Helpful Tips On Land Registration in the Philippines

  1. The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR). The first stop in the registration process is with the Philippine Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR). The BIR is represented in every city or municipality in the country by a Revenue District Office or Collection Agent. But there are certain cities in Metro Manila (e.g. City of Makati and City of Manila) which have more than one Revenue District Offices covering specific geographical revenue district. It is therefore important to know the Revenue District Office (RDO) or local BIR office which has jurisdiction over your property. Please refer to the Directory of Metro Manila Revenue District Offices.
  2. Other Government Agencies. The other government agencies or offices which you will also be dealing with are the Treasurer's Office, Register of Deeds and Assessor's Office. These agencies have offices in every province, city or town in the country. Most of these government offices or agencies are located in the city or town hall. However in Metro Manila, there are certain Offices of the Registers of Deeds, Assessors' Offices and Treasurers' Offices which are not located in the city or town halls. Please refer to the Directory of Metro Manila Register of Deeds, Directory of Metro Manila Assessors and Directory of Metro Manila Treasurers.
  3. Know Their Location. Know the location or address of the local BIR or RDO which has jurisdiction over your property as well as the locations of the Register of Deeds, Assessor's Office and Treasurer's Office before proceeding to their respective offices.
  4. Bring Required Documents. Make sure to bring the required documents and number of photocopies to avoid delay and higher cost of photocopying near these government agencies. Some of these government offices require other documents in addition to those generally required for a particular transaction so make sure to bring them also.
  5. Requirements on the Deed of Sale. The Deed of Absolute Sale and all its attachments shall be signed by the Sellers, Buyers and witnesses on all pages as required by the Register of Deeds. In case of real property where the Transfer Certificate of Title or Condominium Certificate of title is issued in the name of both spouses, the Deed of Sale or Contract to Sell shall refer to them as Sellers or Buyers and shall sign all pages of the documents and attachments.For example: “Spouses Jose C. Ramirez and Rachel Mendez Ramirez, both of legal age, Filipino citizens and residents of x x x ”If the property is in the name of one of the spouses, the contract may be phrased as follows: â€œJose C. Ramirez, of legal age, Filipino, married to Rachel Mendez Ramirez and a resident of x x x”

    On the signing page of the contract, the wife Rachel Mendez Ramirez shall be one of the signatories as follows: â€œWith My Marital Consent” Rachel Mendez Ramirez She shall also sign all pages of the contract and attachments thereto.

  6. Bring Pens & Calculators. There are documents which you will be required to fill up and sign so make sure to bring ball pens. A calculator will also be helpful if you have one on hand. You can double check the computation made by the employees of these government agencies and offices.
  7. Organize the Documents. If you have a checklist of requirements for each of these government offices, it will be helpful if you can prepare separate folders containing documents each one for BIR, Register of Deeds, Assessor's Office, Treasurer's Office and your own file. Then you can place them inside a plastic envelope. Please refer to the general Checklist of Documentary Requirements by the BIR, Treasurer's Office, Register of Deeds and Assessor's Office.
  8. ONETT of BIR. Some RDOs in Metro Manila have designated officer(s) of the day and table for certain One-Time Transactions {(ONETT) covering transactions subject to Final Capital Gains Tax such as the sale of real property subject to CGT} to take care of your transaction needs and requirements. This set up is doubly helpful in mostly crowded Metro Manila cities as you can go straight to them.
  9. Learn to Compute Taxes & Fees. Computing and knowing your Capital Gains Tax, Documentary Stamp Tax, Transfer Fee, Registration Fee and other required payments in advance will help you determine how much money you need to prepare and the correct amount of taxes and fees you have to pay. Most BIR, Register of Deeds, Treasurer's Office, Assessor's Office and other government agencies accept only cash for payments. Please refer to Real Estate Transaction Taxes for reference and guidance.
  10. Basis of Capital Gains Tax. As the rate of CGT is based on whichever is higher of either the Zonal Value, Fair Market Value or the Gross Selling Price, it is fairly advantageous if you know the Zonal Value or Fair Market Value applicable to your real property. Gross Selling Price is the amount agreed by the parties as consideration for the property and stated in the sale agreement. Zonal Value is the value assigned by the BIR on a particular area based on the study conducted by the BIR. Each property in the country is part of a zone with assigned value determined and established by the BIR. The local BIR or RDO can help you establish the applicable Zonal Value of your property. If the Zonal Value cannot readily be determined from the documents submitted, the BIR requires to submit location plan or vicinity map of the real property. Fair Market Value is prepared and established by the local assessor. You can see the FMV of your land or improvement in the Tax Declaration of the land or improvement.
  11. Save on Taxes. For real estate purchased through bank loans, some creditor banks prepare separate documents for real estate mortgage contract and for promissory note. If these two agreements are required to be registered and annotated at the back of the new Owner's Duplicate Original Copy of the Transfer Certificate of Title or Condominium Certificate of Title, they will be subject to separate DST payments by the BIR and registration fee by the Register of Deeds although they cover only one (1) transaction.It is advisable to include the real estate mortgage and promissory note in one agreement so it will be subject to only one Documentary Stamp Tax and registration fee. If the banks will not agree, request that only the Real Estate Mortgage Agreement be registered for tax purposes. Or you may request the banks to shoulder the cost of DST and registration fee on either the PN or the Real Estate Mortgage Agreement.
  12. Authorized Agent Banks (AABs). Know the locations of the Authorized Agent Banks (AAB) where you need to pay the Capital Gains Tax and Documentary Tax. If you choose Landbank which has normally the closest branch to the BIR or RDO in Metro Manila cities or towns, be prepared to wait longer in doing business. An hour or more of waiting to finish a fairly simple CGT and DST payment transaction is the norm. Also please avoid transaction with Metro Manila Landbank branches on Mondays and Fridays if you can.
  13. Payment with AABs. Make sure to get AAB stamped received copy of the AAB CGT and DST payment forms. You need to submit them to the BIR. Please make extra copy for your own file.
  14. Certificate Authorizing Registration (CAR). The issuance of the Certificate Authorizing Registration (CAR) by the BIR is where delay would normally occur. It is also where demands for payment to facilitate release of CAR take place.

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