Here are some frequently asked questions about our property. We hope you'll find help here. Didn't find what you were looking for? leave us a message in the Contact Us section.

 

1) What are Thai Laws regarding a land lease?

 

Answer: On the other hand, foreigner can own a lease hold on property for up to 30 years and renew for 30 years.  And the last one the law provides for buying in the name of a Thai spouse name which is the easily way. In case the parties agree for a lease of 60 years (30 years with an option to renew for another 30 years) a deposit payment against the rent payable during the 2nd part of contract shall be made at the sometime as a payment of the 1st half's deposit.

 

 

2) How do I obtain construction permission?

 

Answer: Construction permission may be obtained at the local Administration Organization (Aor Bor Tor), or the Municipal office where your land is located. A building must have the specifications indicated in the permission.

 An engineer shall certify structure plans submitted. 

 

3) Can a foreigner legally own a land in Thailand?

 

Answer:  Under Thai law, a foreigner cannot own a land in Thailand. However, other alternatives exist for a foreigner to acquire land. For more information, please see 'Process to Acquire Land' for more information.

  

 

4) A foreigner cannot have an ownership of land; he/she allowed to

own any structure on such land?

 

Answer: Legally, any building is considered as being a part of land over which such building is constructed. However, a building any be considered as a separate part when it is a tenant of land who builds a building under a leasing agreement. Therefore, a foreigner may own any building on the rented land.

 

5) Can I buy a property in Thailand to my absence?

 

Answer: A person wishing to buy a land, including a foreigner, may purchase a land without being present at the time of registration of ownership at the Land Department. Appointing, by a power of attorney, a lawyer to act on your behalf, shall do this.

 

 

6) How do I obtain construction permission?

 

Answer: Construction permission may be obtained at the local Administration Organization (Aor Bor Tor), or the Municipal office where your land is located. Structure plans submitted shall be certified by an engineer. A building must have the specifications indicated in the permission.

 

7) The land was secretly transferred to a third party without my knowledge, but it was not registered at the Land Department. What are my rights and obligations?

 

Answer: Any unregistered action, with the Land Department, regarding a land is not recognized under Thai Property Law. You are the sole owner of the land.

 

 

 

8) What is measurement using for land in Thailand?

 

Answer: In Thailand, Land is measured in Rai, Ngan and Wah.

1 Rai = 4 Ngan ( or 1,600 Sq.m)

1 Ngan = 100 Wah (or 400 Sq.m)

1 Wah = 4 Sq.m

1 Acre = 2.5 Rai

1 Hectare = 6.25Rai

Land prices are usually expressed in Bath per Rai or Bath per Wah.

Condominium prices are usually expressed in Bath per Sq.m

 

9) Can I legally rent out a property in Thailand?

 

Answer: A foreign-owned property may be rented out. Some banks may allow you to open an account to collect the rents. You, as a non-resident, must be aware that personal income tax shall be deducted from your income earned in Thailand.

 

 10) What is a 'condominium' under Thai Law?

 

Answer: The condominium Act (The Commonly Owned Housing Act of 2522) defines a condominium as a building featuring privately-owned property and common property. The owners of condominium unit own the land through a juristic person.

 

11) How can I buy an apartment, condominium, land or a house in

Thailand?

 

11.1. A new law (Land code Section 96, 2002) allows a foreigner to buy up to one Rai (half an acre) of land to build a house in approved metropolitan areas like Bangkok and Pattaya, providing they also invest at least 40 million Bath for five years in government bonds, recognised property mutual funds or BOI projects. Permission for this must be obtained from the Interior Ministry and the Land department monitors the ownership.

 

11.2. Companies and partnerships also fall under the strict laws on land ownership by foreigners. A foreigner can only own up to 49% of a company and this restricts the ownership of land as well. It is often difficult for even a company with 51/49% ownership unless you use an experienced real estate lawyer.

 

12) Can I get a Mortgage Loan?

 

 - Foreigners could not get a mortgage on property in Thailand. This has changed since August 2005 and some overseas financial institutions have set up shop to offer special deals to foreigners, including direct personal loans to buy property and mortgage loans on property owned by the applicant in Thailand or overseas. These companies will allow you to mortgage your overseas property and bring the money into Thailand to buy property.

It is common for a real estate developer to arrange for his customers to have a financial package from a financial institution. In most real estate development projects a down payment can be made in installments over 10 to 24months. After the down payment has been paid, the sale contract will be made and the balance is paid through a loan which is financed from a financial institution requiring you to mortgage the property with it as collateral against the loan. The Bangkok Bank in Singapore is now providing home loans to approved customers as well.

 

 

13) Can a foreigner legally own a condominium unit in Thailand?

 

Answer: Any non-Thai who has legally entered into Thailand may have a freehold ownership over a condominium unit, constructed on a land of less than 5 Rai, of certain projects in municipal jurisdictions of the Kingdom, such as Bangkok, Pattaya and Phuket. However, condominium units owned by a foreigner shall not exceed 49% of the total space of the condominium project. Other restrictions are applicable.

A non-Thai owner of a freehold condominium unit may transfer a property to other foreigners.

If you wish to buy a condominium in Thailand there are certain points of which you should be aware before choosing your new property:

- How much are monthly maintenance fees and charges?

- How much are sinking funds? (For a use of common parts of condominium)

- Some condominium projects have never been finished for various reasons, so consider carefully before buying.

- If you are interested in A condominium, verify that your ownership of this property would not cause the total of foreign-owned total space of all units to rise more than the 49% allowed.

 

 

 14) What Taxes and Costs are there when foreigners Buy Property?

 

Whenever a property in Thailand is bought and sold there are four taxes that need to be taken into account (many buyers, especially foreigners, fail to take these into account). In 2001 the government reduced the property tax to 0.11 percent to stimulate the property sector. However, in December 2003, the Cabinet issued a resolution on property taxes and from 1st January 2004 the business tax returned to the original 3.3% rate as a result of the recovery of the property sector. Similarly, the transfer returned to the normal rate of 2 percent from the reduced rate of 0.01 percent.

 

The following fees are now payable on property transfers:

14.1. Land registration (Transfer fee) of 2.0% of assessed value of the land.

14.2. Stamp Duty/Fee of 0.5% of the assessed value or the sale price, whichever is higher.

14.3. Specific Business Tax of 3.3% of the assessed value or the sale price, whichever is higher. This will be applied to all sales by companies and to any private sales that occur within 5 years of the date of purchase.

14.4. Income Tax, this is calculated on a very complex formula based on the assessed value of the property, the length of time owned and the applicable personal income tax rate, in practice, this will work out to less than 2% of the price for low to medium value properties and up to 3% for higher value properties.

Because of the local system of taxing property on an arbitrary assessed value as determined by the Land Department, rather than true market value, these taxes could amount to a considerable percentage of the purchase price. Therefore, if you haven't determined during the negotiations that the seller will pay the taxes upon transfer, you could get a nasty shock when a tax bill arrives, often some two or three months after the sale is completed. As in all business transactions anywhere, caveat emptor (buyer beware) rules. There are no set rules on who pays for which taxes and it is just another part of the bargaining process, make sure you discuss it with the agent and your own lawyer.

 

15) If I want to keep a property in Thailand, what are the taxes and fees on a sale of property in Thailand? By what means should I transfer my monies out of Thailand?

 

Answer: A person earning money from selling property in Thailand is taxed a withholding tax (from 0 to 37%), a specific business tax of 3.3% of the appraised price or the purchase price, whichever is higher, must be paid in case that a buyer has a property in his possession for less than 5 years. A fee of transfer of ownership is 2% of the appraised price. A government stamp must be paid only when a specific business tax is not applicable.

 

As regards to transferring monies out of Thailand, you must bring your bank account documents and passport to a bank to arrange a transfer. A transfer of more than $20,000 USD must be informed to the Bank of Thailand. A transfer of more than 2,000,000 baht must be informed to the Anti-Money-Laundering Office.

 

 

 

 

16) Can you give me practical advice on the best way to buy property?

 

16.1. Company Ownership: We recommend setting up a company when buying a house. Land or other property that is not a condominium. Our lawyers can help you do this and you control the property without interference from your nominee Thai partners

 

16.2. Nominee: You can nominate a Thai to own the property for you. Definitely not recommended.

 

 

16.3. Leasehold: Thai law allows a maximum lease period of 30 years, with the possibility to extend for a further 30+30 years. At the end of each term, both parties must register the renewal with the Land Department and pay government fees, including stamp duty. This gives the lessee 'ownership' of the land. The downside is that the Lessor may not wish to renew, or the law may change to your detriment in the future. Any capital you invest into leased property is therefore liable to be lost. In addition, leased land is not easy to trade.

 

16.4. Nominee: You can nominate a Thai to own the property for you. Definitely not recommended.

 

16.5. Nominee with a mortgage: You can lend the price of the property to a Thai under a legally executed mortgage or loan agreement. There is a small fee payable at the Land office to register it. The advantage to this is that the nominee cannot sell the property until the mortgage or loan has been repaid in full. Our lawyers will also set up a Last Will & Testament when they set up this type of transaction so that if the foreigner dies first the mortgage or loan is discharged in full and the Thai can inherit the property. If the Thai nominee dies first the foreigner can inherit the land, but must sell it to a Thai within 12 months.

 

16.6. Freehold: Foreigners can buy and own condominiums freehold, giving you full ownership rights to buy, sell, trade and bequeath your condominium. However, the law states that foreigners may only own up to 49% of any condominium building. So make sure your lawyer checks this before buying a property. The seller must also provide a document from the Juristic management office stating that the condominium is fee from all debts.

 

 

17) My wife is a Thai National, can she own land?

 

Before 1998 any Thai women who married a foreigner would lose her right to purchase land on Thai land. She could still retain land that she owned before marrying the foreigner. The recent (1999) Ministerial regulation now allows Thai nationals married to foreigners the right to purchase land, but the Thai spouse must prove that the money used in the purchase of freehold land is legally solely theirs with no foreign claim to it. This is usually achieved by the foreign spouse signing a declaration stating that the funds used for the purchase belonged to the Thai spouse before the marriage and beyond this claim.

 

18) What is the difference between a Lease and Leasehold?

 

When you rent an apartment, you sign a Lease. Typically, a lease is for a minimum 12 month in Thailand, although some landlords may consider a shorter or longer term. When you sign a lease you are required to pay a 2-month deposit, which is refundable when you move out, less any charges for damage to the property.

There are 2 types of Land Title Deed: Freehold and Leasehold means that the buyer is only leasing the property from the land owner for a predetermined period of time. Thai low stipulates that a property sold with a Leasehold title deed is only valid for up to 30 years. Renewal for a further 30 years is at the discretion of the lease holder (land owner). The property owner may also sell their property with a leasehold title deed. These are the conditions in operation today (2005), but they may change at any time in the future. Obviously, buying leasehold property has its drawbacks.

A Freehold Land Title Deed, on the other hand, gives full ownership rights to purchasers. Under this law foreigners may own a condominium freehold with full rights of ownership. You should always consult a qualified real estate lawyer before signing any purchase agreement.

 

 

 

19) What about land appraisals & valuations?

 

Finding the exact appraisal price for land is difficult since there are generally three different appraisal rates; the government rate, the appraisal company's rate and the rate, which is considered to be the fair market value of the land. Over the last few years all of the rates have begun to come closer together.

 

 

 

20) Are there property taxes in Thailand?

 

There are no property taxes as such that are exactly equivalent to the property taxes in the West. But the most comparable taxes on properties are the Land Tax and the Structures Usage Tax. The Land Tax levied on land is so miniscule that in practice the body charged to collect it rarely bothers to do so. And if they do, they usually wait several years until the amount accumulates. The second tax, the Structures Usage Tax, relates to buildings. It is collected by the municipal office or district office and is only applied to properties used for commercial purpose.

 

 

 

 

21) If Foreigners buy property and want to live in Thailand, how they are doing?

 

You can apply for a visa depending on the type of residency laws you would like to stay here under. For example, if you plan to buy a property and run a business you can apply for a business visa, or if you plan to retire you can apply for a retirement visa. The answers to this question are far too complex to go into here. We recommend you talk to your lawyer about this before buying any property.

 

\n This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 106 29 14923 14.0