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Rubber Land In Chanthaburi


jamora

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My dad-in-law is very interested in farming, although he knows nothing about it (he is a doctor in Bangkok), and over the last ten years or so, he has been buying farms in Chanthaburi (rubber and mangosteen), to add a bit to the retirement savings. However, over they last few years, he has actively tried to get his three children interested in farming as well. And eventually, last month he gave my wife a small rubber farm in Chanthaburi, and how could we say no? This leads me to ask two questions, the farm is about 40 rai of 5 years old rubber trees, with a little house on it for the caretaker. It is next to a public road, and has water and electricity installed, and it is about 20-30 min from Chanthaburi town. How much should land like this cost? I know he paid about 7 million baht for the farm, but to me it sound expensive?

My second question, is there any good english books about rubber farming? I wanna read a bit, since he likes to talk about farming, and it would be rude to get a generous gift, and then not give a crap.

And a third question, how much profit can we expect from 40 rai of rubber?

Hope someone with more experience in the field, could give me some clues.

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I dont normally comment on here these days, although still read from time to time.

A couple of years ago I was looking for land in the Chan area, I have commented about that on this forum before.

Depending on the type of title deed held, you can be looking at roughly 300,000 baht per rai, (this was also next to a main road with water and electric) that said it can be as low as 60,000 baht per rai.

The area I looked at was in the Tha Mai area of Chan.

I am not a farmer and have no intention of every being one, at the price mentioned of 300k per rai, I did some maths and decided it wasnt financially viable, others will have differing opinions.

This is a beautiful part of the country.

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OP

Lets see, your FIL is a Doctor and a Thai, probably Thai'/Chinese, lives here and is building up some investments. You on the other hand are a farang and think you know more than he about land and rubber values, ergo he paid too much. Just to be sure you are going to ask a bunch of other farangs to confirm it. Just what I would do if I were looking to buy some land in the west. Find some functional alcoholic Thais and ask them. I am sure your FIL is not stupid and knows what he is about, ask him. Jim

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OP

Lets see, your FIL is a Doctor and a Thai, probably Thai'/Chinese, lives here and is building up some investments. You on the other hand are a farang and think you know more than he about land and rubber values, ergo he paid too much. Just to be sure you are going to ask a bunch of other farangs to confirm it. Just what I would do if I were looking to buy some land in the west. Find some functional alcoholic Thais and ask them. I am sure your FIL is not stupid and knows what he is about, ask him. Jim

I know what you mean, and in general I don't question his judgement, but he believes he knows much more about farming than he does (his wife and children would confirm that any time, even himself sometimes) but as he is the man in the family, they never really question him. And I think it would be rude of me to question him. Then I read some treads here on Thaivisa, and many talked about farmland being around 50,000 per rai, and that just made me wonder (since I know nothing about farming), but as rgs2001uk kindly replied, the price seems to be fair. I always find I good with a second opinion, and one benefit from asking other farangs is that they often do more research, as they are more prone to get robbed off big time.

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OK OP

I have a stinking head cold and am rained in again, I will try to give you a better answer.

First as you may or may not know I am a rubber owner and make my living from it. If you you tube my name you will find videos of mine.

Second, your FIL does not need to know a lot about rubber, he is a doctor, all he needs to know is it a good investment, he, you can hire people who know, that's business. I will hazard a guess that neither you nor your wife are going to be out in the night tapping trees etc.

Third how much did he pay. He will have paid the going rate for that land and trees. I am sure he just didn't go out with a case of money and give it to some guy. He will have been to the bank and used a lawyer, for that kind of money.

Forth how much will you earn. That will depend on you/wife. If you take an active interest, by that I mean be there, good trees. Ball park figure over $30,000 US a year profit. If on the other hand you just leave it to the tappers, you will have tappers driving big four wheel drives and you will get what they give you. Jim

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^^ it's better than 'just farmland' - it already carries the cost of five-years non-production/non-earning

We're in Chanthaburi, our friend the traveling noodle man has been searching for a piece of land for some time, as a local who travels the area every day for his job, talking to people, am fairly sure no one will have been able to get an extra baht out of him for their land. Last week he told us he has just bought 1 rai bare land for 65,000 baht and is happy with that price.

My partner is shopping for land locally - long-term investment and the prices are appreciably higher than where she has land 190km north in Sa Kaeo - there it is sugar, cassava, eucalyptus and some rice - here the returns per rai would I expect be much higher - the established fruit farms - durian, rambutan etc, as well as rubber, dominate much of the area.

We lease a house on land owner by an elderly gentleman, he owns a lot of land on the C'buri city side of TM, including commercial and orchards. He is not selling any - we asked him - confident prices will continue to rise for his children to inherit one day.

It's a rapidly developing area esp coastline, we've seen house sections in Chao Lao from 500k upwards; not saying they have sold for that, but an indication.

I think it's a wonderful place to live.

Edited by Atmos
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Well your fil is no fool that we can be certain about.

My feeling on the matter is that the fil couldnt care less about the fact that there's rubber on there, he has bought in Chanthaburi purely for long term investment. When you say he has given your wife the farm, do you mean the deeds as well, or has he given you a sitting (land) investment to manage and provide you (rather than him) with more stress than income ? If so then the fil's a sharp cookie.

For a pure rubber investment, yes its well overpriced, but i would presume he didnt buy it for that reason alone.

Out of interest what land title is it, Chanote perhaps ?

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Well your fil is no fool that we can be certain about.

My feeling on the matter is that the fil couldnt care less about the fact that there's rubber on there, he has bought in Chanthaburi purely for long term investment. When you say he has given your wife the farm, do you mean the deeds as well, or has he given you a sitting (land) investment to manage and provide you (rather than him) with more stress than income ? If so then the fil's a sharp cookie.

For a pure rubber investment, yes its well overpriced, but i would presume he didnt buy it for that reason alone.

Out of interest what land title is it, Chanote perhaps ?

The deed is in my wife's name, as a way to support his children. But it is in the area where he has several other farms, so I guess he hopes that we sometimes will go and look after their farms, since we probably have to check up on our own anyway. I don't know the type of land title, but I'll try to see if my wife knows. Again, we know very little of this whole thing, and I hoped to get some input from this forum.

What is the difference between the various land titles?

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The deed is in my wife's name, as a way to support his children. But it is in the area where he has several other farms, so I guess he hopes that we sometimes will go and look after their farms, since we probably have to check up on our own anyway. I don't know the type of land title, but I'll try to see if my wife knows. Again, we know very little of this whole thing, and I hoped to get some input from this forum.

What is the difference between the various land titles?

There are differences as to ownership rules for Thais for various (weaker) land titles. Some titles can only be owned by Thai proletariat and on a few rare occasions land has been "reassigned" if the rules are broken.

Your wife owns the land and my understanding is that your interested in the idea of farming but not really committed to it as a complete lifestyle change. Coupled with the fact that both you and your family have no experience in rubber, I would give you the following advice to keep your sanity and no its not to sell,laugh.gif

In some instances where you have an absentee landowner, i have seen the Thais operate two alternate ways of having their farms "managed" :

1. Managing agent.

There are some farms that allow the farm to be managed by an agent who obtains a % of the income. Usually you will find that the agent will be managing three or more farms in the area, organising everything from staff to selling.

Without a doubt you will get "slippage" screwed as the yanks say, but how much is down to you and your involvement/appointment of the agent.

2. Lease

This would be my preference in your shoes.

Again in Thailand, some farms are leased out, lock stock and barrel and for your size i would estimate (once the trees are producing) you should get around 400,000bht per year leasing it out as a going concern and without having any of the associated problems of checking weekly returns.

The pitfalls to this is that if you lease it to a waster, they will not fertilise the trees properly, do too many and too large cuts and respect the trees similar to how a student respects his rented digs.

Again, its down to you to get the contract right and lease to the right person.

Your obviously weighing up your options which is a good way to tackle the issue rather than going in all guns blazing, good luck.

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well, for the kind of income Jim proposed, once tapping starts, i would sure want to get involved, hands on, with as much as i could.

if not me, then wifey, or someone else family i could trust. what the hell, around 75.000 baht+ a month is a lot of money here, for lots of ppl, thai especially.

the bright side, you have about 2 yrs before tapping to start, so, plenty time to make up your mind, do some research, learn the basics, etc.

i sure wouldnt like to "waste" 500.000 baht a year leasing it out ( leasing out tothemark number 400.000 vs managing Jim's number 30.000USD+ or about 900.000thb+ )

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I am no expert but I would say the FIL is quite bright with this investment. After all his other options are buying rental properties (he may already have some of these too), investing in the SET (risky to put too much money in a small exchange) or just putting the cash in a 2-3 percent long term interest investment. I am not sure if it is true or not but I have heard it is difficult for Thais to invest offshore and the mutual funds that mirror offshore are relatively new and have high MERs. All in all I think a good investment considering his options. And as far as I am concerned that is one hell of a nice gift that I would not be looking in the mouth.

The land I bought was much less expensive but it had no trees and is of dubious title (not even a sor por kor, yikes!). I am sure I would have paid about 4 or 5 times more if it was chanote. I think actively managing the farm for a while and then handing it off to a manager is a great idea. If you are actively involved you will have a better idea on what your production expectations should be. After you hire a manager, I would suggest paying him relatively well but let him know you have (reasonable) expectations around yield and that if they aren't met you will soon be looking for his replacement. Then if he finds ways to up yield while he is stealing from you, at least you will receive your target revenue. I would target based on kilo's rather than Baht though as the price will be out of his control. Make sure he keeps daily records and records all sales, kilo's and Baht.

In any event roll with it and have fun. After all it was a gift, even if you don't make the $30,000/year, you are still well ahead of where you were before receiving the farm.

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OK OP

I have a stinking head cold and am rained in again, I will try to give you a better answer.

First as you may or may not know I am a rubber owner and make my living from it. If you you tube my name you will find videos of mine.

Second, your FIL does not need to know a lot about rubber, he is a doctor, all he needs to know is it a good investment, he, you can hire people who know, that's business. I will hazard a guess that neither you nor your wife are going to be out in the night tapping trees etc.

Third how much did he pay. He will have paid the going rate for that land and trees. I am sure he just didn't go out with a case of money and give it to some guy. He will have been to the bank and used a lawyer, for that kind of money.

Forth how much will you earn. That will depend on you/wife. If you take an active interest, by that I mean be there, good trees. Ball park figure over $30,000 US a year profit. If on the other hand you just leave it to the tappers, you will have tappers driving big four wheel drives and you will get what they give you. Jim

...lol Jim ...A good ball park figure...unless rain stops play...hope your taking "something" for that cold...

....yes it's pissing down here in the south too..only got 12 days cutting this month so far....been "dropping" a few ccs of 5% acid and some leaf concoction solution in cups an hour or so after cutting to harden/coagulate between deluges.( MIL idea.. made up in big bucket)...works well..saved most of the latex!

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OK OP

I have a stinking head cold and am rained in again, I will try to give you a better answer.

First as you may or may not know I am a rubber owner and make my living from it. If you you tube my name you will find videos of mine.

Second, your FIL does not need to know a lot about rubber, he is a doctor, all he needs to know is it a good investment, he, you can hire people who know, that's business. I will hazard a guess that neither you nor your wife are going to be out in the night tapping trees etc.

Third how much did he pay. He will have paid the going rate for that land and trees. I am sure he just didn't go out with a case of money and give it to some guy. He will have been to the bank and used a lawyer, for that kind of money.

Forth how much will you earn. That will depend on you/wife. If you take an active interest, by that I mean be there, good trees. Ball park figure over $30,000 US a year profit. If on the other hand you just leave it to the tappers, you will have tappers driving big four wheel drives and you will get what they give you. Jim

...lol Jim ...A good ball park figure...unless rain stops play...hope your taking "something" for that cold...

....yes it's pissing down here in the south too..only got 12 days cutting this month so far....been "dropping" a few ccs of 5% acid and some leaf concoction solution in cups an hour or so after cutting to harden/coagulate between deluges.( MIL idea.. made up in big bucket)...works well..saved most of the latex!

David, you are right about the rain, it's been a bitch this year. Did think of going over to cup and pouring in a bit a formic acid , but the tappers have been doing a great job of tapping in dry hours then running around collecting the latex. Looks like we will be down 700 kilos or so, but will still make enough to get by. Just have to hope the weather is better for the next tapping month. Jim
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Hi David, I'm in Ranong, you have had more tapping days than us. Didn't rain much last night, but the trunks are so wet from the rain in the daytime. Am I glad I have my company pension. Dreading the drive down to Nakhon on Sunday if it's raining like it has been here.

ps OP Land prices can be like a piece of string. Title to how desperate the seller is all play a part.

Edited by Mosha
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Thank you for all your replies, it has been very helpful.

It sounds like our best option is to keep the land, learn the basics of rubber farming, and try to manage it ourselves. And if all fails, we should rent out the land annually.

Just to get an idea, if we try to manage it ourselves, does it require us to go and check up once a week, once a month, or how often should we be present to make sure that the caretaker does not keep all the money to himself?

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Thank you for all your replies, it has been very helpful.

It sounds like our best option is to keep the land, learn the basics of rubber farming, and try to manage it ourselves. And if all fails, we should rent out the land annually.

Just to get an idea, if we try to manage it ourselves, does it require us to go and check up once a week, once a month, or how often should we be present to make sure that the caretaker does not keep all the money to himself?

jamora That's not a question about rubber, that's a question about life, who can you trust with money. You have 2 things going against you to start. You are a farang and don't count and I will take it that your wife is from BKK, not local. So in the locals eyes she is no better than you.

As the trees are not producing now, you only need to make sure that the plantation is being taken care of and that the fertilizer you pay for goes on your trees not someone elses.

When the rubber flows, a different game. Don't think of it as a rubber plantation, lets say in your home country you have a tree that grows money. This magic tree does not grow the same amount of money everyday. Some days there is nothing, some days there a bit and on other days a lot. Different times of year it grows more or less. Now you are not going to be there to collect the money, but want to hire a man to pick the money and give it to you. You don't know how much money has grown that week, month etc. You have to trust the money picker to be honest. Well I know many who would not trust their brother, never mind some guy you hired of the street.

Moral of the story is if you are not there all the time, your money is in a strangers hands. Maybe you are rich enough not to worry. Jim

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Jim in his eloquent way has has given you the key to not losing you arse quickly in Thai farming. Most of the old timers are passing alone what has been learned the hard way. On site every day, 7 days a week. OK, a holiday now and again, when nothing is being done and all equipment is under lock and key.

My wife's family is comprised of 6 brothers and sisters, the MIL and FIL have died. I have only trusted 3 of the group and 2 are departed. This average does seem to reflect most people I have dealt with throughout my life, here and in the real world. I am not going to give the secret of which of the 6 siblings I trust, just to keep people guessing.

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We, and I use the term loosely :whistling: . Had 2.5 Rai about 5 mile away, and I'm glad we sold it before the rubber came on line. The 25 rai we have trees producing on is right across the road. Trust has to be earned, and with the rubber I trust none of the siblings and cousins. I've more trust in the Burma, fortunately my wife and I agree on this. If I can't see it, I'd be fretting about being cheated.

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I just figure that no matter what I do I will still get "cheated" somewhat. Provided I still make reasonable returns I am not to worried about it, if they start to take the piss that's when we will sell. Thus far the everything appears to be above board but until the rubber starts to flow its difficult to know how the fam damily will behave.

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I just figure that no matter what I do I will still get "cheated" somewhat. Provided I still make reasonable returns I am not to worried about it, if they start to take the piss that's when we will sell. Thus far the everything appears to be above board but until the rubber starts to flow its difficult to know how the fam damily will behave.

My missus looks after evrything for us as of course I'm not allowed to own anything and she has 3 brothers and 5 sisters (1 no longer with us) and she trusts not one of them. She is always telling me that i trust too many people too much of the time. As for the above statement about "until the rubber starts to flow", I think you shoulkd re-read Jim's comment (analogy) of the tree growing money not rubber and then you may understand that no-one cares about rubber but money now that's a different matter.

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As for the above statement about "until the rubber starts to flow", I think you shoulkd re-read Jim's comment (analogy) of the tree growing money not rubber and then you may understand that no-one cares about rubber but money now that's a different matter.

My point was, it is pretty easy to keep track of whats going on for now as the trees are not producing yet. Once they start producing things will get more interesting because the opportunities for theft will increase tenfold.

My wife is tighter with the purse strings than I am as well. We are lucky though, it looks like only half the family are untrustworthy. My wife's mom pretty much runs the show and she figures that I and the missus have helped out enough so she keeps the brood in line. If she weren't there it might be a different story. My wife and I are both ready to sell at a moments notice if things start to go sideways and the land is already worth much more than we bought it for so I am not too worried.

I may move to the farm and directly manage it once it starts producing anyhow. Just enjoying mucking about with the farm to date. If I was relying on it for retirement or something like that I would be much more concerned.

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Hi all again

On the subject of trust, with family or workers. I trust mine to do the right thing. I am not on site 7 days a week, have 4 separate plantations. I do not sit looking over their shoulders, I let them do there job, but I can tell you within a kilo or 2 how much rubber each plantation will produce each tap. If you tell me how many full tapping days we will have in a certain month I can tell you how many kilos of rubber we should get.

I go out on my motorbike once or twice a week and turn up and have a look at what's happening. The workers know I know how much rubber should be there and if the take is down I want to know why. We have got rid of 4 tappers in 2 years. On selling day the wife, who keeps the books and the BIL will weigh the rubber and she will say how much do you think and I am usually within 50 kilos of what's there.

If you start tapping and are on top of every thing to start, things get easier as you go. It's a learning curve, but if you know your trees it's hard for anyone to slip any rubber away.

Once in awhile I will take my hammock out to a plantation and stay the night, if that day the take is up you know something is amiss. Your tappers will get the message and they will fall into the routine. It's all about people skills and as I said in rubber 101 if you have a good tapper take care of him. When one of them comes to me because they are short of money for something, I will lend it. I know I will get my money back as I pay them. If one needs time off while his wife has a baby or something, we help out.

You earn respect and loyalty it's not a given. Jim

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Hi all again

On the subject of trust, with family or workers. I trust mine to do the right thing. I am not on site 7 days a week, have 4 separate plantations. I do not sit looking over their shoulders, I let them do there job, but I can tell you within a kilo or 2 how much rubber each plantation will produce each tap. If you tell me how many full tapping days we will have in a certain month I can tell you how many kilos of rubber we should get.

I go out on my motorbike once or twice a week and turn up and have a look at what's happening. The workers know I know how much rubber should be there and if the take is down I want to know why. We have got rid of 4 tappers in 2 years. On selling day the wife, who keeps the books and the BIL will weigh the rubber and she will say how much do you think and I am usually within 50 kilos of what's there.

If you start tapping and are on top of every thing to start, things get easier as you go. It's a learning curve, but if you know your trees it's hard for anyone to slip any rubber away.

Once in awhile I will take my hammock out to a plantation and stay the night, if that day the take is up you know something is amiss. Your tappers will get the message and they will fall into the routine. It's all about people skills and as I said in rubber 101 if you have a good tapper take care of him. When one of them comes to me because they are short of money for something, I will lend it. I know I will get my money back as I pay them. If one needs time off while his wife has a baby or something, we help out.

You earn respect and loyalty it's not a given. Jim

Listen up guys...Jim is on the money as usual....no free lunches ..

....I have fridge magnet on my beer fridge that says "if it's to be it's up to me"..says most of it...

Need to get one with "who'll stop the !@#$%^&* rain?"

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Hi all again

On the subject of trust, with family or workers. I trust mine to do the right thing. I am not on site 7 days a week, have 4 separate plantations. I do not sit looking over their shoulders, I let them do there job, but I can tell you within a kilo or 2 how much rubber each plantation will produce each tap. If you tell me how many full tapping days we will have in a certain month I can tell you how many kilos of rubber we should get.

I go out on my motorbike once or twice a week and turn up and have a look at what's happening. The workers know I know how much rubber should be there and if the take is down I want to know why. We have got rid of 4 tappers in 2 years. On selling day the wife, who keeps the books and the BIL will weigh the rubber and she will say how much do you think and I am usually within 50 kilos of what's there.

If you start tapping and are on top of every thing to start, things get easier as you go. It's a learning curve, but if you know your trees it's hard for anyone to slip any rubber away.

Once in awhile I will take my hammock out to a plantation and stay the night, if that day the take is up you know something is amiss. Your tappers will get the message and they will fall into the routine. It's all about people skills and as I said in rubber 101 if you have a good tapper take care of him. When one of them comes to me because they are short of money for something, I will lend it. I know I will get my money back as I pay them. If one needs time off while his wife has a baby or something, we help out.

You earn respect and loyalty it's not a given. Jim

Listen up guys...Jim is on the money as usual....no free lunches ..

....I have fridge magnet on my beer fridge that says "if it's to be it's up to me"..says most of it...

Need to get one with "who'll stop the !@#$%^&* rain?"

Well in Australia people used to say Hewie was the man who controls the rain, as in "Bring it down Hewie!" So I suppose here it is also "Up to Hewie"

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Hi all again

On the subject of trust, with family or workers. I trust mine to do the right thing. I am not on site 7 days a week, have 4 separate plantations. I do not sit looking over their shoulders, I let them do there job, but I can tell you within a kilo or 2 how much rubber each plantation will produce each tap. If you tell me how many full tapping days we will have in a certain month I can tell you how many kilos of rubber we should get.

I go out on my motorbike once or twice a week and turn up and have a look at what's happening. The workers know I know how much rubber should be there and if the take is down I want to know why. We have got rid of 4 tappers in 2 years. On selling day the wife, who keeps the books and the BIL will weigh the rubber and she will say how much do you think and I am usually within 50 kilos of what's there.

If you start tapping and are on top of every thing to start, things get easier as you go. It's a learning curve, but if you know your trees it's hard for anyone to slip any rubber away.

Once in awhile I will take my hammock out to a plantation and stay the night, if that day the take is up you know something is amiss. Your tappers will get the message and they will fall into the routine. It's all about people skills and as I said in rubber 101 if you have a good tapper take care of him. When one of them comes to me because they are short of money for something, I will lend it. I know I will get my money back as I pay them. If one needs time off while his wife has a baby or something, we help out.

You earn respect and loyalty it's not a given. Jim

Brilliant post Jim

That is exactly how I hope to manage my farm once it starts producing. Be involved and know what is going on but not micro-manage and watch people work 24/7.

Good on ya.

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Dakling, be careful how well you organize things. You may find, like me that you are surplus to requirements and have nothing useful to do. I am at the point where I down load a new book every 2 days. I have been pulling my none existent hair out this wet season, trying to come up with a project to fill in my time and alcohol is not the answer. Jim

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Dakling, be careful how well you organize things. You may find, like me that you are surplus to requirements and have nothing useful to do. I am at the point where I down load a new book every 2 days. I have been pulling my none existent hair out this wet season, trying to come up with a project to fill in my time and alcohol is not the answer. Jim

I've gotten my tapping running on remote control so far, it's only in the first year and one section. Next year will be another section opened up. It's no different from my job in the oil patch "Trust, but Verify" I trust my tapper but he gets checked up on by my four main farm workers who just happen to pop by to hunt frogs and snakes and pass the time of night. I'll jump on the quad and go check the ropes on the trees and while I'm at it run up and down the lines checking the cups.

I wish I had your problem of nothing to do Jim, my little guy was born 6 weeks ago and the wife and I are running on severe sleep deprivation. But I'm looking to the day when he can come in the jeep or quad with me and check his trees.

Ken

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Dakling, be careful how well you organize things. You may find, like me that you are surplus to requirements and have nothing useful to do. I am at the point where I down load a new book every 2 days. I have been pulling my none existent hair out this wet season, trying to come up with a project to fill in my time and alcohol is not the answer. Jim

I've gotten my tapping running on remote control so far, it's only in the first year and one section. Next year will be another section opened up. It's no different from my job in the oil patch "Trust, but Verify" I trust my tapper but he gets checked up on by my four main farm workers who just happen to pop by to hunt frogs and snakes and pass the time of night. I'll jump on the quad and go check the ropes on the trees and while I'm at it run up and down the lines checking the cups.

I wish I had your problem of nothing to do Jim, my little guy was born 6 weeks ago and the wife and I are running on severe sleep deprivation. But I'm looking to the day when he can come in the jeep or quad with me and check his trees.

Ken

Congratulation on the new arrival He must be more farang than Thai, as my 2 were so peaceful at night I thought there must be something wrong. Have to say they have made up for there quite start by turning into wild jungle kids now. JIm
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