Thailand Property Services
Canadians wishing to own real estate in Thailand must first know about the basics about Thai property deals and processes. They should also have an idea or two about the possible pitfalls in property deals in the Kingdom that they must avoid.
Being more familiar with the whole property thing in Thailand can lead to satisfying, safe and successful property purchase or lease.
To start with, Canadians or other non-Thai citizens, are not allow to own land outright in Thailand but they are allowed to obtain long term leases, usufructs or right of superficies. These options, although they do not really transfer land ownership to the expatriate, provides certain rights to foreigners like lease for example; with lease, the Canadian is allowed to use the property (depending on the limits agreed upon if there are any) as if it is his own but when the contract expires, his rights for the control over the said property will be extinguished and the property would returned to the owner.
What Canadians can own and register with their names on freehold are condominiums but still, they should remain vigilant as condominiums themselves are not pitfall free.
Hidden dangers in acquiring property are everywhere, not only in Thailand. One of these is dealing and paying the wrong person, someone who is not in legal capacity or authority to negotiate and execute a deal for a property. Another danger and this involves condominiums is when buying a condo unit off-plan without doing the necessary checks and it turned out in the long run that the developer actually has no financial capacity to finish the project or that condominium development is not allowed on the very site it is being constructed.
Others still, they prefer to negotiate with the seller without the presence or guidance of a property lawyer leaving the possibility of their rights being abused upon.
These pitfalls can be avoided if the Canadian would hire a reputable property lawyer to conduct the necessary property checks to ensure his investment to be worthwhile and really satisfying.
This property lawyer would conduct title searches, due diligence, contract review and even translation services among others.
Why are these property services important?
The importance of these checks varies accordingly nonetheless, they are all crucial in having a safe property purchase in Thailand.
- Title Search - it is always important to first verify who the real owners of the property and a title search can trace even the previous owners of the property. Also, it provides the acquiring party an idea if the one selling or leasing the property is actually with legal authority to do so. The authenticity of the title deed would also be uncovered through a title search.
- Due Diligence - if a title search uncovers the background of the title and the present and previous owners, due diligence provides the Canadian with way more than that. Aside from checking everything about the title and the present and previous owners of the property, due diligence would also uncover if the previous owners or buyers of the property from a developer are really satisfied with their acquisition. Due diligence also allows the property buyer to know more about the background of the seller or developer on that matter.
Contract Review - there is always a possibility wherein what was agreed upon between the developer/seller and the buyer of a condo unit would not reflect on the final draft of the contract agreement such as the type of materials to be used as well as the schedule of payments.
The property lawyer would review the contract and find out if what was agreed previously are reflected on the contract. He would also check if the rights and interests of his Canadian client are well protected and respected.
- Translation Services - even if the property buyer is a Canadian, when it comes to official documents, Thailand utilizes the Thai language. His property lawyer in Thailand would check if the translations are accurate. But, the translation services of the property lawyer would not stop there as he can also provide translations and examples to his Canadian client on Thai property terms such as Rai and Chanote among others. He can also accurately translate the contents of a title deed.
It is understandable that some Canadians would not consider hiring a reputable lawyer in Thailand because for them, enlisting the services of one would simply mean more expenses on their part.
But, what they should understand is that, through a lawyer, he could be avoiding a possible lawsuit because his lawyer was able to uncover undeclared liens, encumbrances and other issues on the property.