There are various types of property that you may wish to purchase in Thailand. However, the payment method may vary according to these different types of property. The payment methods may also vary according to whom you are buying from. Either this be a developer, a natural person in a second hand sale, a private sale or even from a company. The payment method may also be different in cases where you are either buying on behalf of company or as a private individual, and also goes so far into if you are purchasing off of a foreigner or a Thai national in a condominium purchase.
It must be kept in mind however, that foreign nationals are prima facie, not permitted to own land in Thailand.
If you are as a foreigner wishing to purchase a condominium, you are permitted to own a condominium outright 100% freehold. That is, you may have your name registered on the title. Be sure to check with the developers that the foreign quota that is the amount of foreign ownership in the building has not exceeded 49%.
If you are purchasing from a developer, the payment methods are usually stipulated and outlined in your sales and purchase agreement. In most cases, if the property is purchase off-plan, the payments will be stretched over the period of time in which the condominium will take to be completed. Please be sure that the last payment is not made until the date of the transfer of ownership.
If you are purchasing a completed condominium, the payment method will not take as long as an unfinished project but will however still and should be outlined in your sales and purchase agreement.
With regards to the payments, it is also essential to keep in mind that the monies paid for the purchase price of these condominium, must have derived from an overseas account in order to prove that the money being paid for the condominium is indeed from overseas and not made within the country as this is not permitted. For this reason, you would need to open a local bank account in Thailand in your name, and then transfer the funds from your overseas account to your local bank account here. Once you have done so, an issuance of a Foreign Exchange Transaction slip will be present as you must request this from the bank. This document will then need to be present on the day of the transfer of ownership at the land department.
If you wish to purchase a house or a villa, the payment method is generally the same as the above. That is, the payment method for an unfinished house or villa will be paid over the period time up until the house or villa is complete in installments. The last payment will not be made until the day of transfer of ownership at the land office. All of the information regarding the payment methods and the responsibility of the taxes will and should be outlined in the Sales and Purchase Agreement.
A completed project that is brought from the developer will and should have a contract in place.
If you are purchasing from a natural person in a private sale, there tends to be no contract in place either drafted by the seller or the buyer. It is suggested that in order to protect your interests in the property in case of default by the seller, that you will be covered and will have a remedy to the breach of contract.
With a foreign purchase of houses or villas, it is recommended that you purchase one that is provided to you leasehold beforehand. However, if this is not the case, it is suggested that you contact a lawyer or solicitor to draft a lease agreement for you, or some form of interest in the house or villa, as a foreigner is not permitted to own land in Thailand. Please bear in mind that this is once again up to the discretion of the land officer as to whether they will permit the registration of such a lease, although there is no law that prohibits this.
If as a foreigner you wish to purchase land to build upon, prima facie, a foreigner cannot own land in Thailand. However, if you do have a Thai limited company in place, you may purchase this land through your Thai limited Company. Otherwise, you may also choose to use the lease option or even register a superficies so that the interest of the house is separated from the interest in the land. However, you must bear in mind that the registration of such a lease or any right to the property, is upon the discretion of the land officer at the land department.
The payment method of the land is dependant again upon the seller and yourself. As there is nothing for completion here, be sure to check the title to make sure that the land you are purchasing is indeed the best title, namely a Chanote and not just a mere possessory right.