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  • I'm Thinking Of Getting A Housing Loan. What Terms Should I Look For?

    Our expert gives sound advice on how to manage your finances
    by Lei Dimarucut-Sison .
I'm Thinking Of Getting A Housing Loan. What Terms Should I Look For?
PHOTO BY @KittisakJirasittichai/iStock
  • We all have goals and dreams for our families, among them: purchasing a car, getting a house and lot, or building a home we can call our own. These big-ticket items often necessitate that we take out a loan from a financial institution. When reviewing the terms and conditions, what are the most important things to consider? Entrepreneur and financial guru Francisco J. Colayco gives us the lowdown. 

    Best housing loan

    Q: “I’m thinking of getting a housing loan to help out with our house payments. What terms should I look out for?”

    A: From your question, I understand that you already have a housing loan, which you want to increase. Loan terms are basically related to the loan amount, the number of years, and the interest rate. How much can you afford to pay for your housing loan amortization every month? Once you’ve determined this, you can work backwards and compute the loan you can afford. You need to make an assumption on the interest rate, and this will depend on the institution you borrow from. Usually, the lowest rates are loans from PAG-IBIG Fund, ranging from 6 to 10% per annum. 


    Since you already have an existing housing loan, you need to check with your present loan provider if they can increase your loan. If not, you could offer other assets as additional collateral. If your current lender is still not agreeable to increasing your loan, you may be able to find a new lender to replace your existing creditor. Other financial institutions may have different loan policies, which may get you a higher loan amount than your existing loan. 

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    Accountant needed for small business

    Q: “I’m a small business owner and I need an accountant. Where do I begin to look for one?”

    A: If your business is a corporation, you will have to produce audited financial reports every year. The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) will likewise require annual financial statements for payment of taxes. Managing and keeping financial records are thus critical functions in any business, and an accountant plays a big role. 


    There are three functions related to accounting. The first is bookkeeping, which can be covered by computer accounting software. The second is submitting reports to management, most of which can also be prepared using computer accounting software. The third is conducting an audit and submitting financial reports to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and other institutions that may require these. 

    Your initial step is to look for a reputable audit firm. An audit firm is like a legal firm in that auditors, like lawyers, should keep all information confidential and protect your businesses. As a general rule, choose an audit firm that you personally know or that is highly recommended by somebody you trust. Your audit firm will be your best adviser when it comes to how your accounting should be organized. The firm will do the required audit and financial reports, and can even recommend a good bookkeeper. 


    Note that you don’t really need to be an accountant to learn how to use the computer accounting software. If you have a good grasp of the software, you may just need someone to conduct the audit and generate reports. In this case, perhaps the audit firm will be in the best position to recommend the software so that the audit process is better coordinated.

    This was originally published in the October 2015 issue of Good Housekeeping Philippines magazine. Minor edits have been made by the SmartParenting.com.ph editors. 

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