Goggle Earth can be valuable free tool in evaluating possible real estate purchases. After we bought our lot in Tigbauan, Iloilo and, we got a new computer, we had to see how the property looked on the fascinating, invaluable and addictive Google Earth program. Google Earth is a free program which provides stunning aerial vistas of the entire globe. You can zoom in on any location. It’s available at http://earth.google.com/ The program is at its best if you have relatively up-to-date computer hardware.
Our Tigbauan land is surrounded on all sides by what seems to be flat rice fields, sort of a tropical Kansas. Fortunately, we have a nice vista of the mountains of Iloilo and Antique Province. One feature of Google Earth is that it shows the elevation of any location that your mouse cursor hovers over. Flooding is a real problem for Iloilo property owners. So, if you locate the property you are considering, you can “cruise” your neighborhood to see if the property you are considering is in a low spot relative to surrounding properties and relative to rivers, fishponds and other water bodies which could present a flood hazard. I’m not sure how accurate the Google Earth elevations are, but they are well worth adding as one more way to investigate property you are consider buying.
So, how did our Tigbauan property fare? It turns out that our property is the lowest spot in our general neighborhood at 38′ or 39′ above sea level. Much of the surrounding terrain is 40′ to 42′ above sea level. Since we are far from any water bodies, we don’t feel we face any real problems but this information will lead us to put a bit more fill on our lot to be sure that it does not continue to the neighborhood’s low spot. So, Google Earth has already helped us with our real estate project!