Hi everyone. Nick here. As a specialist in helping international buyers find and acquire real estate in the Philippines, I get faced with a lot of unique scenarios. I get everything from questions about who’s eligible to purchase land versus a condo, all the way to even helping international clients with obtaining their residency. With the Philippine real estate market continuing on it’s climb, the spread of globalization and the continued rapid growth of the internet, there are a ton of driving factors that have and are, continuing to create a huge demand of foreigners buying Philippine property.
It can get very complicated and there are a lot of legal implications though. All of which, depend on what country your client is from.
Why is this important to real estate agents, brokers and developers in the Philippines?
Well, it’s all about knowing your customer and creating value in the relationship with you, right?
By understanding your target audience, you’ll get to know their needs intimately and provide better services and become their trusted advisor, as well as a customer for life.
Today, we’re going to focus on “the basics” of how to help real estate customers obtain a Special Philippines Exclusive Retirement Visa (SRRV).
What is an SRRV?
The SRRV was created by the Philippines Retirement Authority (PRA) as a way of getting more expats to retire in the Philippines and spend their income and living expenses in the Philippines rather that their current country that they reside in which has become very attractive for overseas Fil-Am citizens.
For as little as $10,000 US dollars, someone can obtain an SRRV with the major benefit that you pay no tax on all your income generated outside of the Philippines. In essence, you become a resident of the Philippines and cease to pay tax in your original country of residency. However, if you’re a USA citizen, I’m afraid the IRS isn’t as generous as other countries. The USA IRS does not accept non-resident status the standard benefits to US citizens is not as great as it is for UK or EU citizens or even Japanese for that matter. But, the US Government does give you a very healthy overseas living allowance before you have to pay tax so it can still be advantageous for some.
Besides the amazing tax break there are other benefits with being able to have your pension paid into the Philippines and the new UK pension laws make this a very attractive option for some. Each country will have their own rules and regulations but I understand that there are many similar benefits for most other EU Nationals.
When deciding on what type of SRRV is best, the one major question you need to ask yourself is do you want or intend to work or set up a business in the Philippines? If the answer to that question is a “yes”, you will need an SRRV that allows you to do this as the standard SRRV does not allow you to work. So, it’s important to think this through at the start.
The process is relatively simple but it does take time to process and it doesn’t stop you from living in the Philippines on a tourist visa whilst this is being done. The only issue is, you will have to update your tourist visa every 60 days which can be done at your local immigration office.
If you’re married to a Filipino then you can obtain all these benefits under a Section 13A Visa. The first year is probationary and after that, it becomes permanent. However, for those not already or not wanting to get married to a Filipino, the SRRV offers you all those benefits at a relatively small cost. If you’re fortunate enough to have income from overseas then the tax benefits are probably a huge incentive for you to take advantage of the SRRV.
As mentioned already, there are many forms of the SRRV and each person’s situation could be unique so just know that this article is more of a straightforward and simple way to understand the basics. At Philippines Exclusive Hot Properties, we’re a full-service real estate company run by Expats for Expats who specialize in helping offshore investors. If you need more coaching or advice, feel free to ask your questions at the bottom of this blog.
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