Solon calls on Pag-IBIG Fund to revise payment guidelines on accumulated premiums during ECQ
Marje Pelayo • April 30, 2020 • 1640
MANILA, Philippines — Pag-IBIG Fund has allowed a 30-day grace period to all its borrowers as a relief measure while the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) is in effect and in compliance with Republic Act 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act of 2020.
But according to the agency’s Vice President for Public Relations and Information Services Group, Atty. Kalin Franco-Garcia, the accumulated amount of premiums must be settled through one-time payment once the ECQ is lifted.
“Pagkatapos ng ECQ sa first working day ay kailangan na po ninyong bayaran ang lahat ng (amount) due habang naka-ECQ ka [After the ECQ, on the first working day you need to settle all unpaid dues while on ECQ],” the Pag-IBIG official said during an interview with UNTV’s public service program, Serbisong Bayanihan.
The show’s host, Kuya Daniel Razon, noted however that while under ECQ, workers are presumed to have no income as jobs were put on hold.
“Kasi po there is a presumption na na-stop ako ng work kaya kung halimbawa, immediately pagbalik magbabayad ako kaagad parang, it defeats the purpose of the Bayanihan Act, right? ” he asked.
To which, Atty. Franco-Garcia argued that it was the reason why Pag-IBIG Fund approved a ‘friendlier’ option for its borrowers.
“That is exactly po ang nakalagay sa Bayanihan Law but nonetheless po that’s why we came up with the moratorium that is friendlier in terms po, payment reprieve,” she said.
In addressing similar concerns, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has directed owners of residential and commercial establishments to also grant a 30-day grace period to their tenants on the duration of the ECQ.
But the accumulated amount of unpaid rent, according to DTI Undersecretary Ruth Castelo, should be paid on a staggered basis within six months.
“Kapag na-lift na po ang ECQ hindi pa sila pwedeng singilin [Once the ECQ is lifted, the tenants cannot be forced to pay yet],” Castello said in an interview on Wednesday (April 29).
“Kapag siningil na sila pwedeng i-divide into six installments ang mga rental na nag-accumulate during the ECQ period [The amount of accumulated rentals within the ECQ period may be divided into six installments]” she added.
Atty. Franco-Garcia explained, however, that should it become difficult for the borrower to pay in full after the ECQ period, he may apply for the 3-month moratorium.
But one of the principal authors of the Law, Bagong Henerasyon Partylist Representative Bernadette Herrera-Dy wants Pag-IBIG Fund to revise its guidelines to clarify the issue.
“Nananawagan ako sa Pag-IBIG Fund. Dapat kayo po ang numero unong nakikisama sa ating mga kababayan. Dahil hindi mo pwedeng i-expect na pagbalik, bibiglain nyo ng 2 months worth ang babayaran nila, 3 months worth. Hindi po yan makatarungan at hindi yan naaayon sa batas na ipinasa natin,” Rep. Herrera-Dy said.
[I am calling on Pag-IBIG Fund. You should be the first to help our people. You cannot expect them to pay the 2-months, 3-months worth of arrears in one full payment. That is injustice and it violates that law that we authored.]
“We’ve asked credit companies to help us. We’ve asked landlords to help us. Tapos kayo pa ang manggigipit sa mamamayang Pilipino [Then here you are adding pressure to Filipinos]. Please don’t do that,” she appealed. – MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)
Pag-IBIG Fund achieved milestones in the first four months of the year as members availed of its voluntary savings program and housing loan program in record numbers despite the ongoing health crisis, top officials of the agency said on June 04.
From January to April, members’ savings under the voluntary Modified Pag-IBIG 2 (MP2) Savings program reached P8.65 billion. On the other hand, home loans released during the period amounted to P27.39 billion, helping 27,041 members realize their dream of homeownership.
“We are happy to report that we were able to achieve two ‘highest-ever’ numbers early on in 2021. The strong showing of our MP2 and housing loan programs is a testament to the trust of Filipino workers in Pag-IBIG Fund. Our members can rest assured that we will continue doing our best, so that we can provide them high earnings on their savings while maintaining the low interest on our loans. These are our contributions to the national government’s efforts towards economic recovery under the lead of President Duterte,” said Secretary Eduardo D. del Rosario of the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) who also chairs the 11-member Pag-IBIG Fund Board of Trustees.
In 2020, members saved P13.3 billion in MP2, growing 11% from the previous year and setting the record for the highest amount saved in one year. Pag-IBIG Fund’s home loans also reached a record-high in December last year when the agency released P12.11 billion, which is the highest amount disbursed in a single month.
Pag-IBIG Fund Chief Executive Officer Acmad Rizaldy P. Moti expressed optimism that the agency’s strong performance will continue throughout the year, especially as the restrictions are being eased to help the economy. He noted that the phenomenal performance of its MP2 last year and the increasing amount of home loans released in the last quarter of 2020 continued until the beginning months of 2021. He said that even amid the ongoing health crisis, MP2 Savings collections in January to April grew 81% while home loan releases rose 64% compared to the same period in 2020.
“Even with the ongoing pandemic, the amount of home loans released and MP2 Savings collections for the first four months of 2021 are not only record-highs but are higher than what we achieved during the same period in 2019, prior to the pandemic. In the case of our MP2 alone, the amount our members voluntarily saved from January to April this year is already equivalent to two-thirds or 65% of the amount saved in MP2 for the whole year of 2020. We thank our members for their continued trust in Pag-IBIG Fund and in choosing to rely on us for their home financing and savings needs. These give us hope that, barring another black swan event, we are on our way to another best year in fulfilling our mandates to Filipino workers here and abroad,” said Moti. (PR)
Pag-IBIG Fund granted socialized home loans to 5,074 members from the minimum-wage and low-income sectors totaling P2.2 billion in the first three months of 2021 despite the continuing pandemic, according to the top executives of the agency.
Socialized home loans make up about 25% of the 20,712 total number of loans financed by the agency in the first quarter of 2021. The amount, meanwhile, is equivalent to 11% of the P20.94 billion it disbursed.
Amid the health crisis, the number of socialized home loans granted grew by 25% from the 4,045 loans extended during the same period last year, while the amount increased by 34%.
“In the wake of the pandemic, Pag-IBIG Fund’s Affordable Housing Program (AHP)has become the means for minimum-wage and other low-income workers to achieve their dream of homeownership,” said Secretary Eduardo D. del Rosario, Chairperson of the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) and the 11-member Pag-IBIG Fund Board of Trustees.
“The program’s lowest rates and longest term allow them to make buying a home within their reach. Offering affordable home financing to our members is our way of adhering to President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s directive to government institutions to provide programs that serve the needs of the underserved sector, especially during these challenging times,” del Rosario added.
With Pag-IBIG Fund’s AHP, members can borrow up to P580,000 to buy socialized house and lot packages, or up to P750,000 for socialized condominium units at a special rate of 3% per annum.
The AHP is specifically made for members earning not more than P15,000 per month within the National Capital Region, and not more than P12,000 per month for members outside of NCR, who intend to buy socialized housing units.
This loan program also features a 100% loan-to-value ratio allowing borrowers to purchase homes without spending for equity.
Pag-IBIG Fund Chief Executive Officer Acmad Rizaldy P. Moti said the agency has been offering the special 3% rate under the AHP since May 2017 and has kept the subsidized rate since, thanks to Pag-IBIG Fund’s tax-exempt status provided under Republic Act No. 9679.
“Because of our Charter, Pag-IBIG Fund can afford to offer the lowest rates for home loans of minimum and low-wage workers. And, with President Duterte recently signing into law the CREATE bill, the tax-exempt status of Pag-IBIG Fund has been maintained. What this means to our members from the minimum-wage and low-income sectors is that they can continue to enjoy these lowest rates,” Moti said.
“To put things into perspective, with our Affordable Housing Program, qualified borrowers will only pay around P2,445 per month for a home loan worth P580,000 – which is almost equivalent to the price of rent. This low amortization allows more of our members to gain homeownership, as we recognize that the home is the safest place to be during these difficult times. We look forward to helping more low-income members become homeowners in the months to come,” he added. (PR)
Pag-IBIG Fund released P20.94 billion in home in the first quarter of 2021 despite the pandemic, an increase of 33% o4 P5.17 billion compared to the P15.77 billion released during the same period in 2020, its top officials announced on April 13.
“We are happy to report that our home loan release in the first three months of 2021 have increased compared to the same period last year. This increase in our home loan release mean that more Filipino workers are being helped by Pag-IBIG Fund to secure their own homes, which is very important at this time of pandemic. We recognize the role we play in helping keep our members safe in their own homes, as we heed President Rodrigo Duterte’s call for government agencies to provide social benefits to more Filipinos, especially during these challenging times,” said Secretary Eduardo D. del Rosario, who heads the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development and the 11-member Pag-IBIG Fund Board of Trustees.
Del Rosario added that the P20.94 billion in home loans during the first quarter of the year enabled 20,712 members to acquire their own homes. Out of the total amount, P2.2 billion were released as socialized home loans for the benefit of 5,074 Pag-IBIG Fund members belonging to the minimum-wage and low-income sectors.
Meanwhile, Pag-IBIG Fund Chief Executive Office Acmad Rizaldy P. Moti noted that even if measured against the period prior to the implementation of community quarantines, there was still an increase in home loans. The agency released P15.49 billion in home loans from January 1 to March 15 this year, an increase of P546.97 million or 3.7% from the P14.94 billion released in the same period in 2020 when strict community quarantines in Metro Manila and other parts of Luzon were yet to be implemented. He further expressed optimism that the numbers will continue to rise, especially as the economy continues to reopen.
“From September to December last year, our home loan released were close to ‘pre-pandemic’ levels. We released more than P6 billion to P7 billion in home loans every month during those months, with December loan releases reaching P12 billion – the highest amount released for a single month in Pag-IBIG Fund’s history. We are glad that our momentum in the last quarter of 2020 carried over to first quarter of 2021, despite the challenges caused by the pandemic. In fact, home loan releases in the first quarter of 2019, which eventually turned out as our best year ever when annual home loan releases amounted to P86.7 billion. We anticipate that our momentum will continue in the succeeding quarters, barring any major catastrophic event, so we help more members become homeowners.” Moti said. (PR)
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