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Zonal Value and Market Value

In the Philippines, understanding the zonal value and market value of real properties is crucial for a variety of reasons, including taxation, real estate transactions, and investment analysis. These values are determined by different methods and serve different purposes.

Zonal Value

Definition: The zonal value, established by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), is the assigned value per square meter of a specific area or zone. This value is used primarily for calculating taxes on real estate transactions, such as capital gains tax and documentary stamp tax.

Determination: The BIR sets the zonal value based on various factors, including the property's location, land use, and nearby developments. Zonal values are periodically updated to reflect current market conditions, but they may not always align perfectly with the market value due to the timing of updates and the generalized nature of zonal classifications.

Purpose: The primary purpose of the zonal value is for tax assessment. It ensures that taxes related to real estate transactions are standardized within specific zones or areas.

Market Value

Definition: The market value of a property is the price at which it can be bought or sold in a competitive and open market. It reflects the property's current value based on demand, location, size, condition, and other market factors.

Determination: Market value is determined through a comparative analysis of similar properties that have been recently sold in the area, considering factors like property features, location advantages, and current market trends. Real estate appraisers typically conduct this analysis to provide an accurate market value for properties.

Purpose: Market value is used in buying and selling transactions, financing, and investment analysis. It provides buyers, sellers, and financial institutions with an accurate figure to guide negotiations and decision-making processes.

Differences and Applications

While zonal value is used for tax assessment purposes and is determined by the tax authorities, market value is determined by the real estate market's dynamics and is used in transactions, financing, and investment decisions. It's common for the market value to be higher than the zonal value, especially in rapidly developing areas or in markets with high demand for real estate.

Practical Implications

  1. Real Estate Transactions: Buyers and sellers use the market value to negotiate prices, while the zonal value is considered when calculating taxes due on the transaction.

  2. Taxation: Property taxes and transactional taxes are calculated based on the zonal value as specified by the BIR.

  3. Financing: Banks and financial institutions often consider the market value of a property when determining loan amounts for mortgages or real estate financing.


Understanding both zonal and market values is essential for anyone involved in real estate in the Philippines, whether for buying, selling, taxation, or investment purposes. While these values serve different purposes, they are both critical components of the real estate market's framework, affecting decisions and transactions across the sector.

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