There are various types of title deeds in Thailand that can identify what type of possession you have and the rights you have concerning that relevant property. These include the main title deeds which consist of a Chanote (freehold), Nor Sor Sam Gor, Nor Sor Sam and a mere possessory right.
There are also many more which relate to the taxes paid on the relevant property, but not actually fully formed title deeds which will not be discussed. Please bear in mind that it is not recommended in a foreign acquisition of property for you to purchase a title that bears any less than the best title, namely a Chanote. You may view the detailed description of each title deed below.
This type of title grants the holder of this document the full rights over the land. Upon owning this land, you may sub-divide, sell, transfer, assign, utilize and possesses. The measurements of the land are also the most accurate, hence making it the best or most preferred title deed to hold if you are to buy in Thailand. Generally all condominiums are to be built on Chanote titles and no less.
A Nor Sor 3 (Sam) is issued by a district land officer and has never yet been measured by the Land Department; hence the land has no exact boundaries or exact parcel points. Having no exact boundaries can cause problems in the future with regard to determining the area your land is, and in comparison and division to neighboring land. This type of document determines the right to merely possess the land, but without transferring actual possession. It also may be sold or transferred subject to it being publicized for at least a 30 day period. However, the Nor Sor 3 title may later be switched to a Nor Sor 3 Gor, then furthermore, transforms that title to a freehold title deed (Chanote) in the future. Developers usually tend to buy land that is already a freehold title, namely a Chanote or Nor Sor 4. If they chose to purchase the Nor Sor 3, they will maintain that it will indeed be able to be upgraded to a Chanote title.
A land awaiting a full title deed is granted the document Nor Sor 3 Gor title document. The land is measured by the Land Department and determines the exact boundaries using the aerial survey. The owner knows exactly what he owns. This type of land may be sold, transferred, or mortgaged, as well as divided, as a land with freehold title deed (Chanote) the owner of the land may file a petition to the Land Department to file a request to change it to a full title deed (Chanote), and the Land Department may do so if there is no opposition made against the petition.
There are various types of titles that are mere possessory rights. These type of possession rights are generally not recommended when purchasing in Thailand, as it does not contain any form of ownership whatsoever. These include titles such as the Sor Kor 1 which allows occupation and utilization of the land upon the owner. Also a Nor Sor 2 in which is also issued by the land department and allows for the same as the Sor Kor 1, that is, possession, occupation and utilization. However this land is only allocated to occupy within 6 months, and must be utilized within the expiration period of three years beginning from the date of receiving possession.
This type of title deed is least recommended. A land with a possessory right has never been substantiated by Department, but is only recognized by tax payments at the Local Administrative Office. Although Thai Law stipulates that a foreigner may not own land in Thailand, there are alternative options. We would be more than happy to discuss the options available to you with a meeting, an over the phone conversation, or by email.