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Gandang Smile

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Gandang Smile last won the day on May 25

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About Gandang Smile

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  • Birthday 06/08/1974

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    Pasig City, Manila
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    Software and IT, reading, hiking, good cuisine

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  1. Not sure it's because they want to sell more 5G phones. I have a Samsung Galaxy S21, initially I wanted to go for a 4G phone as I wasn't sure about the speed of the 5G network here. Don't regret paying the little extra.
  2. I am leaving Davao tomorrow since MECQ makes it a lot harder to get the suppliers and contractors in and finish off the condo fitout. Back to Manila for a few weeks, then here some time in July. I have been using this new offer from Smart, Unli5G. Unlimited 5G data for a week for only P299. Here in Davao (Bajada) it's been consistently registering 200 Mbit/s and higher downlink and 30 Mbit/s and higher on the up. I know for sure 5G is not as fast, not everywhere at least, in Italy and not even in the UK. With the equivalent of P1,200 a month, one has a mobile connection to rival the
  3. Agree, still a hefty hike for intermediary services! Do you feel that the developer's contribution in terms of project management and QA was worth the markup? One of the things we wish we had during our painful, multi-month and ongoing condo fitout, is the constant supervision from an external person, perhaps a young local architect or engineer (women are the best at that!). Then again, my wife and I concluded that finding a good supervisor would be just as hard as, if not harder than, finding a quality labourer. So we gave up and decided to supervise everything directly.
  4. Apologies, I read incorrectly. I thought 1.5M was the final price to the final Client. 1.5m to 4.8m is a massive hike. As usual, the question is: what is the added value of the developer compared to the building contractor? Even if they did the design, the project management and quality control, a markup of more than 300% is insanity. Little wonder the contractor accepted reluctantly and won't accept similar offers in the future. Even at 4.5m for the construction-complete house, I was referring to the fact that rectification of construction issues (e.g. uneven ceilings, walls, beams. etc.
  5. 1.5m for a cold shell building isn't too bad a price. The problem is: how much of those naked walls and ceilings are ready to be plastered and painted? Making those domed ceilings, those slanted walls and imperfect slabs good might be a massive time waster, as well as an added cost. That is, even before you start decorating and furnishing.
  6. They had a decent construction company. Nowadays having a construction company who can do decent quality without overcharging is almost a miracle.
  7. I noticed Filipino construction contractors like to quote house costs by total package price/sqm. For the typical middle-class family house, 3 small-ish bedrooms, 3 baths, kitchen and living room, maybe extra family room, the size would be around 120/150 sqm and the price would be anything between P25,000 and P35,000/sqm. So that would place your ball park figure for 120 sqm between P3M and P4.2M. As far I (and most of us here) have noticed, the biggest difference in quality is made by the quality of labour and materials available. If you're planning to build outside Leyte, you will be pr
  8. Sure, but perhaps you could explain us your short fuse first ­čĄö
  9. Just in, from Rappler. An outage on a single plant is enough to trigger rotational blackouts.
  10. I think this is the terminology used by the utilities. As it usually happens in the Philippines, it's a lingo meant to hide, not to explain. The general population can interpret whatever they want.
  11. I have been working closely with Aboitiz Power to integrate outage management in the mobile app we are developing, so I have a pretty good idea of what the different terms mean, at least in the context of the utilities they manage (Visayan Electric, Davao Light, Cotabato Light, Subic Enerzone, etc.). In the Philippines, a brownout is a euphemism for a planned, rotational blackout. Utilities have very rarely been able to accommodate the growth in demand with growth in supply (generation), especially in the larger urban areas. A good example is new malls sprouting up and requiring sufficien
  12. On the matter of "when in Rome...", there seems to be quite a thriving market of condos rented as "love nests". Powerful people, usually politicians or entrepreneurs, profess their love to their mistresses by renting a condo unit where they can live and meet their man. Case in point, I heard that the condo I was renting in Davao (Camella Northpoint) before moving to Manila was occupied by one such young lady.
  13. All in all, I think it's one of the worst investments available, unless you buy off-plan and plan to sell higher after completion and maybe after some redevelopment work. In terms of rental yields, I think houses have far better ROI. Here in Davao you can build a cluster of 5 small houses, for a total cost of maybe 5 millions, including land title, and rent them at 15,000 each every month to local families. That would be P900K minus expenses, per year. You would amortize the cost of development in less than 6 years. A studio unit in a decent condo complex would probably cost you more
  14. Hi @GeoffH, Interesting, if sad, story. Is the condo complex you invested in located in CDO? So that would be 2 or 3 years delay, and just to get the basic residential unit. Looks like dressing up the specs and completion dates for a condo is a very common tactic to drive interest and sales. I can see how Davao is plagued by lack of honest and skillful contractors and labourers. I can only imagine how much worse the situation might be in a smaller city, where cost of labour is lower and there is even less incentive for anyone to train and do a decent job. After some initial relu
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