Conducting a Title Search
Once you decide to purchase land or a condominium, you should have a title search performed. The search covers the real estate title and the associated paperwork. Performing this search ensures that everything is in order. You want to make sure that the individual who is selling the property is the actual owner. A title search can also tell you if the property has a Chanote deed or another type of title deed.
The Chanote deed is the best title deed to possess, as it enables you to possess and own the land or property. Other deeds in the system only permit the buyer to possess the land or property. You can make a deed, such as the Nor Sor 3 (Sam) Gor into a Chanote at the land office. To make this change, you will need to consult with a lawyer.
Performing Due Diligence
You also need to take an audit of the title to find out if the property comes with any encumbrances or restrictions. Doing so can help you clear up any problems with liens or financial obligations. By performing due diligence, your attorney can verify if everything is free and clear for purchase. Due diligence also allows your attorney to see if any actions have been brought against the seller in the judicial system in Thailand.
Reviewing the Terms of the Sale and Purchase Agreement
In addition, you will need legal help to review the terms of the Sale and Purchase Agreement and verify the wording. By reviewing the contract with your attorney, you can also add any comments on certain clauses. If you need to make any modifications, you can do so by a careful survey of the wording. By taking this stance, you will protect your real estate interests and ensure a successful outcome.
Not only will your lawyer take a look at the Sale and Purchase Agreement, but he can also advise you on other real estate documentation. This paperwork can take the form of a land lease agreement, a usufruct agreement, or a power of attorney, depending on the transaction.
Once you review your sales and purchase agreement and ask any legal questions, you are ready to transfer the title. Your lawyer will draft and prepare the application and supporting paperwork to register the transfer. This part of the process is made simpler if you are a foreigner, as your lawyer can handle all the details. For example, your lawyer can register the land or transfer ownership, on your behalf, through the Land Office.
Why You Need Legal Support
You will need legal services for each step of a real estate transaction in Thailand. Make sure you are fully covered in this respect. If you are a foreigner and set up a Thai limited company, you will need to introduce yourself to the whole real estate buying process. Investors also should understand the various title deeds and what property taxes cost in advance.
For example, you can buy land in Thailand if you are married to a person from Thailand and a foreigner. However, as a foreigner, you will need to declare that you do not have any rights on the land you plan to buy.
In essence, as a foreigner, you are basically waiving your rights to claim the property. A property, when purchased by a foreigner, must still be in the name of his or her spouse. As you can imagine, further problems can result if the couple divorces.
The real estate law also states that foreigners may buy and own land up to 1,600 square meters, or 1 rai per the Land Code Amendment Act of 1990 (section 96). This can be done as long as the foreign investor can invest 40 million baht and the land is used for residential purposes. Furthermore, the investment must be allocated in government bonds or assets – considered advantageous to Thailand’s economy. This type of investment cannot be transferred and therefore is only limited to the owner’s lifetime.
You can see that the law can get tricky if you invest in Thai land or real estate, especially if you have an outside interest. Again, it pays, literally, to have legal assistance. Don’t make any moves until you speak to a knowledgeable Thai property attorney.
If you need legal advice or assistance from a qualified property lawyer, please contact us today.