There is a sequence in events when buying property in Thailand. Your money would have to come from outside of Thailand and you must remember this as it becomes very important. The sequence is that you will need to first find your property, view your property, complete a due diligence report and then transfer money to Thailand to buy the property.

Finding your property

You will need to find your property while in Thailand or search online for a property that you would like. Buying property in Bangkok, Phuket or buying property in Bangkok can be made easy as they can be found online or in person. Once you find the property you like you will need to view your property in Thailand. It is important to view property before you buy and check the noise levels and also traffic problems that you might have. You will also need to check the zoning of the property as there could be a nightclub next-door or an industrial estate.

Property Liens

You will need to ensure that there are no liens against the property that you are buying. These could be a usufruct registered over the property. This allows someone to live in the condo or house for 30 years and there is also superficies where the house in owned by one person but the buildings are owned by another person. You will need to do a due diligence report on your property before you transfer money or sign a buyer’s agreement.

Condominium Ownership

You will note that foreigners may only hold 49% ownership of the condo units in the block. The remainder of the units have to be owned by locals. These holdings are checked by the Land Department so if you are buying offplan then you will need to tell the property developer that the property will be a foreigner holding so that they keep the ratio legal. Once the property has been checked you will now need to transfer money for the property. Also note that this money has to come from overseas however Foreigners with Permanent Resident status do not have this condition and can use local money for the purchase.

Transferring Money from Abroad

You will need to arrange the money transfer for the property in a very specific manner to buy your condominium in Thailand. You will need to have a “Foreign Exchange Transaction Form” certificate for the transfer process. This will need to show the name of the sender, receiver, amount in foreign currency and local currency plus the purpose for the transfer which is very important. This is done with a T/T (Telegraphic Transfer). Note however that in order to get this certificate the transfer must be more than 50,000 USD. The Land Department would want to see this.

Before you buy any real estate in Thailand it is always best to speak to a property lawyer before you sign or start the money transfer process into Thailand for the property you wish to buy.

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