If you are considering buying land in Thailand, consult us about the complex process of buying land in Thailand. Most expatriates place the land in the name of their Thai girlfriend or spouse without any legal protection in the event of a divorce or dispute happens.
Always ensure that your rights are protected in Thailand and that you do not lose your investment.
Buying land in Thailand
Thailand Real Estate has taken off in the past decade or so with more and more foreigners wishing to live in Thailand and making Thailand their second home. Many wish to own land here but before taking this step it is important to inquire or engage the services of registered lawyers in Thailand and, secondly, reputable estate agents when buying land.
Preparations for Diligent Buyers
- Be aware that many of the problems that do arise from buying land in Thailand can be avoided early on in the property search.
- Thailand Real Estate Outlook – See the outlook for purchase and investment
- Real Estate pitfalls – Top 10 Mistakes people make when buying property in Thailand
- Glossary of Real Estate Terms and Real Estate FAQs – Familiarize yourself with terms and FAQs before diving into search for a specific property in Thailand be it a house, villa or condo in Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket or Hua Hin.
Thailand does not use Western measurements for land. Use our online calculator to Convert Rai and Convert Rai to Square Meters
Option 1: Setting up Your Thai Company
Once you have decided which land you are going to purchase, always consult a lawyer before signing any documents.
Foreigners may not own land in their name; however their Thai registered company may own the land. There are different forms of business entities in Thailand;
- The most commonly used is a Thai Limited Company. There are certain business registration criteria which must be met when incorporating a limited company.
- The Thailand Amity Treaty is also permits Americans to do business in Thailand, however this type of structure cannot own land.
There are also tax considerations so check the Corporate Tax in Thailand if you are going to do more than own a house or need a Thai Work Permit.
Option 2: Leasehold Agreements
Buying Thai real estate under a leasehold interest is a very popular and preferred way for foreigners to acquire property in Thailand.
Why is it the favored alternative?
- It is simple and straightforward.
- Foreigners can obtain full interest on a lease in Thailand throughout the specified lease term.
- This is preferred over purchasing through a limited company where you have several shareholders who may have interests that are different from yours.
- You can transfer the leasehold interest or even sell it the same as you would for any other freehold title conveyance in Thailand.
- The maximum lease term is 30 years.
An option to renew will not be automatic and an additional 30 year periods will depend on careful drafting and discretion of the Registrar at the Land Office.
Option 3: Marrying a Thai
A foreigner can buy land in Thailand if he is married to a Thai however there are limitations as follows:
- As the non-Thai spouse, you need to state that you have no rights over the land; effectively waiving your rights to claim the property.
- The property, though purchased by you, cannot be in your name but will have to be in the Thai spouse.
- The married couple may be asked to sign declarations at the Land Department stating that the funds used are the separate property of the Thai spouse.
- Problems may still arise during a divorce case. Proving that the land is marital property will be difficult.
There are basic guidelines that the law provides in the management of matrimonial assets and in this case, a skilfully drafted prenuptial agreement may help to minimize your risks as the non-Thai spouse.
Do Property Services
For purchasers, we would do a title search and review the contracts before you sign it. For sellers, we can draft your contract and negotiate with the purchaser.
For our services, check the Property Services Section of our site