For many Filipinos, times seem so hard these days in their homeland. That is why more and more Pinoys try their luck abroad, where the grass is perceived to be greener. They work in foreign lands that promise them the financial freedom that their native country cannot seem to give them. For those who are lucky enough to return to their native land with sufficient money they have accumulated abroad, the first sound investment that would come to mind is an investment in real property. Home ownership is in every responsible Filipino’s wish list.
 
Overseas Investment
But waiting for a good sum of money to pay Spot Cash for a property in the Philippines is not only a good idea, but would also take a long time for most Overseas Filipinos. After all, there are other expenses, family remittances and obligations to take care of also. Wouldn’t it be nice if they can start building their home in the Philippines while they are building their nest of cash overseas? In other words, building a house in the Philippines, without requiring too much upfront cash and pay for it in installments (mortgage amortizations).
 
The Pag-IBIG Overseas Program
To help the Overseas Filipino Workers, along with immigrants and naturalized citizens realize their dream home, the Pag–IBIG Overseas Program (POP) was created. The Pag–IBIG Overseas Program is a voluntary Savings Program, wherein members are given a chance to set aside money for their future housing investments. With the program, members may avail of a housing loan of as much as Php 3,000,000 (at the time of this writing). The Pag-IBIG Overseas Program is open to the following: a). All Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) with valid Visas or Employment Contracts. b). Filipino immigrants and naturalized citizens

Money Talk – Member Contributions
Members of the program are to contribute monthly an amount equal to $US 5, at a minimum. An upgraded membership is required for members, who would like to avail of a higher loan amount.For instance, if a member wishes to avail of a housing loan ranging from P1,500,000 to P1,600,000, he or she will have to contribute monthly an amount equal to the US dollar equivalent of PhP 750 at the point of availing the loan. The upgraded membership contribution will form part of the housing loan monthly amortization.
 
POP As Savings / Investment 
The Pag–IBIG Overseas Program not only serves as the OFW’s aid in fulfilling his dreams of owing a home. It also serves as a savings investment in the mutual fund company, that promises positive gains on the investment money. Note: The Pag-IBIG  is a government controlled Mutual Fund corporation. As a Pag – IBIG Overseas Program member, one is entitled to variable dividends from the excess earnings of the Fund. These dividends are distributed annually to the members and are credited to their Total Accumulated Values (TAV). Members of the program have the option to withdraw their accumulated savings at the end of five (5), ten (10), fifteen (15), or twenty (20) years upon membership. Foreign denomination contributions shall be converted to the Philippine Peso based on the prevailing US dollar exchange rate. As such, withdrawals of savings shall be made in Philippine Peso.
 
Member Benefits
Members of the Pag-IBIG Overseas programs are illegible to the following benefits:
a). Housing Loan
b). Multi-Purpose Loan
c). Dividends

It is good to know that the Pag–IBIG Overseas Program is there to reward the efforts of OFWs through an effective savings and home financing scheme. Somehow, through POP, the OFW’s return to their native land will grant them the freedom that was somewhat denied them in the first place. Indeed, perhaps one’s best investment in life is one’s own home. It reflects one’s status and achievement in life. This is especially true for Overseas Filipino Workers, who take chances and make sacrifices abroad for their future and that of their families.
 


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