Buy Land In Pattaya or Phuket - Foreigner Land Ownership Rights

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Buy Land in Pattaya Beach ( Wongamat, Pratumnak Hill, Jomtien Beach, Huay Yai, East Pattaya) and Phuket (Patong Beach, Outlying Islands)

If you are looking to buy land in Pattaya or Phuket, we can assist you. Whether you are interested in land zoned for residential or commercial use, we have many options. If your purpose is to build a private house in the country or a hotel or condo directly on the beach, our team can fulfill your requirements.

Pattaya Land Ownership by Foreign Nationals

The first thing a foreigner (non Thai citizen) needs to know about owning land in Pattaya, Phuket or Thailand in general is that under strict application of the existing law it is officially prohibited for foreigners, including both individuals and juristic entities (e.g., companies or partnerships), to own land in Thailand. However, there are exceptions to the prohibition found in the law itself. There are also other methods of arranging for the purchase of land in Thailand.

The Land Code has been amended to allow foreigners to own land if all of the following requirements are met:

  1. The land is for residential purposes.
  2. The land does not exceed one rai (in area; see conversion to western units below).
  3. No less than 40 million baht is remitted into Thailand for investment.
  4. Foreigners abide by Ministerial Regulations governing the nature of the business that the foreigner will engage in, the period of time for maintenance of the investment, and the location of the land owned.
  5. Permission is granted by the Board of Investment (BOI). According to section 97 of the Thai Land Law, the definition of a foreigner includes a Thai registered company or partnership in which more than 49% of the capital is owned by foreigners or of which more than half the shareholders or partners are foreign citizens.

Note that BOI approval for such land ownership by foreigners is very rare

Legal Structures Foreigners May Pursue for Using & Controlling Land in Thailand

172 Land in Bang SareSo how can a foreigner "own" land in Pattaya, Phuket or throughout Thailand? One of the most effective (and 100% legal) ways to acquire land is to “purchase” the land on a 30-year leasehold with an option to extend the lease for subsequent 30-year periods. Leases are limited to 30 years, except on land for industrial purposes or commercial leases, which may be established for 50 years. Similarly, lease extensions are capped at 30 and 50 years respectively. Possession of the land leased for an already owned building is protected by the fact that the building rests on the land; ownership of the building is separate from the land and cannot be seized by the lessor once the lease expires.

Leases exceeding three years are enforceable for only three years unless they are registered with the Land Department. Therefore, a 3-year or longer lease must be registered with the Land department. There is a 3% tax by the Land Office on the value of the lease to register control of land through a long-term lease in Pattaya or Phuket. In addition, a lease continues to be valid even in the event the property on the land is sold.

168 Lakefront Land in PattayaAnother method foreigners can employ is to form joint venture companies with majority Thai ownership but with adequate safeguards to protect the foreigners' minority interest. If a foreigner plans to run a business in Thailand then he may purchase the land freehold through his Thai majority limited company. The land will be owned by the Thai Company, not by the individual. It is important that the non Thai minority shareholder should not own more than 38%, as any foreign shareholding structure greater than this is normally investigated by the Land department.

Land can be controlled through the right of possession or through title deeds and other documentation. The strongest form of evidence for ownership of land is a title deed (Chanote or Nor Sor 4). These title deeds must be registered at the Land Department in the province in which the land is located. It should also be noted that a parcel of land may be commonly held by several individuals. A person whose name appears on a Chanote, or Land Title Deed, has all the legal rights to that land, can produce the deed as evidence of ownership to Government officials, can prove the land has clearly defined boundaries, and can engage in legal acts upon that land as allowed by law.


Begin Your Pattaya Land Search Here

Now that you understand a bit about owning and buying land in Pattaya, Phuket or anywhere in Thailand, you can begin your search. Start by searching for land by selecting a neighborhood and filling in price range and plot size options. Note that when you type in plot sizes, you should enter the number of Rai you want to acquire.           173

Land conversion factors as follows:        

  • 1 Rai = 1,600 square meters
  • 1 Rai = 17,222 square feet
  • 1 Rai = 0.395 acre
  • 1 Rai = 0.16 hectare

Can't find what you're looking for? We can customize a search for you.

If you don't find what you're looking for in our property search, we are well connected with various land brokers and village (tambon) leaders, most of whom speak Thai. It can be quite difficult to find the actual land owner, so let us navigate that process for you. Tell us what you need and we can find what you're looking for. The property owner normally pays our commission, but we also will work as a Buyer's Broker if you prefer that we represent you directly.

Call Michael at +66 (0)89-685-2198 or write to for professional assistance in your Pattaya land search.