Buying a House
Foreigners can buy a house in Thailand, but it is not as easy as buying a condominium. Many of the steps are the same but not all of them. Foreigners can buy a house but not the land the house sits on. However, there are Legal ways to work around this detail where you can purchase the land AND the house. Chiang Mai Lanna House can help you Buy the House of your Dreams or, if you prefer, purchase land and help you Build Your Dream House.
Chiang Mai Lanna House has assisted almost a Hundred Foreigners to buy property. With our Experienced Realtors and our team of Lawyers, it is no problem. We can help you develop a plan that suits your wishes.
There are several Phases which you may need to address in order to purchase Land in Chiang Mai. We hope this list is of assistance. We at Chiang Mai Lanna House are eager to discuss these Phases with you and to Assist you at every Phase.
Phase 1 – Prepare To Settle Down In Chiang Mai
If you need to Sell Property in your Home Country prior to having the Resources to Purchase Land in Chiang Mai, this process should be completed prior to starting these Phases. You need to have ALL your Resources available prior to taking the following Phases.
Phase 2 – Determine The Method For Title Naming
Foreigners cannot buy Land directly. There are several ways around this.
The Professionals at Chiang Mai Lanna House can help you determine which of the following methods you can use to Purchase Land in Chiang Mai:
One method of Buying Land is to purchase it in the name of a Thai Spouse, Thai friend or a Thai Business who will do this for you for a Yearly Fee. The Foreigner is required to sign a Declaration that the Property was Purchased with Funds belonging to the Thai. The Foreigner waives any Right at all to Ownership of the Property. The thing to be aware of if you do this, you are basically giving the money to purchase the Land and hoping they don’t remove you when you are no longer friends. Sometimes this method does not work out well.
It is possible to have your Thai partner’s name on this document as owner, with your name also registered as mortgagor. This means that the Land cannot be sold without your consent.
You can also use a Thai Nominee to purchase a property and have a 30 year renewal options Lease from the Thai Owner. The Lease can extended by two further periods, of up to 30 years; giving a Maximum Contract Period of 90 years. All Leases of 3 years or more must be Registered with the Local Authority and are liable to a Registration Fee and Stamp Duty (based on a percentage of the Total Lease Value).
Foreign leaseholders may also have drafted into the contract the right to acquire the freehold of the property in the event of a suitable change in the law in respect of foreign ownership rights. The one drawback of a lease is that while the parties can contractually agree to renewals, the renewal cannot be registered until commencement of the new term and in the event of the lessor selling / transferring the freehold, the new owner is not bound by the original contracts. This problem may be avoided by Prepaying for all Renewals.
Usufruct Interest (sidhi-kep-kin) gives a Foreigner temporary ownership rights to things in Thailand. Usufruct is limited to a 30 year maximum period; like leases, the agreement can be successively renewed, however. In contrast to a Lease, a Usufruct interest can be sold or transferred, although it expires upon the death of the holder of the Usufruct and therefore cannot be inherited.
The limited Liability Company is the most popular form of Land Purchasing as the Articles of the Association can be varied to allow greater protection for foreign minority shareholders. The recommended foreigner ownership share in this case is 39 percent, but with changes to the Articles of Association, the foreigner can be the only active director of the company.
All these choices can be discussed with an experienced Chiang Mai Real Estate Opportunities Real Estate Agent and a Lawyer that we can recommend.
If you invest 40 Million Baht or more in Thailand, a Foreigner can purchase Property, of not more than 1 rai, for Residential Use Only.
Phase 3 – Get Pre-Approved For A Home Loan
Chiang Mai Lanna House can help you verify with several Banks or Lending Institutions to ensure the amount you will be able to Finance. If you are paying Cash, you can skip this Phase.
Most Properties are Purchased using a Mortgage. A Mortgage is a Loan secured against all or part of the value of a Property. The Mortgage provider pays the seller for the Real Estate and YOU make regular Payments until the Load is Paid. Most Mortgages are for 25 years but this is Negotiable.
Property Financing of up to 60% of the Purchase Price is available to Foreigners.
There are many sources of Mortgages in Chiang Mai. Please contact your Chiang Mai Real Estate Opportunities Agent.
Phase 4 – Find The Perfect Location
Our Real Estate Professionals at Chiang Mai Lanna House can help you find the perfect location for Buying a House, Buying Land for a House, Buying Land for a Business, Buying Land for a Resort / Spa, Buying Land for an Investment.
When considering the Location, you may want to consider the following:
- Shopping Centers
- Local Convenience Stores
- Public Transport
- Access to Major Road Links
- Access to Your Work Place
- Schools and Colleges
- Golf Courses
- Swimming Pool
- Sporting Facilities
- Entertainment Facilities
- Quiet Secluded Area
Type of Home
- House - detached, semi-detached, terraced, shophouse, townhouse.
- Condominium or Apartment.
- Land - Plot for building on either now or in the future.
- New home or a resale
- Ready to move in or in need of renovation
- Number of bedrooms
- Number of bathrooms
- Number of reception rooms
- Terrace, yard, courtyard or balcony
- Garden - land size
- Garage, under cover or off-road parking
- Aspect - North, South, East or West Facing
- Views - Beachfront, Cityscape, Countryside, Sea, Mountain
- Privacy and security
- Access roads to your house or land plot - if they are not there you will have to pay for a new access road.
- Water - Mains water and supplementary storage facilities, cleanliness of mains water, it may not be useable.
- Hot water facilities - nearly all in Thailand are instant and not storage.
- Electricity - Mains connection, you may have to pay to extend the mains to your property. Backup generators for condominium blocks
- Pest Control - localized spraying and flywire screens on windows
- Swimming pool
- Cable or Satellite TV
- Internet Access
- Air Conditioning
Once you have found the right piece of Real Estate, you can move to the next Phase.
Phase 5 – Determine the Title of the Land
The Title is the means of Identifying WHO owns the Land. There are several types of Titles based on how well Surveyed the Land is. Please read about this in Thailand Land Title Deeds.
Phase 6 – Negotiate The Price
Your Real Estate Professional at Chiang Mai Lanna House can help you to Negotiate your Price. It is considered Polite to Dicker over the price of Land that you want to Buy. Never accept the Asking Price – this is only the Opening Bid in the Negotiations. If you can’t agree on the Price, Table an Offer that is what you are happy to pay and leave the Negotiations. No one will take Offense.
Phase 7 – Make An Offer
May we suggest that you make your Offer through your Chiang Mai Lanna House Realtor. We may be able to help with the Negotiations and prevent any difficulties from ruining the deal. There are several ways to make an Offer. We can reduce the chances of the deal not going through because of any Cultural / Language Difficulties.
We will work with the Owner to get an Agreement that both the Buyer and Seller are happy with.
Phase 8 – Documenting An Agreement
When you are close to agreeing on the Price, this may be a good time to have a Face-To-Face meeting between the Buyer and Seller. Your Real Estate Professional at Chiang Mai Lanna House can arrange any Meetings that you wish or we can handle the entire Negotiations / Offer / Agreement paperwork ourselves. We can provide Translations services between English and Thai or any other Language you desire. If you choose, Chiang Mai Lanna House can make the Final Offer and Documenting the Agreement for you.
Phase 9 – Closing The Deal With A Deposit
When a final Price has been agreed to, you need to hold the Property for Yourself with a Deposit. A Deposit is usually 3% - 5% of the Agreed Price. (You may be able to Negotiate this slightly.) The Details will be documented in a Contract which are signed by both the Buyer and the Owner. Your Real Estate Professional at Chiang Mai Lanna House can arrange this for you.
Phase 10 – Writing A Contract
The Contract should contain the following to ensure they are Contractually Bound:
Identification of the Property
Agreed Price and Date of Agreement
Deposit Amount and Date of Payment
Mode of Deposit Payment
The Contract Signing should be performed with both your Chiang Mai Lanna House Realtor and your Lawyer present to protect both our interests and the interests of the Buyer and Seller. (Chiang Mai Lanna House can Recommend a Responsible Lawyer for you.)
Phase 11 – Transferring The Title Deeds
For Real Estate to Legally change Owners, the Chiang Mai Land Offices must approve the deal. The Government Legal Representatives will Transfer the Land in the Presence of both the Buyer and the Seller. May we suggest that your Chiang Mai Lanna House Realtor Accompany you to the Land Offices so that we can Assist with any last minute Details or Translations. Remember, all Documents will be in Thai. We at Chiang Mai Lanna House want everything to go well for you.
If you have any questions about this process, please contact us at Chiang Mai Lanna House.