Guys I am living in downtown Cebu near the IT park. I'm in Apas near Lahug. We go down to Country Mall for our groceries and it cost me about 300,000.00 Pesos to build our house which is like seventy five hundred USD. My house is 18"x20" and two stories. If your Filipina woman isn't jumping for joy at a house this size then somethings wrong with her.So if you can get the lot, you house will cost your around 8 grand to build, unless you're getting hosed by the local Filipinas construction crew, which is why I bought all the materials and managed it every step of the way myself, from August to the first week of January, essentially six months and I now have my house. Building in the sticks, labor will be cheaper, in the city for a trained Cebuanas carpenter its like 6-7 bucks a day. For a general Filipinas laborer maybe 5 but construction materials will be more expensive due to shipping costs.
Filipinas want a nice caring person who will love them, just the same as anyone else.
So without a rent or house payment (FYI same Filipinas neighborhood, same size house is 10K in pesos = 250USD per month in rent), I am able to live on $850.00 USD per month and that includes sending my Filipinas wife to nursing school full time, at Cebu Doctor's University, the premier University on the Cebuanas Island when it comes to Medical Degrees that transfer to the USA. Travel expenses, food, uniforms, books, etc. $850.00 does my whole shebang. That's for me, my wife, and two kids, one of which is old enough to go to pre-school, which means we're still buying diapers.
Without the nursing school I'd be back down to $500.00 a month, living here in a Cebuanas city, like Cebu with 1 million inhabitants. Throw back in a rental bill if I didn't own my own home and I'm right back up to the $850.00. Now, is this eating out every night at the restaurant, nope. Is this running around everywhere on a vacation budget, nope. Do I get meat and pasta and other American food whenever I get tired of rice and noodles, and their dried fish, yep. We've got power and internet, running water and a phone, yes sir. I am free to go to the theater every week or two if I want and stay up on all the new movies I'm interested in.
If I was willing to live in the sticks, boys, this would be even cheaper. The city boys among us might not be able to hack it, the thought of their only pair of designer shoes getting dirty and no place to purchase a new set might be too much for them to bear. But for those of us from the country, well heading out into the province (what they call the countryside here) might just be the way to shave a few Nickles off the bottom line and at the same time start our brand new 15 year retirement plan. Which is called buying a couple hectares of raw land, building a house and starting your very own tree farm.
The Filipino culture here is very welcoming to foreigners. The Filipinas love us, because they think we're all rich. One thing is certain we're all bringing money to their country. Filipino culture is also something else to experience, top ten in the world happiness index and top ten in the world corruption index. Most times you can pay extra to jump to the head of the Filipinas line. On the other hand hold onto your seat belts. The driving here is enough to set your teeth on edge and Filipinas parties, meetings and any other thing in this country with a time table, will start 30 minutes to two hours after the official set in stone starting
This is just the way of the Filipino culture. Both at its best and at its worst. If you've got a Filipina woman, I have to tell you, not only is she a Filipina woman (with all the extra time that entails) but she's been long steeped in Filipino Culture. She might not be salvageable on the 'getting there on time' front. Filipino culture is an easy comes, easy goes one and that includes road driving and getting to places on time. Your Filipina woman will try her hardest but it takes years to train that out of them. Filipino religion on the other hand is very Christian, very catholic, and very amenable to foreigners from the USA. I have to say that Filipino religion is one of the perks. Most Filipino women genuinely believe in god and family and all that.
In short its, cheap, cheap, cheap to live here and the Filipinas people are friendly. You just have to look out for your wallet. After all, repeat after me, its just the Filipino culture. That along with music so loud they blow out the treble cause they like to feel the base thumping in their chest are some of the most frustrating parts of living in this country.