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Thailand Leasehold Property: Does It Ever Make Sense To Lease?

Editor: Cheyenne Hollis
Dot Property Blog April 2020

There is a lot of information on why you shouldn’t want Thailand leasehold property. Most of these articles focus on the fact that owning something forever is better than leasing something for a certain number of years. It is a logical argument and one that is true in most circumstances. However, that is most and not all. There are a few times when Thailand leasehold property is either a better option or the only choice available. Let’s take a look at the two times you should consider Thailand leasehold property. Here’s when Thailand leasehold property makes sense Prime locations a few years ago, it was impossible to acquire a unit in many developments found in prime locations such as Wireless Road or along the beach in Phuket. One of the notable examples of this was Ritz-Carlton Residences Bangkok inside the MahaNakhon building which was initial leasehold property. Eventually, units were converted into freehold units, but some locations are still a stronghold for Thailand leasehold property. For example, the four luxury residential projects that will eventually be launched at One Bangkok are set to be exclusively leasehold. That’s because TCC Assets and Frasers Property, the project’s developers, could only acquire the land on a lease arrangement. The developer has already revealed that the first tower launched on the site will contain Bangkok’s first Ritz-Carlton Hotel along with 110 leasehold residential units. There are also other pockets of Bangkok and some tourist areas where freehold projects can be hard to come by. If you have your heart set on one of these places, Thailand leasehold property might be your only option. Landed properties buying a house or villa in Thailand isn’t as easy as purchasing a condo unit. That’s because foreigners can legally own the latter, but not the former. One workaround is having a Thai registered company purchase the landed property. However, this entails a lot more work and possibly different tax considerations depending on how you go about it. Alternatively, Thailand leasehold property can be a much easier and straightforward arrangement for foreigners wishing to acquire a villa or house. Leases are good for 30 years and can be renewed as long as both parties agree. More importantly, the lease remains valid until its stated duration regardless of if the land is sold or something else unforeseen occurs.

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