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Property Due Diligence in Thailand

Property due diligence is a critical process that ensures transparency, minimizes risks, and enhances informed decision-making in real estate transactions. In Thailand, a country known for its diverse real estate market, property due diligence holds immense significance. This article delves into the concept of property due diligence in Thailand, outlining its importance, key components, legal considerations, and the role it plays in safeguarding both buyers and sellers.

Importance of Property Due Diligence:

Property due diligence involves a comprehensive investigation and verification of property-related information to uncover any potential issues or risks. In Thailand’s dynamic real estate landscape, due diligence serves several vital purposes:

  1. Risk Mitigation: Due diligence identifies potential risks, such as legal disputes, title defects, encumbrances, or zoning violations, enabling parties to assess and manage these risks effectively.
  2. Informed Decision-Making: Buyers and investors can make informed decisions based on accurate and verified information about the property’s condition, ownership, and legal status.
  3. Transparency: Property due diligence promotes transparency between parties, fostering trust and ensuring fair dealings.

Key Components of Property Due Diligence:

Property due diligence encompasses various components that need careful examination:

  1. Title Verification: Ensuring a clear and marketable title by confirming ownership and checking for any encumbrances or liens.
  2. Land Zoning and Regulations: Verifying that the property complies with local zoning regulations and land use restrictions.
  3. Legal Compliance: Ensuring that the property adheres to relevant laws, regulations, and permits.
  4. Environmental Assessments: Evaluating potential environmental risks or liabilities associated with the property.
  5. Physical Inspection: Conducting on-site inspections to assess the condition of structures, utilities, and other physical aspects.
  6. Utilities and Infrastructure: Verifying the availability and functionality of utilities, roads, and essential infrastructure.
  7. Financial and Taxation Analysis: Assessing financial aspects, including property taxes, outstanding assessments, and potential expenses.

Legal Considerations:

Property due diligence in Thailand involves adherence to legal procedures and consideration of specific factors:

  1. Thai Land Code: The Thai Land Code governs property ownership, rights, and regulations in Thailand.
  2. Title Search in Thailand: A comprehensive title search is crucial to verify ownership, encumbrances, and other title-related details.
  3. Foreign Ownership: Foreigners have certain restrictions on owning land in Thailand, making due diligence even more crucial to ensure compliance.
  4. Leasehold Properties: Due diligence for leasehold properties involves assessing lease terms, renewability, and any restrictions.
  5. Off-Plan Properties: Due diligence for off-plan properties involves evaluating the developer’s track record, project approvals, and construction progress.

Due Diligence Process:

The property due diligence process in Thailand involves several steps:

  1. Initial Assessment: Gather basic property information and conduct a preliminary assessment.
  2. Title Search: Perform a thorough title search to verify ownership and any encumbrances.
  3. Document Review: Examine property documents, contracts, permits, and relevant legal records.
  4. Site Inspection: Physically inspect the property to assess its condition and compliance with regulations.
  5. Legal Compliance: Verify compliance with zoning regulations, environmental laws, and other legal requirements.
  6. Financial Analysis: Assess financial aspects, including taxes, assessments, and potential costs.
  7. Report Compilation: Compile a due diligence report summarizing findings, risks, and recommendations.

Role of Professionals:

Property due diligence is a complex process that often requires expertise from various professionals:

  1. Legal Advisors: Lawyers familiar with Thai property laws can guide parties through legal complexities.
  2. Real Estate Agents: Experienced agents can provide market insights and assist with property research.
  3. Surveyors: Professional surveyors assess the physical condition of the property and its structures.
  4. Environmental Experts: Specialists can assess potential environmental risks associated with the property.


Property due diligence is a cornerstone of responsible real estate transactions in Thailand. As the real estate market continues to evolve, due diligence ensures that both buyers and sellers are well-informed and protected throughout the process. By uncovering potential risks, verifying legal compliance, and providing transparency, property due diligence contributes to a more secure and thriving real estate environment, enabling parties to make confident decisions while navigating the complexities of property ownership in Thailand.

Property Title Transfer in Thailand

There are usually numerous significant pieces of information and documentation necessary when transferring a property title in Thailand. Here are some significant features and information about Thailand’s property title transfer process:

1. The title deed is the official document that certifies ownership of the property (chanote). Along with the owner’s name, it includes information on the property’s location, borders, and area. Throughout the transfer process, the original title deed must be produced.

2. Identification Documents: To prove their identities, both the buyer and the seller (or their authorized representatives) must produce identification documents such as passports or Thai ID cards.

3. Purchase Agreement: A purchase agreement, also known as a sales contract, is a document outlining the terms and circumstances of the acquisition of real estate. It contains information about the purchase price, the terms of payment, and any unique conditions that both parties have agreed upon.

4. Transfer Fees: The buyer is liable for paying transfer fees, which are ordinarily calculated as a percentage of the appraised value of the property. These charges pay for the office expenses related to the ownership transfer.

5. Taxes: During the property transfer procedure, a number of taxes, such as specific business tax, stamp duty, and withholding tax, may be due. The precise tax requirements depend on elements like the kind of property, how long the owner has had it, and the seller’s tax situation.

6. Due Diligence Reports: It is recommended to carry out due diligence before the transfer to make sure that the property has a clear title and is free of any liens, disputes, or legal concerns. This can entail requesting a report from a lawyer or searching the nearby land office.

7. Receipts and Payment Proof: As proof of the financial transactions related to the property transfer, documentation of payment, such as receipts and proof of money, should be retained.

8. Land Office Procedures: The local land office where the property is located is where the property’s title is transferred. The land office will examine the paperwork, confirm the specifics of the sale, and amend the ownership records as necessary.

9. Legal Representation: It is strongly advised to retain the services of an experienced attorney or a respected real estate agent to ensure compliance with Thai rules and regulations and to expedite a quick transfer procedure.

It’s vital to keep in mind that depending on the location, type of property, and any special circumstances involved, the content and particular criteria for property title transfer may change. To successfully traverse the process, it is advised to obtain expert guidance and help.

Importance of Due Diligence in Thailand

Due diligence is a legal procedure that is used to ensure that everything involved in a business deal is above board and will not cause any problems with the transaction. This includes performing a property inspection and conducting a title deed search before making any purchases.

This is a vital step in any investment, especially when it involves real estate in Thailand. You can save yourself from a lot of headaches and expenses by ensuring that you do your due diligence correctly.

In order to perform a due diligence, you need to find an attorney who is well-versed in the legal aspects of buying and selling properties. These attorneys will be able to verify the property’s legal status and check if there are any legal encumbrances or rights attached to it.

You will also need to ensure that the land has not been encumbered by any of the following: Mortgages, lease agreements, or loans. This is because these can lead to legal problems in the future.

It is also a good idea to check the property’s zoning laws. This can prevent you from purchasing an unsuitable property or paying for a plot of land that is not allowed to be developed.

During the due diligence process, you will also need to make sure that the developer of the property is trustworthy. You will need to ensure that they have passed all of their environmental impact studies and zoning regulations. This will also protect you from any potential lawsuits in the future.

The property can also be inspected to check for drainage problems, road access, and disturbances in the environment. It is also a good idea to ask about the phone and sewage systems so that you can make sure they are functioning properly.

You will need to know that there is no land ownership that has not been registered by the local land office, which means that this can be adjusted or nullified at any time. This is why it is essential to have the title deed of the property inspected to ensure that it has been registered correctly.

Bangkok Law Firm

Bangkok Law Firm

Our law firm in Bangkok are highly-trained experts in their respective fields providing cost-effective solutions to individuals and businesses, always bearing in mind the objectives of our clients. With our staff of legal advisors and law experts, you are assured of only the best.

Offices are strategically located in Thailand.

Bangkok Law Office
Two Pacific Place Building,
142 Sukhumvit Road, Klongtoey,
Bangkok 10110

Phuket Law Office
Moo 5, Bangtao Place
T. Cherngtalay, A. Thalang,
Phuket 83110, Thailand

Pattaya Law Office
Moo 10 Nongprue,
Banglamung, Chonburi 20150

Chiang Mai Law Office
Curve Mall,
215/2 Chang Klan Road,
Muang, Chiang Mai 50100

Koh Samui Law Office
Moo 4, Bophut, Koh Samui,
Surat Thani, 84320

How to find a Law Firm in Bangkok

How to find a Law Firm in Bangkok

A Bangkok law firm is normally registered with the Thailand Bar Council. There is however another unmentioned problem that does occur in Thailand which does not occur in say locations such as Hong Kong. In Hong Kong there are laws in place to allow foreign attorneys, solicitors and barristers to practice law in Hong Kong.

Thailand however is not that open and hence as a foreigner you are not allowed to take up a position as an attorney however you are allowed to be a legal consultant without the right to appear in courts. Hong Kong is not the same as Thailand as one would judge that most if not all laws in Hong Kong are in line with the British legal system where say Thailand is not. The laws would hence not be anything close to the British legal system.

The obvious problem that this creates in Thailand is that there is very little control over legal consultants in Thailand and hence unless they are located in a main stream law firm such as Law Firm in Thailand any incorrect legal advice will have no real recourse to the Thai justice system. When looking for a law firm in Bangkok always search the forums to locate expats who will be able to give you some direction. A few things that you might not know about the Thai legal system is that the concept of ‘trusts’ or trust accounts have no legal standing. There is also no fidelity fund if your attorney runs off with your money and the justice system in Thailand tends to be very slow. Hence your money is lost and any recovery will be slow if not impossible.

Always ask questions from anyone you hire where they have worked before coming to Thailand. Many consultants are nothing more or not even at the standard of what would be considered a paralegal back in your home country – so always be aware of having to seek redress later should anything go wrong.

Thailand Property Awards

Thailand Property Awards

Each year the property awards in Thailand gathers all the major players in the field of property developments and infrastructure development. Attending is the who’s who of the Thai property sector. Law Firm in Thailand attends each year. 2008 was what many had considered a bad year globally for the property, however, judging from the 2009 attendance lists and the number of nominations one is left to wonder where the recession is. The property awards is a good judge of what one might expect in the Thai property market for the year ahead.

In 2008, a selection of anonymous judges from around the country used a scoring system whereby the highest five scorers made the short-list. This year a team of independent judges will produce the short-lists through a consultative process and the panel will be announced publicly.

“It is a significant change this year. We’ve had feedback that people would like to know who the judges are. So this year we will announce the judging panel. We are recruiting the panel now and are being selective to ensure fair representation and no bias. The panel will cumulatively have nationwide knowledge, be both experienced on the Thai real estate industry and in general business, and a number of nationalities will be represented,”

Those short-listed in the development categories will then be contacted and visited by local judging teams in Bangkok, Eastern Seaboard, Phuket, Samui, and Hua Hin, respectively. Following the site visits, the local teams will select the winners.

Following their success in 2008 and involvement in the awards since the beginning in 2006, BDO Richfield Advisory Limited have again been engaged by the organizers to oversee the nomination, entry and judging process, and to ensure all is transparent and fair. BDO Richfield Advisory Limited and the organizers of the awards are not involved in judging the awards