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Feature: BFS helps families secure their homes

Editor's Note: The following article was submitted by Atty. Gerrard Paez of Bahay Financial Services (BFS) Corporate Communications, in response to continuing complaints from Davao homeowners affected by the National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation (NHMFC) deal with Balikatan Housing Finance, Inc. (BHFI). See related story.)

When Elma Garcia, a native of Malinao, Aklan, vacationed in Panabo City in 1981, little did she know that its beauty would lure her into staying for good. Falling in love with its clean air and abundant fruits and vegetables, she decided to make it her new home.

As luck, or fate, would have it, she married one of Panabo's sons, and they raised two beautiful children together.

An elated Elma Garcia and her husband Laureano receive their Transfer Certificate of Title from Balikatan Housing Finance's service provider, Bahay Financial Services. (BFS)

One of the gateways to Mindanao, Panabo derives its name from the word "pana-sa-boboy", the bow and arrow used by the town's first settlers, the Aetas, for hunting. By virtue of Republic Act No. 9015, and ratified through a plebiscite in March 2001, it became a component City of Davao Del Norte.


Although life was easy in Panabo, with both Elma and her husband Laureano having stable jobs, the couple nevertheless had difficulty in maintaining their payments for a housing loan which they took out from the National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation (NHMFC) in 1989. Their capacity to pay was severely affected by the family's increasing expenses and the demands of sending two children to private schools. With uneasiness over their situation, Elma began to fear that they might lose their home.

Help and Options

But fate again worked its wonders when Elma learned that the servicing of her account has been transferred to Bahay Financial Services (BFS), an asset management and mortgage servicing company that was engaged to manage a portfolio of more than 52,000 residential mortgage loans transferred from the NHMFC to Balikatan Housing Finance, Inc. Elma learned that through BFS, borrowers like her are afforded the opportunity to settle long-outstanding obligations with fair and reasonable terms.

The Outcome

In a few short weeks of communicating via phone and fax with BFS at its office in Makati City, Elma and Laureano were able to avail themselves of BFS' full loan settlement program. It was a joyous occasion for the couple when they flew to Manila to personally receive their home's Transfer Certificate of Title. With almost disbelief in her voice, Elma gleefully recounted her experience. "I thought I was dreaming. I cannot believe that I am actually holding the Title of the house which had been part of my life since I started my own family", she said.

Elma's story is one of inspiration to her family members, friends and other BFS account holders with whom she eagerly shares her story. Through a beneficial program that takes her difficult circumstances into consideration, Elma is now more secure in continuing her love affair with Panabo. (BFS) [top]

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