One Year Later: Revisiting Real Estate in Pandemic-Resilient Cities

Last Updated on July 6, 2022 by Lamudi

This post is part of a series revisiting how the pandemic has impacted different markets in the country. Click here to read part one

Results from a Lamudi survey published in its trend report The Outlook by Lamudi: Eager property seekers, diligent brokers and developers raring for change revealed that certain real estate market segments had posted gains in spite of the pandemic.

Analyzing trends spanning the weeks before, during, and after the announcement of an NCR-wide lockdown, Lamudi looked into consumer approaches to budgets and the demand performance of cities, among other property seeker preferences.

The survey data showed that while some markets felt the impact of the pandemic, others saw strong performance. Among last year’s weakened segments was the commercial property sector; however, Lamudi saw demand had bounced back towards the end of the year.

A few high-end metropolitan cities had seen decreased demand at the start of the pandemic, but had shown recovery in certain markets during the second half of the year as technoparks and commercial demand bolstered their performance. At the same time, demand for residential lots emerged from the pandemic onset seemingly unscathed as survey respondents revealed a larger lead share for houses, lots, and apartments.

Demand for six cities in the metro — Manila, Las Pinas, Caloocan, Quezon City, Valenzuela, and Marikina — stayed resilient throughout the lockdowns, posting positive lead growth figures during the assessed period. Purchasing budgets generally remained unchanged.

Let’s take a look at the performance of these cities one year later: 

Demand for residential properties continues to grow

Demand for residential property types soared in 2H2020, with pageviews and leads for houses, condominiums, land, apartments, and foreclosures all sustaining demand from the first half of last year and posting even higher half-on-half growth figures. Lamudi’s trend report, What’s Next? A Forecast on PH’s Residential and Commercial Real Estate in 2021, projected a positive outlook for the residential property segment this year given its recent performance. The report also identified foreclosures as the fastest lead-generating property type in the latter half of last year, having grown by 43% from the first half of 2020.

Sustained positive performance, fringe cities drive growth

In the latter half of 2020, Manila real estate managed to keep demand figures within the positive territory as it attracted 1% more pageviews than it did in the initial half of the year. While the city was one of last year’s better-performing cities, brokers for properties in the area should take extra care towards rebuilding consumer confidence.

Las Pinas continued to grow in terms of both pageviews and leads from the first half to the second half of last year, increasing by 36% and 8% respectively. This was driven by growing demand from young property seekers — students and professionals aged between 18 and 24 had registered 197% more pageviews in 2H2020 than they did in the same period the previous year. 

Quezon City cemented its position as one of the country’s top-performing cities in terms of demand from property seekers, coming out as the city with the highest number of pageviews in the second half of 2020. As consistently one of the most sought-after real estate choices in the country over recent years and having posted positive growth figures from mid-Feb through mid-April last year, Quezon City continued to be a stable choice for real estate investments.

The real estate market in cities along the fringes of the metro appeared resilient amid the beginning of the outbreak last year.  Marikina, Valenzuela, and Caloocan, all located in the northern area of NCR along the borders of Quezon City, posted optimistic growth figures during that time frame in spite of the challenges brought upon by the pandemic. This was sustained in the second half of 2020 as the three cities continued to attract more demand from property seekers: Pageviews for both Marikina and Caloocan increased by 9%, while Valenzuela’s increased by 8%.

Rental listings contributing smaller lead share as property seekers gain confidence to buy again

The Lamudi survey found that property seekers had adopted a more conservative stance during the pandemic outbreak, with buyers contributing a smaller lead share than renters in the immediate weeks following the announcement of the lockdown and overall budgets remaining the same. Data from the second half of the year revealed that investor confidence had begun to recover. Rental properties were no longer the dominant segment; purchase listings had covered the majority of all leads at 57%.


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