local girls attractive they also find you attractive, use that to your advantage. I wouldn't claim poverty but dont advertise wealth either.

As mentioned elsewhere take your time do some networking. Get involved and as assimilate as much as you can handle. In short become a local, make local friends and dont splash your money around live modestly. In living modestly no fancy wrist watch or  cell phone and above all do not buy a mercedes for transport. Buy instead a middle of the road vehicle, look what the middle class  locals are driving.
As a foreigner you stand out like dogs balls, but theres no point is doing it in neon lights. Also know the area where you want to live, pick a good area as suggested by locals or your own research . An area populated by other foreigners, the more the merrier.

There good people out there, but if you do it the wrong way you will attract the wrong attention. I have been married for over 30 years and have been to the Philippines countless times. The in laws a very good people and I have never had an issue of integrity or honesty with them in all this time and the family is very big by Philo standards. So it can be done and a goodlife can be lived in the Phils.

now rule change foreigner can buy lot and home his own name, lot should be less then 1000 sm

Rule not change ...foreigner can lease land for 25 years ,,,never own !

Than you have been lucky simple ...there are alot of that were not so lucky ...i was very carefull but still was cheated and used in the end you never know

For a condo, a foreigner can own. But impossible to own a house for a foreigner whatever the size . There is no change since 1987

Completely right !

Generally those who would like to scam a foreigner are saying that they can own a house and lot.
60% of condo in a building must be owned by Filipinos, 40% by foreigners. Only condo can be owned by foreigners, but not the land over which the building is built

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