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Safety Outside the Expat Fortresses


Maxheadspace

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I'm just in the process of retiring and moving to the Philippines.  My Filipina wife and I just purchased some farm land in Batangas.  She wants to build a house on the farm property and live there.  Although I would love to live in a house on our farm property, I'm concerned about our safety living outside the confines of gated communities.  How many expats here live in a non-expat, non-gated community?  And those that do, how safe do you feel and to what lengths do you go to secure your home?  As we would build the house from scratch and more-or-less to Western standards, it will definitely stand out among the neighbors.  Not too concerned about our neighbors per se, as they're lovely, friendly people, but I have no reference as to what safe means for an expat in the provinces.  The other option on my mind is to live in the nearby town and just drive out to the farm as needed.  That would require a lot of convincing for my wife.  Would like to get some perspectives from those that have been around a while.  Any thoughts?

Many thanks!

Max

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20 minutes ago, Maxheadspace said:

How many expats here live in a non-expat, non-gated community?  And those that do, how safe do you feel and to what lengths do you go to secure your home?  As we would build the house from scratch and more-or-less to Western standards, it will definitely stand out among the neighbors.

 

Our house is not in a gated community... it is however in a middle class filipino section of a subdivision where the houses are larger.  We have large concrete walls to the rear and the sides of the house (which have broken glass cenmented into the top) and a 2 meter tall metal front fence with a solid gate fitted with padlock.  The car and motorbikes are kept behind the fence.

The windows on the first and second floors have heavy metal security frames (done in a decorative style) and the doors leading to the exterior are solid hardwood with dual heavy duty locks.  The third (attic) floor (which has rooms) does not have the security frames on the windows but getting that high up would be very difficult.

I feel safe walking around the subdivision near the house but it can't hurt to be cautious.

NB... try to take fire exit into consideration when fitting security screens if you fit them.

Edited by GeoffH
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1 minute ago, GeoffH said:

 

Our house is not in a gated community... it is however in a middle class filipino section of a subdivision where the houses are larger.  We have large concrete walls to the rear and the sides of the house (which have broken glass cenmented into the top) and a 2 meter tall metal front fence with a solid gate fitted with padlock.  The car and motorbikes are kept behind the fence.

The windows on the first and second floors have heavy metal security frames (done in a decorative style) and the doors leading to the exterior are solid hardwood with dual heavy duty locks.  The third (attic) floor (which has rooms) does not have the security frames on the windows but getting that high up would be very difficult.

I feel safe walking around the subdivision near the house but it can't hurt to be cautious.

Thanks for the reply.  Yours is kind of the safety measures I'm thinking, but our farm is out of town.  Not totally secluded, as there are neighbors maybe several hundred meters away, but still a bit isolated.  We figure dogs will be an absolute must for out in the yard.

On a side note, Max is my nickname, Jeff is my actual first name.  Everywhere I go when I have to present my personal information, everyone asks if I spell my first name with a G or a J.  My reply has always been that I have never in my life met a Geoff with a G.  Well, here you are!  :biggrin:

Thanks again, Geoff!

 

Max, aka Jeff with a J

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2 minutes ago, Maxheadspace said:

My reply has always been that I have never in my life met a Geoff with a G.  Well, here you are!  :biggrin:

Thanks again, Geoff!

 

Max, aka Jeff with a J

 

I made the mistake of asking my mother, when I was much younger, why she choose to spell my name with a G (it has since caused me a lifetime of misspellings and confusion) she was err... annoyed :whistling:

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23 hours ago, GeoffH said:

* double post *

 

Edited by GeoffH
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Much the same as @GeoffH, our house is secured by brick fences with glass on the top and a very sturdy lockable  metal gate.  Nothing on the windows downstairs as yet, but very solid doors.  It's about 2 hours north of Dumaguete (Guihulngan City) and we're surrounded by the homes of family - a double-edged sword.  It's a smaller town that doesn't even have a Jolibee and I've only ever seen about 4 or 5 other expats there.   Never heard of any crime there to speak of. 

There's always someone home whether it be cousins, nieces/nephews etc that have "just dropped in" for varying periods of time.  

Plans are to build another home in the Dumaguete area that will be fully secured but outside a subdivision.  Toying with the idea of remote cameras that can be hooked into our phones when we're not there but given internet and cell coverage can be sketchy depending on where you are that's something that has to be investigated further.   

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