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Property guide

Buying a Property in Thailand

Thailand has many different types of properties on offer and what ever your dream home is, you can realize it here if you have all the right paperwork. Prices are a lot cheaper than in Europe or the US but there are a few extra checks you will need to make here as laws and culture will differ to your home country.

The first thing you need to do is obtain the services of a reputable real estate agent or lawyer on your behalf. Check over the title deed and make sure the property is what it says. Some buyers have bought the house only to find the land is on a different title and vice versa. The same goes with the boundaries of the property which need to be the same as the title deed. If buying from a private individual you have to get your lawyers to draw up a reservation or purchase option and lease contract.  This contract binds you and the seller to the sale of the house at a specific price in accordance to schdules you have both agreed. Such an agreement will include any penalties for default of either party. 

Now that you have the title all checked out you can go ahead and translate into English just to make sure. If you are buying a new home from a developer, the developer will almost likely have a standard contract format. The format may vary but always go over the deed and title and anything else in the contract regardless of what the developer shows you. 

Payment of your Property

A deposit of 10% is usually required to secure a property and total payments should be made within 30 to 60 days. You can obtain longer periods but you will probably be required to pay a higher deposit. Deposits are normally non refundable, except by default of the vendor, so baer in mind that once the deposit is placed you are committed.

This is also the same for the seller. They have to refund your deposit and pay a penalty of an equal amount if they default on the contract. Deposit in escrow is still rare in Thailand, but it is becoming an increasingly recognized way of proceeding. It is a lot safer compared to having to make a claim fo damages in case the seller defaults.

Beyond the price, payment and schedules, it's important that a contract includes clauses to cover who will pay the legal fees, transfer fees and taxes as well as an understanding of the value at which the sale will be declared. This is normally, for tax reasons, at or close to the government minimum assessed value.

Buildings a part from condominiums do not have any form of title document, but their sale or long lease can be registered at the Amphor land office. Proof of ownership, must be established either from proof of construction or document showing previous sale-purchase. This is not to be confused with the House Registration document, which is only a register of the house's occupants.

 Legal Guide by Siam Legal

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