Bright sun, white sand, blue lagoons… Fairy tale? Reality! Today, to have your own “castle” in the Kingdom, being born into a family of monarchs is unnecessary. It is enough to decide on the format of the house, choose the option that suits you in all respects, come to Thailand, and complete the deal. In this article, we will tell you about the path you must take when you decide to buy real estate in Thailand by the sea to make your fairy tale come true.
Stages of buying an apartment from the developer
So, you have decided to buy an apartment in Thailand from a developer. What are the stages you have to go through?
To begin with, you will be asked to deposit to confirm the seriousness of your intentions. For the developer, this is a kind of “safety cushion” if you refuse to conclude a deal. As a rule, the advance amount does not exceed ฿100,000. At this stage, a deposit agreement is signed. For its registration, you only need the passport of the buyer.
Did you make a deposit? Now you can draw up a contract of sale. The duration of this process depends on the internal procedures of the developer and, as a rule, does not exceed 1 month. On average 14-21 days. If, when the contract is ready, the buyer is outside of Thailand, we add 2-3 days to the process for shipment by DHL.
With the signing of the contract, the buyer makes the first payment per the payment schedule.
When the object is put into operation, the developer makes it the buyer’s property. The Land and Architectural Committees deal with this issue in Thailand.
As soon as the developer receives all the documents confirming your ownership, you become the official owner of the property in Thailand.
The duration of the registration procedure (on average): from 10 days to 1.5 months plus the time for construction if we are discussing an off-plan project.
Stages of buying an apartment in the market of secondary housing
Let’s consider the second option. You have chosen the secondary housing market. The stages of registration of the transaction as a whole will be the same as in the case of the acquisition of housing in a new building. But there are some nuances.
If you sign a standard sale and purchase agreement when buying an apartment from a developer, then in the case of a secondary housing market, you will first have to discuss the form of an agreement with the seller. At this stage, such important details as price, deposit, etc., are negotiated.
Be careful! Do not be too lazy to carefully study all the contract terms and, if necessary, make changes. If the transaction takes place with the participation of our company, we always connect a lawyer to eliminate risks.
Keep in mind that you and the seller will share the costs of processing the transaction.
Stages of buying a house, villa, or townhouse
Buying a house, villa, or townhouse in Thailand should be divided into 2 parts: land registration and building design. The building, as a rule, is issued in full ownership according to a scheme similar to buying an apartment. You can check Thailand-Real.Estate to get all necessary information.
And you can register the land in the following ways:
Leasehold – registration of a land plot for a long-term lease. In this case:
- To begin with, you and the owner of the house (land) will need to sign a standard application form in Thai at the Land Department Office in the presence of the competent land official.
- After 1–1.5 months, you will again need to visit the specified Office to complete the rights transfer. You will be given a standard, stamped Thai language rental agreement at this stage.
- From that moment, you officially become the tenant of the site for the first term of the lease, which is usually 30 years, then it can be renewed twice more for the same period. You can lease the land for 90 years, after which the land must be re-registered to another person. However, in each case, we order due diligence, and our lawyers check the documents before starting the process to make sure that the deadlines are correct and that it is possible to meet them.
Freehold – ownership registration through opening a Thai company. In this case:
- You register your own company with an authorized capital of $500–$3,000 in Thailand, which will be the direct owner of the land. The required document is a passport.
- Since foreigners can own no more than 49% of the company’s shares – they are registered to you, and the remaining 51% is registered to nominal Thais. And, as a rule, on several to blur the share. At the same time, when registering a company, you receive a package of documents from each Thai co-owner. This package usually includes a power of attorney to manage the company, a document on the transfer of shares to you, and a resignation. Thus, de facto, you are solely in control of the company’s activities, and at the same time, de jure, all the formalities are met.
- Maintaining such a nominee firm costs approximately $1,000 per year.
In this case, getting all the documents right is very important to guarantee the right to effectively control your company. For such transactions, we always, without exception, involve qualified lawyers. The company registration process takes approximately 2–3 weeks.
The procedure for transferring ownership rights from the seller to a new buyer begins as soon as the company is registered. Another 1–1.5 months.
For villas in luxury complexes, a mixed scheme is more common, in which:
- All the land of the complex is registered with a Thai company. The community of owners creates an offshore company that owns a minority stake in this Thai company. Each owner has a share in an offshore company and his own offshore company through which the share is registered. At the same time, a long-term lease for 30+30+30 between a Thai company (owner of the land) and an offshore company owned by the owners is registered for each piece of land.
- In this case, re-registration consists of companies’ re-registration from one owner to another. It is very difficult to predict the time of such a transaction; on average, you can focus on 2-3 months.