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Chiang Mai Lanna House
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Esther your experienced Chiang Mai Lanna House Real Estate Agent.
Esther 085-614-8205

Buying a Condo in Chiang Mai

 

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Buying a Condominium in Thailand is probably the simplest and easiest way to acquire property.  It is the most Popular option among Foreigners who have no legal avenue to own land.   Click Condos For Sale to check out our selection at Chiang Mai Lanna House.  A copy of the Condominium Act Of Thailand (1999) is provided at the end of this Article.  Your Agent at Chaing Mai Lanna House strongly suggest that you discuss these matters with a Lawyer.  We will be happy to recommend a Lawyer experienced in Thai Law.

Thai law says that Foreigners who are permitted to stay in the Kingdom as a Resident can own up to 49% of a Condominium Property.  Therefore, if a Property Developer builds a Condominium with 100 units, then 49 units can be owned by Foreigners.  When you buy a Condo, you wholly own the Condo in your name.

A Foreigner can buy and own a Condo in his or her name.  This is the only form of Property that can be Owned by a Foreigner.

The only stipulations is that the funds used to acquire the Condo are remitted from abroad and are correctly recorded as such by a Thai Bank on a Money Transfer Certificate (Tor Tor Sam).  Once completed, you are issued a Certificate of Ownership, which records the exact percentage of Common Area Rights the Owner has.

The Phases to Purchasing a Condominium in Chiang Mai are:

Phase 1 – Prepare To Settle Down In Chiang Mai

If you need to Sell Property in your Home Country prior to having the Resources to Purchase a Condo in Chiang Mai, this process should be completed prior to starting these Phases.  You need to have ALL your Resources available prior to taking the following Phases.

Phase 2 – Find The Perfect Location

Our Real Estate Professionals at Chiang Mai Lanna House can help you find the perfect Condominium location. 

When considering the Location, you may want to consider the following:

  • Local / Condo Amenities
    • Shopping Centers
    • Local Convenience Stores
    • Public Transport
    • Access to Major Road Links
    • Access to Your Work Place
    • Schools and Colleges
    • Beaches
    • Parks
    • Golf Courses
    • Gymnasium
    • Swimming Pool
    • Sporting Facilities
    • Entertainment Facilities
    • Quiet Secluded Area
  • Type of Condominium
    • New Condo or a resale
    • Ready to move in or in need of renovation
    • Number of bedrooms
    • Number of bathrooms
    • Number of reception rooms
    • Balcony
    • Parking, under cover or off-road parking
    • Aspect - North, South, East or West Facing
    • Views - Beachfront, Cityscape, Countryside, Sea, Mountain
    • Privacy and security
  • Features
    • Swimming pool
    • Gymnasium
    • Telephone
    • Cable or Satellite TV
    • Internet Access
    • Air Conditioning

Phase 3 – Determine Maintenance Fee

Check the Amount of the Maintenance Fee.  Also check that the Maintenance Fee is for the Building where the Condo resides.  Get the Maintenance Fee in Writing with the Procedure for how they are Paid.  Let your Chiang Mai Lanna House Real Estate Professional check if the Maintenance Fee is Negotiable.

Phase 4 – Negotiate The Price

Your Real Estate Professional at Chiang Mai Lanna House can help you to Negotiate your Price.  It is considered Polite to Dicker over the price of a Condo that you want to Buy.  Never accept the Asking Price – this is only the Opening Bid in the Negotiations. If you can’t agree on the Price, Table an Offer that is what you are happy to pay and leave the Negotiations.  No one will take Offense. 

Phase 5 – Make An Offer

May we suggest that you make your Offer through your Chiang Mai Lanna House Realtor.  We may be able to help with the Negotiations and prevent any difficulties from ruining the deal. There are several ways to make an Offer.  We can reduce the chances of the deal not going through because of any Cultural / Language Difficulties.  We will work with the Owner to get an Agreement that both the Buyer and Seller are happy with.

Phase 6 – Documenting An Agreement

When you are close to agreeing on the Price, this may be a good time to have a Face-To-Face meeting between the Buyer and Seller.  Your Real Estate Professional at Chiang Mai Lanna House can arrange any Meetings that you wish or we can handle the entire Negotiations / Offer / Agreement paperwork ourselves.  We can provide Translations services between English and Thai or any other Language you desire.  If you choose, Chiang Mai Lanna House can make the Final Offer and Documenting the Agreement for you.

Phase 7 – Closing The Deal With A Deposit

When a final Price has been agreed to, you need to hold the Property for Yourself with a Deposit.  A Deposit is usually 3% - 5% of the Agreed Price.  (You may be able to Negotiate this slightly.)  The Details will be documented in a Contract which are signed by both the Buyer and the Owner.  Your Real Estate Professional at Chaing Mai Lanna House can arrange this for you.

Phase 8 – Writing A Contract

The Contract should contain the following to ensure they are Contractually Bound:

  • Identification of the Condominium
  • Agreed Price and Date of Agreement
  • Deposit Amount and Date of Payment
  • Mode of Deposit Payment

The Contract Signing should be performed with both your Chiang Mai Lanna House Realtor and your Lawyer present to protect both our interests and the interests of the Buyer and Seller.  (Chiang Mai Lanna House can Recommend a Responsible Lawyer for you.)

Phase 9 – Ensure Condo is Ready for Occupancy

Make sure that the Condo is completed before purchasing because many construction projects run out of money before completion.  Ensure all the identified Modifications have been completed.

Phase 10 – Open an Account with Thai Bank

To open an account in a Thai Bank you will need a Long Term Visa.  You must present your Passport and make an Initial Deposit.  The Initial Deposit may be as little as 1,000 Baht.

Phase 11 – Transfer Funds to Thai Bank

The funds for the purchase of the Condominium must be transferred from your Home Country in your ORIGINAL CURRENCY.

Phase 12 – Document the Transfer

Make sure that you document the reason for the Transfer as “Buy a Condominium”.   You must receive a Money Transfer Certificate (Tor Tor Sam).

Phase 13 – Complete the Money Transfer

When the Money Arrives, Get a Foreign Exchange Transaction Form.  You need this to Register the Transfer of Ownership.

Phase 14 – Transferring The Ownership

May we suggest that we Accompany you to the Condo Offices so that we can Assist with any last minute Details or Translations.  We at Chiang Mai Lanna House want everything to go well for you.

If you have any questions about this process, please contact us at Chiang Mai Lanna House.

 
 

CONDOMINIUM ACT OF THAILAND (1999)
Condominium Act of 1999


Section 19 (1): Aliens and Juristic persons which the law treats as aliens may own a condominium unit if they qualify as one of the following types of aliens or juristic persons:

  1. An alien who has been permitted to stay in the kingdom as a resident under the laws of immigration.
  2. An alien who has been permitted to enter the Kingdom under the laws on promotion of investment.
  3. A juristic person as prescribed under Sections 97 and 98 of the land code which has been registered as a juristic person under Thai law.
  4. A Juristic person who is an alien under Announcement of the National Executive Council No. 281, dated 24 November B.E. 2515, and which has received a promotion certificate under the laws on promotion of investment.
  5. An alien or a juristic person which the law treats as an alien which imports foreign currency into the Kingdom or withdraws money from a deposit account of Thai Baht of a person having residence abroad or withdraws money from a deposit account of foreign currency

Section 19 (2): Each condominium may have aliens and / or juristic persons as stated under section 19 take ownership of its units in total of not more than forty-nine per cent of the whole area of all units in that condominium as shown at the time the condominium was registered.
In any condominium where aliens or juristic persons as stipulated in section 19 take ownership of units in excess of the rate as prescribed by the preceding paragraph, that condominium shall be located in Bangkok, municipal or other local government areas as prescribed by Ministerial Regulations, and the area of the land on which the condominium is situated including the land available for use or for common interests of its co-owners shall not exceed five rai.
The ownership of units pursuant to the second paragraph, which is acquired by aliens or juristic persons as stated in section 19, shall be in accordance with the rules, methods and conditions prescribed by Ministerial Regulations.

Section 19 (3): To transfer ownership of a condominium unit to an alien or a juristic person as stated under Section 19, the transferor of ownership in the condominium unit shall give the names of the aliens or juristic persons as stated under Section 19 and the ratio of the area of the condominium units of which aliens and juristic persons have ownership to the competent official, and the alien or juristic person who applies to accept the transfer of ownership in the condominium unit shall provide the following evidence to the competent official:

  1. An alien prescribed under Section 19(1) shall produce evidence of a permit to hold residency in the kingdom under the laws on immigration.
  2. An alien prescribed under Section 19(2) shall produce evidence of a permit to enter the kingdom under the laws on promotion of investment.
  3. A juristic person prescribed under Section 19(3) shall produce evidence of being registered under Thai law.
  4. A juristic person prescribed under Section 19(4) shall produce evidence of being a holder of a promotion certificate under the laws on promotion of investment.
  5. An alien or a juristic person as prescribed under Section 19(5) shall produce evidence of having imported foreign currency into the Kingdom or evidence of withdrawal from a deposit account of Thai Baht of a person having residence abroad or evidence of withdrawal from a deposit account of foreign currency in the amount of not less than the price of the unit to be purchased.

Section 19 (4): When a competent official who has received and checked the documents and evidence under Section 19, and has found that they are correct documents and evidence according to Section 19 and that the ratio of ownership of the area of the condominium units held by aliens or juristic persons under Section 19, also by those who have acquired ownership and by those who have applied to accept ownership, does not exceed the rate  prescribed under the first paragraph of Section 19 or meets the requirements under the second and third paragraph thereof, the competent official shall register the right and juristic act concerning the condominium unit according to Chapter IV for the alien or juristic person who applied to accept ownership.

Section 19 (5) An alien or a juristic person prescribed under Section 19 shall dispose of the condominium unit under the following circumstances:
When an alien or juristic person prescribed under Section 19 has acquired a condominium unit through inheritance as legitimate heir or legatee of a will or through any other means, as the case may be, which when added to the units in that condominium already owned by aliens and/or juristic persons prescribed under Section 19, causes the ratio prescribed under the first paragraph of Section 19 to be exceeded, or does not meet the requirements under the second or third paragraph of Section 19
When a competent official who has received and checked the documents and evidence under Section 19, and has found that they are correct documents and evidence according to Section 19 and that the ratio of ownership of the area of the condominium units held by aliens or juristic persons under Section 19, also by those who have acquired ownership and by those who have applied to accept ownership, does not exceed the rate prescribed under the first paragraph of Section 19 or meets the requirements under the second and third paragraph thereof, the competent official shall register the right and juristic act concerning the condominium unit according to Chapter IV for the alien or juristic person who applied to accept ownership.
An alien or a juristic person prescribed under Section 19 shall dispose of the condominium unit under the following circumstances:

  1. When an alien or juristic person prescribed under Section 19 has acquired a condominium unit through inheritance as legitimate heir or legatee of a will or through any other means, as the case may be, which when added to the units in that condominium already owned by aliens and/or juristic persons prescribed under Section 19, causes the ratio prescribed under the first paragraph of Section 19 to be exceeded, or does not meet the requirements under the second or third paragraph of Section 19.
  2. When an alien prescribed under Section 19(1) has had his/her residency in the Kingdom revoked or when his/her Certificate of Alien Residency is not valid.
  3. When an alien prescribed under Section 19(2) or (5) has been exiled out of the Kingdom and has not been granted leniency or has been sent out of the Kingdom to work instead of being exiled.
  4. When an alien prescribed under Section 19(2) is not permitted by the board of investment to remain in the Kingdom.
  5. When the promotion certificate of a juristic person prescribed under Section 19(4) has been revoked.

An alien or juristic person which is required to dispose of a condominium unit under the preceding paragraph must give written notice to the competent official within 60 days of the date of the preceding paragraph having occurred.
Under Sub-section (1) the condominium unit which causes the ratio to be exceeded shall be disposed of. Under Sub-sections (2), (3), (4) and (5) all the condominium units owned by the alien shall be disposed of.
Disposal of a condominium unit under paragraph three shall be made within a period of not more than one year from the date of the ownership of the condominium unit, the date the residence permit has been revoked, the date the certificate of residency has been invalidated, the date of exile, the date the board of investment revoked the permit to stay in the Kingdom, or the date the promotion certificate has been revoked, as the case may be. If it is not disposed of within the stated period of time, the Director-General of the Lands Department shall have the authority to dispose of the condominium unit, and the provisions relating to enforcement of the disposal of land under Chapter 3 of the Land Code and Ministerial Regulations issued under the code shall apply mutatis mutandis to the disposal of the condominium unit.

Section 19 (6): When a competent official orders the revocation of a residency permit in the Kingdom, when it is evident to a competent official that a Certificate of Residency of an alien is not valid as required under Section 19(1), when a competent official orders the exile out of the Kingdom of an alien as prescribed under Section 19(1), (2) or (5), when the permit to stay in the Kingdom of an alien as prescribed under Section 19(2) is revoked, or when there is a revocation of a promotion certificate for a juristic person as prescribed under Section 19(4), as the case may be, the competent official shall notify the Director-General of the Lands Department within 60 Days from the date of the order or the date of learning such fact.

Section 19 (7) An alien or a juristic person which the law treats as an alien, except one prescribed under Section 19, which has acquired a condominium unit through inheritance as legitimate heir or legatee of a will or through any other means, as the case may be, shall give written notice to the competent official within 60 days from the date of ownership of the condominium unit and shall dispose of that unit within a period of not more than one year from the date of acquiring possession of the unit. If it is not disposed of within such period of time, the provisions of Section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Section 19 (8) Whoever acquires ownership of a condominium unit while holding Thai nationality but later loses Thai nationality by waiving Thai nationality, nationalization or having Thai nationality revoked under the laws on nationality and is not an alien as prescribed under Section 19 shall notify the competent official of the loss of Thai nationality and the fact that ownership of the condominium unit may no longer be held within 60 days of the date of loss of Thai nationality. The condominium unit shall be disposed of within a period of not more than one year from the date of loss of Thai nationality. If it is not disposed of within such period of time, the provisions of section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Section 19 (9) Whoever acquires ownership of a condominium unit while holding Thai nationality but later loses Thai nationality by waiving Thai nationality, nationalization or having Thai nationality revoked under the laws on nationality, is an alien prescribed under Section 19, and wishes to continue to hold ownership of the condominium unit, shall notify the competent official of the loss of Thai nationality and shall present evidence of being an alien as prescribed under Section 19 to the competent official within 180 days from the date of the loss of Thai nationality. If the ownership in the condominium unit of that alien causes the ratio prescribed under the first paragraph of Section 19(2) to be exceeded or does not meet the requirements under the second or third paragraph of Section 19(2), the condominium unit which causes the excess of the ratio or which does not meet the requirements shall be disposed of within a period of not more than one year from the date of loss of Thai nationality. If it is not disposed of within such period of time, the provisions of Section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.
If the alien as prescribed in paragraph one does not desire to hold ownership of that condominium unit, the competent official shall be notified within 60 days from the date of the loss of Thai nationality, and the condominium unit shall be disposed of within a period of not more than one year from the date of the loss of Thai nationality. If it is not disposed of within such period of time, the provisions of Section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Section 19 (10): When a Thai juristic person which owns a condominium unit has its juristic status changed to that of a juristic person the law treats as an alien and is not a juristic person prescribed under Section 19, the competent official shall be notified of the change in status and the fact that the juristic person is not qualified to own that condominium unit within 60 days from the date of the change of status. The condominium unit must be disposed of within a period of not more than one year from the date of the change of status. If it is not disposed of within such period of time, the provisions of section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Section 19 (11): When a Thai juristic person which owns a condominium unit has its juristic status changed to that of a juristic person the law treats as an alien juristic person and is a juristic person which may own a condominium unit as prescribed under Section 19 wishes to own that unit further, the competent official shall be notified in writing of the change in status. Evidence of being a juristic person as prescribed under Section 19 shall be presented to the competent official within 180 days from the date of the change in status. If the ownership of that juristic person causes the ratio prescribed under Section 19(2) to be exceeded, the unit exceeding the ratio shall be disposed of within a period of not more than one year from the date of the change in status. If it is not disposed of within such period of time, the provisions of Section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.
If the juristic person under paragraph one does not wish to own the condominium unit any further, the juristic person shall notify the competent official of the change in status within a period of 60 days from the change of status, and shall dispose of the unit within a period of not more than one year from the date of the change in status. If it is not disposed of within such period of time, the provisions of Section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

Section 19 (12): When an alien or a juristic person which the law treats as an alien which has the duty to notify the competent official of the disposing of a condominium unit under Section 19(5), the acquiring of a condominium unit under Section 19(7), loss of Thai nationality under Section 19(8) and Section 19(9) or change of status of a juristic person under Section 19(10) and Section 19(11), as the case may be, fails to notify the competent official within the prescribed time, it shall be an offence and the alien or juristic person shall be fined not more than 500 Baht per day throughout the duration of the violation.

Section 19(13): Anyone owning a condominium unit on behalf of an alien or a juristic person which the law treats as an alien, regardless of whether an alien or juristic person is entitled to own a condominium unit under this Act, shall be considered to have committed an offence and penalized with a term of imprisonment of not more than two years or a fine of not more than 20,000 Baht, or both, and the provisions of Section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.
If there is reasonable cause to suspect that a person has acquired ownership of a condominium unit in violation of the provisions of this Act, the competent official is empowered to verify and call the relevant persons to make a statement or submit related documents or evidence for consideration as necessary.
Anyone who violates or fails to comply with the provisions of paragraph two shall be considered to have committed an offence and shall be penalized with a term of imprisonment of not more than three months or a fine of not more than 6,000 Baht, or both.
The following paragraph should be added to section 55 as paragraph three of the Condominium Act, B.E. 2522:-
An alien or a juristic person prescribed under Section 19 who is named owner on a land title deed as a result of the registration of dissolution of a condominium under paragraph one shall dispose of his/her own portion of the land within a period of not more than one year from the date of the registration of dissolution. If it is not disposed of within such period of time, the provisions of Section 19(5), paragraph four, shall apply mutatis mutandis.

The Legal Professionals at Chiang Mai Lanna House are ready to help you.

 
 

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