Property Law in Thailand
Property law in Thailand is complicated. Property ownership laws in Thailand are kind of nationalistic, where foreign individuals are only allowed to secure properties legitimately through certain ways. Foreigners may own a condo freehold, as long as less than half of the building space is owned by foreigners. Each time a condo unit is sold to a foreigner, a document will be required from the building stating that less than half of the building is foreigner-owned. Also, foreigners are not allowed to own land, except on exceptional cases for foreigners who are established and have been in Thailand for a long period of time.
Property Law in Thailand
Common methods for foreigners to secure land in Thailand:
- Have a signatory authority of a Thai company which owns the property, as the largest shareholder;
- Sign a 30-year lease with a domestic company or Thai individual, with an option to renew for another 30 years;
There are also other methods that foreigners have acquired property in Thailand, but mostly are questionable and deemed unnecessary in view of legal ways – oftentimes causing problems in the long run. You must understand property law in Thailand.
The most common way to take advantage of real estate properties in Thailand is by concluding a Lease Agreement with a Thai national. The lease agreement should be hand written and requires registration at the Land Department if the period for the lease is more than three years. Usually, a lease is permitted for 50 years if it is for commercial purpose, and 30 years for non-commercial purposes. Also, marrying a Thai national does not make a foreigner co-owner of a real estate property in Thailand.
Every time a Thai national marries a foreigner, she is only allowed to purchase real estate only if she executes a letter stating that the said property is to become a separate personal property of the Thai national. The foreigner spouse may then enter into a Usufruct Agreement with the Thai spouse for him to enjoy and use the acquired property.
A foreign national may also own land in Thailand, provided that he makes an investment in the country with an amount of not less than 40 million Thai Baht. This allows the foreign national to have the land for residential purposes only, not exceeding 1 rai. The investment of the foreigner s required to become beneficial to the social and economic development of the Kingdom. It is advisable to speak about that with a Thailand property lawyer.