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Hi

Hoping someone on here can help us. We have a friend in Thailand who has offered us a 30 year lease on a 1 Riel plot of land near Pai. 

It is farm land with no dwellings on it.

Whilst the cost is fairly minimal (around €4000) he has said he does not have the land deed as yet, & once he does the price will double. 

 

Our thoughts are that we could build a house on the plot, ideally a sustainable one that we could heat, cool etc via solar.

 

Putting aside whether it's a good idea or not (still to be completely convinced on that!) There are a couple of practical questions we could do with some help with.

 

Is it even possible to complete this transaction whilst not in Thailand? We're stuck on the UK until May at the earliest.

 

Does the fact he doesn't have the land deed at present mean he doesn't officially own the land? In which case would a leasehold signed prior to the deed being available invalidate it?

 

Thanks in advance.

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Chances are, you are about to get scammed. 

 

Remember that, if it sounds too good to be true it probably isn't. 

 

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Why would the price double after he has the deed? is it because before he gets the deed there is significant danger?  

I think your "friend knows, which is why he is offering the discounted price now. also that he might need the money now, but knows you will not make the move unless there  there is an advantage for you to do so now.

How good a friend is he? How much do you trust him, How risk averse are you? No need to answer any of these question, except only to yourself. I am sure a legal lease agreement can be accomplished, just make sure you do it professionally. 

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4 minutes ago, sirineou said:

Why would the price double after he has the deed? is it because before he gets the deed there is significant danger?  

I think your "friend knows, which is why he is offering the discounted price now. also that he might need the money now, but knows you will not make the move unless there  there is an advantage for you to do so now.

How good a friend is he? How much do you trust him, How risk averse are you? No need to answer any of these question, except only to yourself. I am sure a legal lease agreement can be accomplished, just make sure you do it professionally. 

All very good questions! Thank you!

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120k baht for a rai of farmland is ludicrous in my opinion ! 

 

This stinks! And without the correct paperwork to support sounds like a scam or the bank holds the paper and he's trying to off load it before they seize it. (common)

 

Stay well clear of this if you were in the cou try but long distance would be a catastrophic mistake (IMHO).

 

 

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Just to add that any lease greater than 3 years in duration must be officially recorded on the reverse of the land title deed by the Land Office.

 

If this is not done and the lease tax is not paid then your lease is absolutely worthless, no matter what other documents and promises you are given.

 

The smart person would let you completely build a nice house and then have you arrested for constructing a building on land you have no claim to. You would then have to pay substantial compensation to the land owner to enable them to destroy the house and restore the land back to farmland.

 

Not that the land owner would be obliged to do so. They could keep the house and the compensation.

 

The first rule of any land transaction is to walk away if the land title deeds are not correct. For all you know it's now even the seller's land.

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Thanks all. Whilst he's a good enough friend that we don't think he would try to scam us but of course times are tough for people all over SE Asia & he could easily be looking to make a quick buck.

 

Glad we checked as our gut feel was it was not a good idea even if not a scam!

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1 hour ago, The Carters said:

Thanks all. Whilst he's a good enough friend that we don't think he would try to scam us but of course times are tough for people all over SE Asia & he could easily be looking to make a quick buck.

 

Glad we checked as our gut feel was it was not a good idea even if not a scam!

Or he might not know or have thought of some of the very good points made by Charlie H and Black cab. so perhaps it is worth having a conversation about that with your friend. 

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Make Due Diligences on the land first. Check prices around. Get a lawyer to draft contract and represent you. 

There are 4 different types of ownership for the land, even if he doesn't have Chanote, probably he has Nor Sor 3 which is acceptable too. 

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5 hours ago, The Carters said:

Thanks all. Whilst he's a good enough friend that we don't think he would try to scam us but of course times are tough for people all over SE Asia & he could easily be looking to make a quick buck.

 

Glad we checked as our gut feel was it was not a good idea even if not a scam!

 

Definately not a GOOD idea !

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11 hours ago, The Carters said:

All very good questions! Thank you!

It would double because with a official land deed you can borrow money from a bank.

Without a deed and not being here in Thailand my advice would be this is not really a good friend. 

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On the land next to us on Samui, a Thai Developer offered people portions of the land on which to build, after which he would receive payment for both the land and the constructions then give them the deeds.  All  went well until the last deal when the land owner would not let the developer have the deeds to the land (for whatever reason).  The  developer upped sticks and legged it, having had part of the payment for land and construction.  The person who was hoping to buy the land was left high and dry with no land and a half built construction.  That was about 4/5 years ago and remains to this day as an eye sore in the area.  BE WARNED!

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I would agree with all the above. If the landholder does not have the original paper then the chances are he has been 'loaned' money against the land. The person who loaned him the money (bank or loan-shark) will hold the original paper until the debt is paid.

 

Maybe, just maybe, your friend has an honest intention in that, if you give him the money, he can pay off the loan, get the original paper back, transfer that to you, and still make some money.

 

However, too many things could go wrong.

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21 hours ago, The Carters said:

We have a friend in Thailand who has offered us a 30 year lease on a 1 Riel plot of land near Pai. 

It is farm land with no dwellings on it.

Whilst the cost is fairly minimal (around €4000) he has said he does not have the land deed as yet, & once he does the price will double.

[ ... ]

Does the fact he doesn't have the land deed at present mean he doesn't officially own the land? In which case would a leasehold signed prior to the deed being available invalidate it?

A lease longer than three years duration need to be registered on a title deed (land deed) at the land office to be legal, and tax need to be paid.

 

If the land owner has no title deed, a lease cannot be registered, the land owner might legally not own the land.

 

You will need an explanation from the owner, why he don't have a title deed.

 

To explain that little further, there are several titles of Thai land deeds, and there is also land without any deed, which is land used for farming, legalized by paying yearly tax, but not legally owned, even it might be traded among villagers.

 

Another possibility is that the title deed has been used as security for a loan, which often includes a blank power of attorney, so the creditor legally can take possesion of the land, if the loan is not paid in full. Without a registered lease you have no rights if the creditor takes possession of the land.

 

To build on leased land you need a permission from the owner, and preferable also a superficies servitude, registered on the title deed at the local land office.

 

I will not recommend to "invest" in a house on land without a proper registered leasing agreement; nor without a written permission from the owner in form of a servitude. If you need a building permission, you cannot have it without the owner's permission, and a proper title deed. In worst case scenario a building without the necessary paper work in order, could be ordered removed.

 

€4,000 lease for 1 rai of land, that's about 150,000 bath, is that fee per year?

 

For comparison, 1 rai of farmland used for farming will cost a rent between 1,000 baht and 2,000 baht a year, plus often also land tax (which is very minor).

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On 1/25/2021 at 12:28 AM, The Carters said:

Thanks all. Whilst he's a good enough friend that we don't think he would try to scam us but of course times are tough for people all over SE Asia & he could easily be looking to make a quick buck.

 

Glad we checked as our gut feel was it was not a good idea even if not a scam!

Op, there are no friends  when it comes to money in Thailand, ever.

Run a mile and cross him of the nice guy list.

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