Legal restrictions to buy property in Thailand

Thailand – Property – Ownership

Foreigners are not allowed to own land in Thailand by law.
If interested to buy property in Thailand, a foreign investor has two options:
– A 30-year leasehold contract 
– Buy property in Thailand through a limited company.
Apartments can be purchased by foreigners as long as at least 51% of the building is owned by Thais.

Due to the legal restrictions in the Thai property market, many foreigners look for alternatives to a direct property purchase.

Leasing land in Thailand

A foreigner can lease land for 30 years in Thailand. However, leasing is rather unusual, in most cases this occurs when a foreign man marries a Thai woman. The Thai woman, as a Thai citizen, purchases the land and stipulates a lease agreement with her foreign husband.

No matter who you lease from, make sure that all data on the deed is accurate. Also make sure that the land you are leasing has the appropriate title. The leasing contract states the duration of the lease, the buyer´s right to resell it and the registration fee.

Land titles

Land can have different titles in Thailand, depending on factors such as the location or whether it can be leased to a foreigner or not. There are seven types of land titles but just three of them can be leased: Chanot, Nor Sor Saam Gor and Nor Sor Saam.

Purchasing land through a company

Another alternative, is to set up a Thai Limited Company. If you decide this is the best option for you, be aware that as a foreigner, you cannot hold half or more than half of the company’s shares. Therefore the company has to be at least 51% owned by Thai citizen.
They can then choose to sign over their company rights to you.
Note, that the Thai Immigration office is aware of this kind of procedures and will certainly monitor your business.

Buying an apartment as a foreigner

Due to the legal restrictions mentioned above, To Buy Property in Thailand most foreigners choose to simply buy a condominium or apartment in Phuket,Thailand.
However, a foreigner can only purchase a condominium in his/her own name, as long as at least 51% of the building is owned by Thai people.

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