a checklist to making a condo renovation in Thailand

Renovating a Condo in Thailand? – Before You Do Read This

Thailand is a country of great promise for foreign condo owners who wish to make this welcoming land their home. Every day there are new budget condos, luxury condos, and ready-to-move-in condotels up for sale in places like Bangkok. However, as a condo owner living in a foreign land, it is important to safe keep your interests in mind especially if you plan to renovate your condo in the near future.

Continue reading to know more about condo renovations in Thailand and 5 important points that can help you save time, and effort and prevent undue stress in the future once completing a condo buy.

You may be interested in this post >>> Things To Keep In Mind While You Buy A Condo in Bangkok.

#1 – Transfer of Property Documents

land title deeds in thailand

The first thing is to make sure that you have all the necessary documents in order.

To purchase a condo in Thailand the transfer of ownership procedure entails a detailed written record of the transaction through a Sale and Purchase dead, fees, and taxes payable to the Land Department and Government.

Without the transfer procedure, and proper protocols in place, the ownership would not be legally transferred despite the buyer and developer having drafted and signed a Sale and Purchase Agreement. 

The time frame for the ownership of a condo to a foreigner, or a house to a Thai national can take anywhere from 30 to 120 days, usually 30 days from the date of the first visit to the local land department’s office. 

To transfer the property legally to a foreign condo buyer, the sale deed has to be stamped by the officials in the Land Department and ID proofs have to be collected and verified by the officials. 

The list of documents for transferring the purchased property is as follows:

  1. Tabien Bann – Property Registration Book
  2. Sale and Purchase Agreement
  3. ID Cards such as Passports of both the buyer and the seller
  4. Land Title Deed registration documents
  5. House building permits
  6. Property Transfer Fees in Full

#2 – Building Permits and Building Codes for Condo Renovation in Thailand

To ensure smooth condo renovation in Thailand, a building permit that is issued by the Bor Tor is a must.

This document is both proof of ownership of the building as well as proof that all permissions have been taken to build and/or renovate the property.

This permit is always submitted to the Land Department at the time of transferring the property and the buyer should contact the condo developer in case he needs more information about this important document. 

Under the Building Control Act, any violations can result in both heavy fines and over 5 years of jail time.

Furthermore, if any violations are noticed then a stop order to work can be placed on the property and the condo owner will have to also make any and all adjustments and rectifications as per the timeline given by the Thailand Land Department.

Failure to rectify the property as per the timeline given can lead to subsequent demolition of the incorrectly renovated parts of the house. 

#3 - Thai Civil and Commercial Code Protecting Condo Owners

Under Section 589 of the Thai Civil and Commercial Code, condo and house owners are protected up to a large extent. For instance, this section demands that it is crucial for the materials supplied by the renovation contractor to be of the best quality according to the agreement.

In the event that the contractor has used sub-par materials, the contractor becomes responsible to pay for damages and defects that occur due to the materials used. Furthermore, unless the agreement mentions a different time frame, the contractor is responsible for a period of 1 year from the competition date of construction.

Additionally, in case the contractor tries to hide the use of sub-par material due to an increased cost factor, then the 1-year limitation is not applicable, especially if a fixed price has been agreed on and signed upon in the contract.

This implies that, if the contractor re-estimates the total amount the condo owner needs to spend while in between working and after agreeing to a price in writing, then the contractor has to use the promised materials and complete the job without any additional costs.

Keep in mind that some contracts are flexible and allow for a 10% to 20% hike in case the material costs change while the renovations are underway. 

#4 – Finding, Hiring, and Paying Contractors For Condo Renovations in Thailand

There is a myriad of options when it comes to finding contractors for condo renovations in Thailand, however, foreign condo owners should be aware of unscrupulous contractors that use both the language barrier and misleading advertisements to get clients.

If a language barrier is an issue, then consider asking one of your Thai friends to translate and deal on your behalf. However, you should ensure that the documentation, bills, and receipts are in your name as you are the condo owner.

Also, make sure that the contractor can prove and verify that he has actually worked on similar projects and can give you at least 5 references of past clients to cross-check with. You can never be too careful!

Since everything is online these days, including portfolios and reviews, you can use this to your advantage.

Checking their work on social media platforms and even any reviews websites like TrustPilot can be beneficial to you.

Do remember to draft and sign a contract that is legally binding, signed by both parties, and attested by a legal body if needed. Choose the terms carefully as if you default on the terms then you could be in trouble.

Make sure that before you renovate your condo, you know the exact size of the property, all building and environmental laws pertaining to the property as well as have all the needed documents in check for a building permit and follow-up checks by officials.

While follow-up checks aren’t the norm, they do happen from time to time, better to be safe rather than sorry! 

#5 – Paying The Contractor for Condo Renovations in Thailand

Usually, contractors would ask for a small fraction of the entire payment as an advance or deposit, and might also request that you pay for the materials before the work commences.

Usually, this amount totals at 25-40% of the entire payment and can be considered a fair request. Under no circumstances should you pay the entire money upfront as this can cause delays in finishing the project, not in all but in some cases at least. 

The payment can be made in cash, wire transfer, or through payment apps, however, collecting receipts is always a good practice despite the chosen method of payment.

While some upcoming contractors might offer a discount for larger projects, always make sure that you compare quotes with 3-5 contractors before choosing the final candidate.

If in doubt, then opt for the services of a managed property solutions company as these companies have a list of verified contractors that work under an agreement.

Failure to complete the work in time is usually not an issue for managed property service companies as they take charge of the project management and handle any and all issues which remove the stress out of condo renovation for you and oversee the build of perfectly renovated condo that has been cleaned, furnished and ready to move into the minute you are to step onto the property. 

Simplifying Your Life in Thailand As A Foreign Condo Owner

If you want to simplify things not only when you need condo renovations in Thailand but also help to manage your property as well then outsourcing property management is a time-saving and cost-effective option.

When you choose to hire a managed property services provider then keep in mind that you can choose short-term or long-term contracts, with a fixed fee for helping you out with renting, maintaining, and keeping the condo as good as new.

You can also choose from a list of added extras like check-in to check-out services for rentals, renovations, fixing breakages, and later on finding buyers to sell your condo to as well. 

We can provide you with an outstanding managed property services company at Silk Estate and we offer multiple solutions for luxury condos in Bangkok and Phuket along with other top locations in Thailand. 

To know more about how we can make your life a lot less stressful while you live in the kingdom of happiness, then drop us a message by contacting us today!

See why 1000s of foreigners are investing in Thailand property >>>

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Chris Wyatt
Chris Wyatt

Chris is an knowledgeable real estate professional with many years experience in promoting and helping people find the right property to buy.

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Disclaimer: This article is not to be taken as legal advice in any form. The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only. If you require legal advice in Thailand you should contact a professional.

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