Cost of Living for Expat Family in the Philippines 2013

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We are a family of two (plus four dogs) living in our own home on Panay Island, Philippines, hence there is no rental expense.  However there are expenses related to home ownership such as labor and materials for maintenance and property taxes (about $100).  These expenses are ANNUAL, not monthly.

Auto                                                    $1,324.50 (tires, fuel, maintenance, insurance)

Bank Charge                                       $51.45

Books, Magazines Newspapers          $466.63

Charity                                                 $443.02

Clothing                                              $252.36

Computer                                            $1,296.51 (new computer)

Dining Out                                           $756.14

Entertainment                                      $39.78

Family Help                                        $1,966.94 (Cash assistance, medical and dental)

Gifts                                                    $116.68

Groceries                                            $3,826.78 (at times we had several guests living with us)

House Furnishings                              $967.44  (hopefully house now fully furnished)

House, Maintenance                           $745.85 (paint, nipa roofing etc.)

Household Supplies                            $327.41 (pots, pans, vacuum cleaner etc)

Immigration                                          $37.21

Insurance, PhilHealth                         $55.81

Labor                                                  $957.26 (maid, house maint, garden)

Medical/Dental                                   $1,910.39 ($1,200 prescription medications)

Misc.                                                   $204.70

Photography                                       $23.00

Postage                                              $238.74 (includes U.S. mailing service)

Tax                                                     $137.05 (Property, withholding)

Transportation                                   $71.06

Travel                                                $572.81 (Boracay for five)

Utilities                                               $2,126.86

Bottled Water                         $184.14

Electric                                   $1198.50

Garbage Removal                   $55.80

Generator Fuel                        $15.12

Internet                                   $307.91

Propane                                   $81.11

Telephone                               $284.28


TOTAL EXPENSES                         $18,916.38 ($1,576.36 per month)


Comments (9) Write a comment

  1. Pingback: Cost of Living Philippines — May 2014

  2. Thank you for the information, not far from my expectation.
    good to know, I spend 40k to 50k pesos for my family in Iloilo monthly, except education.


  3. Hi Bob,

    I noticed you didn’t list home insurance. Is this because you choose to not have it or it isn’t available?


    • No, we do not have homeowner’s insurance and in fact we just dropped collision and comprehensive coverage on our vehicle. This might not be fair but we are deeply dubious of paying for anything for years in the Philippines and actually be able to collect when the need arises. This might be irrational but we have seem so many institutions failing and leaving the beneficiaries high and dry. We feel more comfortable self-insuring.


  4. Bob

    Are you sure your electric bill is 1198.50 USA?
    Respectfully your computation is on dollars only and not peso Filipino.
    Additional not even your retirement pay will be enough, too cover that kind of life style.
    I honestly believe it is a big typo.

    Even do I could type some serious sarcasm, and formulate some hilarious jokes, I wont do it, because we are Net friends.




  5. A most interesting set of figures. As a comparison I reside in Cebu also owning my own house, but with a family of three, + four staff[help/gardner/driver] and two cars. My rounded up break down for comparison is as follows in USD:
    Sundry items:-2,250
    Auto:- 2,700
    Utilities:- 5,750
    Dining/vacation:- 7,500
    Medica[inc ins]l:- 3,200
    Staff:- 3,900
    Total:- 31,400


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