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I lived in Baybay City for a year, then we (wife, teenage daughter, and I) transferred to Ormoc City 2 years and 3 months ago.
As far as cost of living is concerned - you need to come here and find out for yourself! Are you single, married or otherwise with someone? Expenses will be different based on your situation and many other factors. That being said, here's what I pay:
Kind of Residence:
Rent 4 bedroom, 2 CR house in good neighborhood in northwest part of Ormoc City: P8,500 per month. Some houses cheaper, some more. Rent for 2-3 bedroom apartment anywhere from P6,000 - P15,000.
Is always between P1,900 and P2,600 and we run two aircons at night (but not every night), use two water heaters in the CR's, 3 TV's on occasionally, desktop computer 6-8 hours a day, washing machine two days per week, charge two laptops and 3 cellphones, ref is cold like it should be, and 7 outside lights on when its dark.
Shellane is P800 or so and it lasts us 3-4 months - really.
Our water bill has never been over P90 and we have excellent pressure. No, that's not a typo.
Is P500, Satellite TV is anywhere from P350-P1, 590 per month based on what you want.
Many restaurants in town serving Filipino and Western foods.Two Gaisano malls, one only a year and a half old. Many other places to buy whatever you may need or usually want.
As for golf - the course and facilities are not up to 'par' by any means, but playable. Koreans lease it and could care less if any other foreigners play there. The Filipinos that work there are nice and helpful though. If you are a permanent resident, show your card and *refuse* to pay high tourist rates. Even with that so-called local discount, you will pay P800 for greens fees, about P500 to share a cart, and caddie fee of P300. Long course, which surprises me actually, and the greens are slow and not in great condition. This is current news - last played there 2 months ago.
Ormoc City is not much of a tourist destination, but it *is* a good place for expats to live. We have enjoyed our stay here and have friends and acquaintances among the varied expats and local people. Some of the expats have been here 15-20 years.
Mike Waters Ormoc City, Leyte