As published in The Standard on August 12, 2015


Condos are hot. There’s a new one in every corner of the metropolis and people keep buying them. Most of us were raised in single­ or double­story houses and all these high rises are still somewhat new to us, which can probably explain why condos are hot. And there’s also the fact that the city is getting so congested that we really have to build upwards to accommodate the growing population.


While Metro Manila’s business and commercial districts are increasingly going vertical, the urban sprawl is marked by horizontal developments. The outskirts of the region ­ the suburbs of Bulacan, Laguna, Cavite and Rizal ­ are home to countless gated communities. They’re all wildly popular, too.


Real estate experts have this rule­of­thumb that if you’re in the market for a new home but have no idea what kind of property to get, you should look at two vertical developments and two horizontal developments for you to really get a feel of things and help you decide.


And to help you get started on your search for the perfect abode, The Gist got in touch with Eton Properties, developer of both kinds of residential properties, for a crash course on the main differences between the two.


Based on insight gathered, they find that those already living in the city, particularly young executives working at CBDs, startup couples and students from well­off families, tend to favor condominiums and high­rise apartments. The main reasons are security, comfort and convenience. Condos are also said to be compatible with the modern on­the-go lifestyle.


On the other hand, those who desire a retirement abode close to the metro but located at areas where there is fresher air and more space usually go for the classic house­and­lot package. These are people who want to feel a sense of community. Interestingly, these markets are not limited to older folk. According to Eton Properties, many startup couples prefer to raise their young families in villages where they can get the ideal sense of community.


And developers are bringing alot of the convenience of vertical living to their horizontal projects so that residents don’t miss out. Most new developments are fully­integrated and mixed­use townships that offer residents a holistic lifestyle.


Aside from the immediate impact of choosing one over the other, experts also say that a long­term plan should be in place ­ as in, a five­ to 10­year horizon on future housing needs that should anticipate children growing up (either needing individual or additional rooms, or moving out eventually); how different features of the home, like staircases, would affect you and your health in the long run; and generally, how compatible your home will still be with your lifestyle down the line.


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