FINANCIAL technology (fintech) firm BayaniPay Inc. announced it has partnered with BDO Unibank Inc., SM Development Corp. and Ortigas Land Corp., to introduce the real estate payments service of its cross-border payments solution it calls “bills pay.”
With this partnership, overseas Filipinos in the US can now “conveniently and securely acquire and invest in homes and properties in the Philippines,” the firm said in a document.
“We see a huge potential in this highly untapped market, which is marked by several barriers for overseas Filipinos. These partnerships allow us to plug the gap in cross-border payments for the real estate investment market worth P1 trillion,” BayaniPay CEO Winston Damarillo said during a roundtable discussion last Wednesday.
Citing data from the World Bank, Damarillo said a big chunk—as much as 60 percent—of remittances from overseas Filipinos are allotted to investments.
“It is estimated that roughly P1 trillion of properties are sold every year and 40 percent of that P1 trillion is sold to overseas Filipinos and half of that is in the US,” he explained.
Latest data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed that annual revenues of the real estate market in the Philippines were at P1 trillion as of 2019.
“Our partnerships with key industry leaders enable Filipino immigrants to conveniently pay their property investments in the Philippines at zero transaction fees and with competitive exchange rates,” Damarillo said. “We are making it easier for Filipinos to reinvest back to the Philippines.”
Help in recovery
THE service offers customers the benefits of monthly auto debit and paying using an eligible funding source so they no longer have to open a separate bank account in the Philippines.
With its payments solution, BayaniPay allows real estate developers collect, automate and reconcile payments with ease through a custom dashboard, a document from the firm read.
“Our partnership with BayaniPay bolsters our continuing effort to provide value to Filipinos in the US and help them experience living the good life,” SMDC President Jose Mari H. Banzon said during the briefing. “That also means giving them innovative solutions that make the purchase of their properties easy and worry-free, especially now that the real estate industry is expected to boom.”
Ortigas Land International Marketing Director Arles Montefalcon II said they see the partnership as supporting the recovery of the real estate market this year and beyond.
“Our partnership with BayaniPay enables us to leverage new technologies to provide our customers in the US greater value for their investments,” he said.
Damarillo estimates that overseas Filipinos remit as much as 14 times per year to the Philippines. Payments for their investments in real estate are separate transactions that amount, ranging between $350 a month to $2,000 a month, depending on the size of their property.