Know How about Real Estate in Thailand

Type of Properties for Foreigners

In Thailand, foreigners are not allowed to own or purchase land or landed properties except upon approval by the Board of Investment for individually approved businesses.
However, foreigners can own 100% of a condominium unit and up to 49% of the total floor area of a condo project.

 

Leasehold VS Freehold Property

Leasehold property is usually valid for up to 30 years where the buyer leases the property from the landowner/developer for the said period. Freehold property gives the buyer full ownership rights over the property, after which he can decide to sell or lease the property or to develop the property as long as it follows the guidelines of Thai law.

Most residential developments in Thailand are freehold except projects in some locations such as Ratchadamri or Langsuan where The Crown Property Bureau or other private people own the land.

 

Leasing a Property In Thailand

Most leasing documents in Thailand contain relatively standard terms and conditions. The following terms usually apply to the leasing of residential properties.

 

Lease terms

Residential leases are typically for a term of one year with an option to renew for another corresponding period. However, shorter lease terms are also available for negotiation. Upon renewal, rental is usually based on current market rentals.

 

Furnishings

Most properties for lease are fully furnished with air conditioning, kitchen appliances, and lighting. However, partially furnished apartments can sometimes be pre-arranged with the landlord.

 

Tenancy deposit and rental

Tenants are required to deposit a cash amount that is equivalent to two months’ gross rent, inclusive of service charge. The deposit is refunded without interest to the tenant, or the landlord may use it to offset any payment owing by the tenant when the lease expires. One months’ rent is payable in advance upon signing the rental agreement.

 

Maintenance and service charge

For most condominiums and apartments, the rental usually includes a service charge for the general maintenance of common facilities. Should the management corporation adjust the maintenance fee during the term of your lease, the gross rental may be adjusted according to the provision of your lease terms.   The tenant is usually responsible for all minor repairs and routine maintenance of the premises. The landlord responsibility is the properties’ wear and tear except those resulting from the tenant’s negligence.

 

Public utilities

The tenant is required to pay for public utility companies such as electricity, water, and telephone bills directly to the respective local government authorities.

 

Value added tax (VAT)

Although the lease of residential properties is exempted from the 7% VAT, the lease of any furniture, furnishings, fittings, appliances will be. The tenant will be required to pay VAT only to those landlords who are VAT registered.

Why Using My Services

  1. I am a well-established agent and have an international network of customers.
  2. I am connected to local expertise to professionally handle transactions for foreign buyers.
  3. We can provide after sales services: resell, leasing & rental management.
Know How about Real Estate in Thailand

Your Guide to Purchasing & Leasing Real Estate in Thailand

Payment specifics

It is the Thai government’s policy that foreigners will need to transfer money from overseas to buy a property in Thailand to restrict money laundering.

There are two options to transfer a sum of money to pay for property:

  1. Transfer money to the seller/developer’s account and vendor/developer will organize all appropriate certificate needed later for a transfer process.
  2. Set up a local bank account in Thailand in the name of the buyer and forward money to the buyer’s account. The buyer has to be the beneficiary and obtains the FOREX Transfer Form (Certificate) by the bank for his real estate transaction.
condominium buy guide
Read on how to make it yours!

Foreigners are required to remit at least USD 20,000.00 into Thailand per transfer to receive a FOREX Transfer Form/Certificate (This form will be needed to move the unit to foreign ownership quota & to be able to remit money back out of Thailand if so required in the future).  For amounts of less than this, a bank will issue a confirmation letter instead to present to the Thai Land Department at the time of registering the ownership deed of the condominium.

Requirements & remarks to be noted
  • Currency Conversion to Thai Baht has to be executed in Thailand at the Thai bank and not before the transfer is made into the country.
  • Furthermore, instructions on the transfer must make it clear that “For the purchase of a condominium, unit no.   , level    , at (Condominium Name)”.
  • The name of the remitting person must be identical to the buyer’s name (as indicated in the Selling and Purchasing Agreement).
  • Since there are the remittance fee and conversion rate, so the buyer should pay a little bit more to cover such expenses, and then the surplus amount of each payment will be summed and deducted in the next payment and final payment due upon registration of the ownership of the condominium.
  • After each fund remittance,  you should fax or email the debit advice to the seller/developer, Then, the seller/developer will assist the buyer in tracing the payment and ensure that the receipt of payment will be forwarded to your records without delay.
  • The last partial payment needs to be paid by a cashier’s cheque which will be exchanged with the condominium’s title deed on the same day of transfer of ownership. The set up of a non-resident bank account at a local bank in Thailand is recommended for the purpose of issuing a cheque.
  • If booking fees are paid in Thailand by cash or credit card, these will be included in the “common area fee” on the date of ownership transferred as there is no FOREX Transfer Certificate for this sum.
Places

Bangkok District Guide Overview

Skytrain BTS in Bangkok
Skytrain BTS in Bangkok

Bangkoks districts house a variety of businesses, schools and shops. Each main district has plenty to see and do, but depending on your own personal taste you might prefer certain districts over others. We have complied a guide to each of the main districts within Bangkok. If you are looking to buy a home in Bangkok then please visit our page with a list of homes available at many different prices. Also, if you are foreigner, then please read our guide to buying properties in Thailand.

Siam Square

If you are looking for the modern commercial center of Bangkok, then you should head to Siam Square. Here you will find a wide array of stores to suit everybody from dedicated followers of fashion to computer nerds. Siam Square has a fantastic selection of shopping malls where you can shop until your hearts content. With the Siam Center, Siam Discovery Center, Centerpoint and the World Trade Center there is enough to keep the whole family occupied for hours on end. The area has a number of hotels and restaurants, so after a hard days shopping you can relax with some wonderful cuisine from around the world.

Sukhumvit

The area of Sukhumvit is very popular with expatriates and some of the wealthier locals. The area contains many nightclubs, hotels and restaurants, all of which has helped secure Sukhumvit’s reputation as one of the premier nightspot destinations in the whole of Bangkok.

Silom

The area of Silom is home to Bangkoks thriving business district. Silom also contains a number of embassies and hotels. While it is home to the business district by day, by night the area comes alive with Patpong Night Market.

With the Shangri-La and the Marriott Spa Resort there are also a number of luxurious hotels. If you are interested in antiques then a trip to the River City Shopping Complex is in order.

Phra Nakorn

Phra Nakorn is the most visited destination in Bangkok during the day. This vision of Old Bangkok is home to such wonderful examples of historical architecture such as, Wat Pho and the Grand Palace. If you are new to Thailand and want to experience some of the historical and cultural beauty of Old Bangkok then this is one place that you simply must visit.

Banglampoo & Thewet

Banglampoo & Thewet are backpackers central. Here you’ll find cheap food and a laid-back student atmosphere.

Chinatown

If you crave the hustle and bustle of modern city life then take a trip to Chinatown. Nearby Pahurat is home to Thailands Indian community. With its busy shopping area and bargains, temples and street markets this area is an amazing place to visit and soak up the multicultural atmosphere of Bangkok.

Dusit

bangkok floating market
Bangkok floating market

Dusit is a popular tourist destination with attractions including Vimanmek Palace and Dusit Zoo. Dusit is also the political center of Thailand and is home to the monarchy and a number of political institutions.

Thonburi

Take a trip to Thonburi and you can experience tranquil canal trips on what used to be called the Venice of the East. The district has impressive temples and the Royal Barges Museum.

Pratunam

for the latest designs in clothes and outfits head to Pratunam (market) where you will find hundreds of stores selling retail and wholesale. In this same area make sure to visit also the Baiyoke Tower II & the Victory Monument (the latter one is directly at the BTS skytrain).

Know How about Real Estate in Thailand

Frequently Answered Questions (FAQ) about Real Estate in Thailand

Are there restrictions for foreigners to buy a property in Thailand?

Foreigners can own 100% of a condominium unit and up to 49% of the total floor area of a condominium project.
Proof (Foreign Exchange Transaction Certificate) must be presented to the Department of Lands that funds have been remitted from overseas in foreign currency and correctly recorded as such by a Thai Bank.
However, foreigners are NOT allowed to own/buy land or landed properties. (Exception for Board of Investment approved business).

Should I appoint a lawyer in Thailand to act for me in the purchase of a property?

Usually appointing a lawyer is not necessary.real estate transaction foreigners thailand

Bank financing – is this available to foreigners?

Bank financing is not available to foreigners in Thailand. However, we understand that the Singapore branch of Bangkok Bank and other Singapore banks with a presence in Thailand may provide housing loan for property purchase in Thailand.

Is there capital gains tax or similar on sales of the property?

There is no capital gains tax imposed on the sale of property in Thailand. Gains are typically taxed as income.

Is there a transfer fee levied by the developer on sale?

Taxes involved in a property transaction will include:

  • Transfer Fee of 2% – on the declared sales price or the assessed value whichever is higher.
  • Personal Income Tax – which is withheld at source at progressive rate.
  • Stamp Duty of  0.5% – for properties held for five years or more than five years.
  • Special Business Tax of 3.3% – for properties held for less than five years. If this is paid, stamp duty is waived (vice versa).

What is different about the land area metrics in Thailand?

In Thailand, Land is measured in Rai, Ngan, and Wah.
1 Rai = 4 Ngan (equals 1600 Square meters)
1 Ngan = 100 Wah (equals 400 Square meters)
1 Wah = 4 Square meters
1 Acre = 2.5 Rai
1 Hectare equals 6.25 Rai
Land prices are normally quoted in Thai Baht per Rai or Baht per Wah. Condominium prices are usually expressed in Baht per sqm (square meter).

Personal

Semi-retired and working part time now

Hello, Friends!

I have recently semi-retired and just do some quality part-time work in my real estate service business. To achieve a healthier work-life balance and to enjoy warm temperatures all year long I relocated to Thailand and moved my business along as well. Thailand is an attractive market with an appeal and international customers. From now on I do seasonal smoothies every morning for breakfast, which is quite a vitamin shock, let me say that. And the seafood is delicious especially barbecued; these are real perks, and I enjoy my time. Dear customers, please come along. Get your place in the paradise as well. Just give me a call.

Sincerely Marcia.