Many of Thailand’s real estate agents and developers will say you do not need a property lawyer when buying Thailand property and real estate.
For more than 10 years we’ve been consistently saying that hiring a Thailand property lawyer is essential, and is a small price to pay for peace of mind.
Incidents where Thailand property purchases go wrong are, thankfully, few and far between but they do happen. With careful due diligence Thailand is no more of a risk than buying property anywhere in the world.
Here are two examples we can share with you.
Several years ago a group of Singaporeans came to Bangkok, cash in hand, to buy several properties. They were unaware of the need for overseas buyers to transfer money into Thailand for property purchases through a Thai bank, and to have it properly documented.
That’s something that even a Google search about “buying property in Thailand” would have revealed, but using an experienced property lawyer would have educated them about the entire buying process.
In this case the Singaporeans still purchased, but they lost out on their preferred units.
Another case involved the wording of the sales and purchase agreement, and is something that an experienced property lawyer can highlight so that you. the buyer, can understand anything that may be initially unclear.
In this situation the word “intention” was used by a property developer with regards to their intention to complete and transfer units by a certain date.
By not clarifying the exact date, the buyer was unable to take immediate legal action against the developer when delays started to happen.
According to experienced property lawyer Paul Bond of SBLaw ASIA, one single word in a property contract could leave the buyer with little recourse.
He said: “Contracts can be written in Thai, written in Thai and English but with neither language given contractual preference, or even written in English without that language mandated as being the operative language.”
All of those contracts depend upon the Thai words used, he added.
“It’s only when English is identified within the contract as being the language of that contract that there can be absolute certainty.”
As we have said before, using a Thailand property law firm really is a small price to pay to ensure you have your legal rights under Thai law completely protected in the event that anything goes wrong.