Phuket is a good property market and profitable investments can be made on the Thai island, providing that you know where to start your property research. There are plenty of specificities that has to be considered prior to signing a contract with a seller. Should you be looking forward to invest in Phuket’s real estate market, here are a few things to remember.
First thing that you need to know is that if it is quite straightforward for foreigners to acquire a property in Thailand, they cannot own land parcels. This rule apply for the whole country, Phuket included. The result – odd at first sight – is that one investor can own a villa, but not the land on which it’s built. Nonetheless there are perfectly legal ways for a foreign buyer to secure a land plot and own it factually. It can be made via a company registered in Thailand owning the land, or via a 90 years lease (30+30+30).
Things are different for apartments, as the Condominium Act of Thailand states that 49% of the building can be the property of foreigners, making it possible for them to have a freehold tenure. However, note that only buildings registered as ‘condominiums’ offer freehold apartments.
Secondly, after you acknowledge the legal aspects of a property transaction in Thailand and decide to go either for a house or for an apartment, it is recommended to have a look at property listing websites. They not only list the properties available for sale on the market, they will also give you a good idea of the market’s rates. For example, here is the website of a well-established Phuket agent, with properties of all kinds: www.phuketrealestateforsale.com.
Browsing properties all over Phuket will also help you to select the region of the island where you want to invest in. Phuket is a big island of more than 40 kilometers from North to South, and whilst one locality may fit your needs, another one might be just inappropriate for you.
When investing in real estate in a foreign country, it is highly recommended to contact in person a realtor or a broker that can help you find the right property. A good realtor must understand your needs and provide you with a personal service, not only by directing you towards properties matching your objectives, but also by providing advice and guidance regarding the legal matters stated above. Therefore, our third advice would be for you to get in touch with a Phuket-based realtor or broker.
Fourthly, you need to inspect the properties you have selected online. You may find much information and pictures of a property on an agent website, but they can be deceptive, no matter how truthful your realtor is. It is also of the highest importance that you visit the surroundings of the property that you intend to buy. Real estate is all about location and if you find that nice pristine beach at your doorstep, your future home is most likely to have a lot more value than if it were close to a highway!
The last thing to consider – and definitely not the least! – is to hire a lawyer who will review the sale contract and make sure that everything is in order, so that your very best interests are protected. More often than not real estate agents and brokers work with lawyers that you can use, but you can also get your own legal advisor in the occurrence that someone else has been recommended to you.
If you follow these simple guidelines, then you are most likely to achieve an interesting property investment in Phuket.