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http://www.realestatethailand.net/templates/realty_wide/img/logo.png Real Estate Thailand http://www.realestatethailand.net/ News Stay updated with Flynax news feeds! Thailand’s house prices rising strongly again Thu, 13 Dec 2018 12:26:32 +0700 http://www.realestatethailand.net/news/house-prices-rising.html

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Thailand’s housing market is strengthening again, with the economy stronger and interest rates low.

The average price of single-detached houses rose by 6.3% (5% in real terms) during the year to Q2 2018, a sharp turnaround from last year’s 3.1% y-o-y decline, according to the  Bank of Thailand (BoT) . During the latest quarter, house prices increased slightly by 0.1% (-0.6% in real terms) in Q2 2018.

  • Condominium prices rose by 4.9% (3.6% in real terms) during the year to Q2 2018, up from a 3.9% y-o-y growth during Q2 2017. However quarter-on-quarter, condo prices dropped 1.7% (-2.4% in real terms) during the latest quarter.
  • Townhouse prices rose by 6.8% (5.5% in real terms) during the year to Q2 2018, a sharp improvement from last year’s 0.7% growth. During the latest quarter, townhouse prices increased 2.5% (1.8% in real terms) in Q2 2018.
 

Land prices are rising strongly. The land price index rose by 7.92% (6.58% in real terms) y-o-y in Q2 2018, in sharp contrast with the 5.5% annual decline in Q2 2017. Quarter-on-quarter, land prices increased slightly by 0.85% (0.2%) in Q2 2018.

Residential construction activity is surging. Nationwide condominium registrations rose sharply by 69% to 53,186 units in H1 2018 from a year earlier, according to the BoT. Condominium registrations were actually about 30% higher in H1 2018 as compared to the last half of 2017.

Demand is robust. Nationwide land and building transactions rose by 5.1% to THB 539.64 billion (US$16.56 billion) in the first half of 2018 compared to the same period last year, according to the BoT. All regions, except the Northern region, saw transactions rose over the period.

CBRE expects the housing market to continue to grow stronger. “The outlook for the end-user residential market will be brighter in 2018,” said CBRE . “Banks have eased lending criteria on mortgage loans, which should increase the buyer’s ability to borrow money and access to mortgage fiannce.”

Thailand´s economy expanded by 4.6% in Q2 2018 from a year earlier, from y-o-y growth of 4.9% in Q1 2018 and 4% in Q4 2017, according to the National Economic and Social Development Board . The Bank of Thailand recently raised its 2018 economic growth forecast for the fifth time to 4.4% from its earlier projection of 4.1% due to rising exports and strong private consumption.

No property bubble

Thailand house price index

Property prices have risen very modestly in Thailand in the past several years, partly due to the country’s prolonged political uncertainty. From 2008 to 2016, house prices rose by just 29.1% (10% in real terms). In 2017, house prices rose modestly by 4% (3.2% in real terms) from a year earlier.

SINGLE-DETACHED HOUSE PRICES, ANNUAL CHANGE (%)

Year Nominal Inflation-adjusted
2009 2.5 -1.0
2010 1.8 -1.3
2011 2.3 -1.2
2012 7.4 3.7
2013 5.0 3.3
2014 6.5 5.9
2015 1.1 2.0
2016 -0.4 -1.5
2017 4.0 3.2
Source: Bank of Thailand (BoT)
 

Real demand, not speculative demand, exists for low-rise housing below THB 3 million (US$92,078), which accounts for 70% of the market, according to Housing Business Association (HBA) president Issara Boonyong. The remaining 30% of demand comes from investors, who buy homes to generate rental income.

Demand remains robust

Thailand condominium registration

Nationwide land and building transactions amounted to THB 539.64 billion (US$16.56 billion) in the first half of 2018, up 5.1% from the same period last year, according to the BoT.

All regions, except the Northern region, saw transactions rose in H1 2018 when compared to H1 2017:
  • Central: THB 344.52 billion (US$10.57 billion), up 2% from a year earlier
  • Eastern: THB 67.24 billion (US$2.06 billion), up 17.4% a year earlier
  • Northeastern: THB 47.76 billion (US$1.47 billion), up 12.1% a year earlier
  • Northern: THB 44.29 billion (US$1.36 billion), down slightly by 0.3% from a year earlier
  • Southern: THB 35.83 billion (US$1.1 billion), up by 14.4% from a year earlier

Residential construction activity surging

Thailand new housing bangkok vicinity

Residential construction activity is rising rapidly. Nationwide condominium registrations rose sharply by 69% to 53,186 units in H1 2018 from a year earlier, according to the BoT. Condominium registrations were actually about 30% higher in H1 2018 as compared to the last half of 2017.

In H1 2018:

  • In Bangkok Metropolis, condominium registrations skyrocketed by almost 118% y-o-y to 30,809 units
  • In other provinces, condominimum registrations rose by 29.2% y-o-y to 22,377 units
 

Likewise, land development licenses in the country also rose by 10.1% to 34,254 units in the first half of 2018 as compared to H1 2017. In Bangkok Metropolis, land development licenses rose by 4.7% to 5,205 units in H1 2018 from a year earlier. In other provinces, land development licenses increased 11.1% over the same period.

The total number of new housing in Bangkok Metropolis and vicinity rose by 8.4% y-o-y to 57,184 units in the first half of 2018, according to the BoT. Over the same period, new apartments and condominium units in the metropolis rose by 4.8% to 29,516 units while housing project increased 22.6% to 17,723 units. On the other hand, self-built housing dropped slightly by 1.6% y-o-y to 9,945 units in H1 2018.

Larger apartments yield more

Thailand land development licenses

According to the latest  Global Property Guide  research, rental yields in the capital, Bangkok, range from 5.0% to 8.0%.

Unlike most countries’ major cities, yields on medium-sized apartments (120 sq. m.) in Bangkok are higher than on smaller apartments.  A 60-square metre (sq.m.) apartment in Bangkok’s central location now earns gross rental yields of around 5.6%, while a 120-sq.m. apartment also centrally located, earns gross rental yields of around 8.0%.

Mortgage lending up; interest rates remain low

Thailand interest rate

Personal housing credits rose by 5.5% y-o-y in 2017 to THB 2.08 trillion (US$63.91 billion), according to the BOT. Total property credits outstanding rose by 5.4% in 2017, to THB 2.71 trillion (US$83.14 billion). In Q2 2018, personal housing credits and total property credits outstandings rose further by 6.2% y-o-y and 5.2% y-o-y, respectively.

Low interest rates continue to buoy property demand. In September 2018, the  Bank of Thailand  kept its benchmark interest rate at 1.5%, unchanged since April 2015, in an effort to “maintain accommodative monetary policy stance to support the continuation of economic growth while preserving financial stability.”

Thailand property credit outstanding

In 2016, the government launched the “ Baan Pracha Rath ” program, mandating state-owned banks, including the Government Housing Bank, Government Savings Bank, and Krungthai Bank, to provide a total of THB 70 billion (US$2.15 billion) of soft loans to both housing developers (pre-finance) and low-to-middle income homebuyers (post-finance). Of which, THB 30 billion (US$921 million) of loans are offered to property developers while the remaining THB 40 billion (US$1.23 billion) are allocated for citizens who purchase residential units at a price not exceeding THB 1.5 million (US$46,000).

Foreign homeownership rules

Foreigners cannot buy land in Thailand, only condominium units and apartments. Foreigners cannot make up more than 40% of the condominium’s unit-owners. However, a foreigner can buy a whole building, minus the land on which it is built.

In recent years, minor changes in Thai law have allowed nonresidents to further explore the Thai real estate market. A foreigner can have a 30-year renewable lease, under which the buyer registers at the Land Office an option to renew the lease contract indefinitely, for further 30-year periods.

There are serious drawbacks to this lease arrangement, however. Lease renewals cannot be registered, and are not effective against a purchaser of the property. And the lessee cannot (without the lessor´s consent) sublease, sell or transfer his or her interest.

Another option is to set up a private limited company with mixed Thai and foreign ownership, the foreign ownership being 49% or less. Companies are allowed to own land. The foreign national can control the company by using a legal power of attorney from the Thai shareholders, handing control to the foreign directors, or through assigning greater voting rights to the foreigner partner/s. This is an effective and time-tested route, most commonly taken by foreigners. The help of a lawyer is very important.

Foreigners can also invest at least THB40 million (US$1.23 million) in a Board of Investment approved project. They will then be allowed to purchase up to 1 Rai (1,600 square meters) of land.

Robust economic growth

Thailand exchange rate

Thailand´s economy expanded by 4.6% in Q2 2018 from a year earlier, from y-o-y growth of 4.9% in Q1 2018 and 4% in Q4 2017, according to the National Economic and Social Development Board . The economy expanded by just an average of 2.8% from 2013 to 2017.

The Bank of Thailand recently raised its 2018 economic growth forecast for the fifth time to 4.4% from its earlier projection of 4.1% due to rising exports and strong private consumption.

The Thai baht has appreciated against the US dollar by 10.5% in the past 3 years, reaching an average exchange rate of THB32.592 = USD1 in September 2018. The baht is now amongst Asia’s best performers, underpinned by foreign inflows and record reserves of more than US$200 billion.

Thailand’s large current account surplus, which is partly driven by its strong tourism, also supports the baht since it means that the nation is less dependent on foreign currencies.

Exports, Thailand’s key economic driver, fell by 5.2% to THB 678 billion (US$20.7 billion) in September 2018 from a year earlier – the first y-o-y decline in 19 months as shipments of automobiles and gold declined amidst the escalating US-China trade war. On the other hand, imports rose by 9.9% y-o-y to about THB 658 billion (US$20.2 billion) in September 2018. This yielded a trade surplus of US$487 million over the same period.

Despite this, exports rose by 8.1% during the first nine months of 2018 compared to the same period last year while imports jumped 15.2%.

Total exports are expected to rise by 8% this year, after last year’s 9.9% growth.

Tourism is also vibrant. In the first nine months of 2018, Thailand welcomed 28,541,887 tourists, up 8.71% from a year earlier.  Likewise, tourism revenues also rose by 10.95% y-o-y to THB 1.49 trillion (US$45.7 billion) over the same period. Tourism accounts for 12% of Thailand’s economy.

The Thai government plans to waive the fee on visa-on-arrival in November and December 2018, in an effort to boost tourism further, especially from China.

In September 2018, inflation stood at 1.33%, a slight slowdown from 1.62% in August and 1.46% in July 2018. Nationwide inflation is projected at 1.1% this year, within the lower band of the BOT’s target range of 1% to 4%, according to the central bank.

Will election finally be held next year?

Thailand gdp inflation

After a series of long delays and broken promises, in September 2018 Thailand’s military government enacted new laws governing the election of 500 members of Parliament (MPs) and the appointment of 250 senators. The new measures require an election to be called between February 24 and May 5 next year.

Despite this, some remain doubtful since the military junta, after coming to power in a coup in 2014, has promised every year to hold an election - but has failed to do so.

“If you ask whether the election will be delayed, well, it is only others who are saying this, not the government,” said Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwan. “ We are still looking at February 24.”

Critics argue that the new Constitution, which was promulgated last April 2017 - with campaigning against it being punishable by 10 years in prison - is aimed at cementing the military junta’s perpetual hold on power. The new Constitution is also designed to limit the power of political parties and with election rules intended to keep any single party from winning a clear majority.

“Despite the claims by the junta otherwise, the new constitution create a permanent place for the military in government and seeks to normalise their intervention,” said Tyrell Haberkorn of the Australian National University.

Also, the new constitution more or less ensures that members of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), the official name of the military junta governing the nation, will not be held accountable for any rights violations committed since taking power.

“The new constitution whitewashes all junta rights violations, ensuring that Thai military leaders can continue to commit abuses without fear of prosecution,” said Brad Adams, the Asia director of Human Rights Watch.

Thailand’s military seized power from an elected government in May 2014, the 12th military coup since the end of absolute monarchy in 1932. Led by the present Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-o-cha, the coup came after several months of protests against the ruling Pheu Thai party and former PM Yingluck Shinawatra. After dissolving the government and the Senate, the NCPO vested both executive and legislative powers in its leaders, and took control of the judicial branch. A nationwide martial law and curfew were declared; political gatherings were banned; opposition leaders and activists were arrested; and media and internet censorship was imposed.

]]> Getting a Mortgage in Thailand Fri, 16 Nov 2018 11:53:00 +0700 http://www.realestatethailand.net/news/getting-a-mortgage-in-thailand-2.html

What You Need to Know About Getting a Mortgage in Thailand Though it used to be that Thai home buyers bought houses primarily with cash, savings or through direct arrangement with sellers; that’s changing as Bangkok and other parts of Thailand become more modernized. Today, many Bangkokians opt for the same style of mortgages that are popular through much of the Western world.
Here are a few things that might be somewhat different about mortgages in Thailand:
 

The Age Factor

One stipulation that Thai banks place on mortgages is that a lender can’t hold a home loan past the age of 60. Thai banks assume that people older than 60 won’t have the income to repay a hefty mortgage. That’s why mortgages must be paid off by the borrower’s 60th birthday.
In other countries, people may continue to work or receive a Social Security or pension that provides plenty of income. In Thailand, however, social security payments are small and fall far short of the amounts needed to repay mortgages.
So, though mortgages are regularly given for 10, 20 and 30 year periods, age must be taken into account when considering what repayment period you are eligible for.
If you are 20 or 30, any repayment period will work for you. If you are 40, you may only choose a mortgage with up to a 20-year repayment period. If you are 50, only the 10-year repayment option will be applicable to you.
 

Terms and Conditions

Though we have covered the repayment periods above, there are still other terms and conditions to consider before applying for or accepting a mortgage.
You need to consider how much of a down payment you can afford and what percentage you need to finance. Most Thai mortgage companies will expect a 30-40% down payment and that you will borrow 60-70% of the home’s value.
 

Foreigners and Mortgages

It used to be nearly impossible for a foreigner to get a mortgage in Thailand. That began to change in the last fifteen years. Today, many banks see loans for foreigners as good for the general economy as well as for their own profits.
Getting approved for a mortgage as a foreigner is tricky but not impossible. It’s a bit more difficult than, say, company registration in Thailand, but much easier than, for example litigation in Thailand.
A few Thai banks offer options for foreigners as do Singaporean banks such as UOB. There are also private lending companies that lend to foreigners such as MBK Group.
The criteria for getting a loan as a foreigner can be strict. Most lending institutions will require that you hold at least a 1-year work permit and a letter from your employer stating your salary and length of service to the company in Thailand. Pay slips, company documentation, credit checks, ensuring that your loan will not exceed your 60th birthday and that your monthly income is three times the amount of the monthly loan repayment are all standard requirements.
 

What Can Foreigners Buy?

The 1979 Thailand Condominium Act allowed foreigners to legally be able to own a condo (or several condos) in the country. The only limit on the law, however, is that foreigners can’t own more than 49% of the units in any one condominium building.
Foreigners can’t own a house since they are not technically allowed to own land in the country. However, most houses lie outside the city and most lenders don’t want to lend for properties upcountry.
 

If All Else Fails…

In case you don’t currently qualify for a mortgage, you might still have other options. Remember, this is Thailand, where there’s a will, there’s a way.
You can set up a lease with the option-to-buy with the current owner and a lawyer. Also, many developers offer direct financing to buyers of their units and the structure will differ depending on which developer you work with.
No matter how you purchase your property in Thailand, make sure you have a qualified attorney, such as the staff at Silk Legal, review that all due diligence is done and that your investment is protected.
 ]]>
Getting a Mortgage in Thailand Fri, 16 Nov 2018 11:48:55 +0700 http://www.realestatethailand.net/news/getting-a-mortgage-in-thailand.html


What You Need to Know About Getting a Mortgage in Thailand

Though it used to be that Thai home buyers bought houses primarily with cash, savings or through direct arrangement with sellers; that’s changing as Bangkok and other parts of Thailand become more modernized. Today, many Bangkokians opt for the same style of mortgages that are popular through much of the Western world.
Here are a few things that might be somewhat different about mortgages in Thailand:
 

The Age Factor

One stipulation that Thai banks place on mortgages is that a lender can’t hold a home loan past the age of 60. Thai banks assume that people older than 60 won’t have the income to repay a hefty mortgage. That’s why mortgages must be paid off by the borrower’s 60th birthday.
In other countries, people may continue to work or receive a Social Security or pension that provides plenty of income. In Thailand, however, social security payments are small and fall far short of the amounts needed to repay mortgages.
So, though mortgages are regularly given for 10, 20 and 30 year periods, age must be taken into account when considering what repayment period you are eligible for.
If you are 20 or 30, any repayment period will work for you. If you are 40, you may only choose a mortgage with up to a 20-year repayment period. If you are 50, only the 10-year repayment option will be applicable to you.

 
Terms and Conditions

Though we have covered the repayment periods above, there are still other terms and conditions to consider before applying for or accepting a mortgage.
You need to consider how much of a down payment you can afford and what percentage you need to finance. Most Thai mortgage companies will expect a 30-40% down payment and that you will borrow 60-70% of the home’s value.

Foreigners and Mortgages

It used to be nearly impossible for a foreigner to get a mortgage in Thailand. That began to change in the last fifteen years. Today, many banks see loans for foreigners as good for the general economy as well as for their own profits.
Getting approved for a mortgage as a foreigner is tricky but not impossible. It’s a bit more difficult than, say, company registration in Thailand, but much easier than, for example litigation in Thailand.
A few Thai banks offer options for foreigners as do Singaporean banks such as UOB. There are also private lending companies that lend to foreigners such as MBK Group.
The criteria for getting a loan as a foreigner can be strict. Most lending institutions will require that you hold at least a 1-year work permit and a letter from your employer stating your salary and length of service to the company in Thailand. Pay slips, company documentation, credit checks, ensuring that your loan will not exceed your 60th birthday and that your monthly income is three times the amount of the monthly loan repayment are all standard requirements.
 

What Can Foreigners Buy?

The 1979 Thailand Condominium Act allowed foreigners to legally be able to own a condo (or several condos) in the country. The only limit on the law, however, is that foreigners can’t own more than 49% of the units in any one condominium building.
Foreigners can’t own a house since they are not technically allowed to own land in the country. However, most houses lie outside the city and most lenders don’t want to lend for properties upcountry.

If All Else Fails…

In case you don’t currently qualify for a mortgage, you might still have other options. Remember, this is Thailand, where there’s a will, there’s a way.
You can set up a lease with the option-to-buy with the current owner and a lawyer. Also, many developers offer direct financing to buyers of their units and the structure will differ depending on which developer you work with.
No matter how you purchase your property in Thailand, make sure you have a qualified attorney, such as the staff at Silk Legal, review that all due diligence is done and that your investment is protected.

 ]]>
What Is The Cost Of Living In Thailand – 2018? Fri, 16 Nov 2018 11:19:46 +0700 http://www.realestatethailand.net/news/what-is-the-cost-of-living-in-thailand.html

Let’s face it, one of the main reasons people move to Thailand is because it’s pretty cheap, and damn awesome, of course.
But while housing is very affordable, food items can be pretty expensive, particularly if you’re partial to imported foods such as cheese, wine, olives and, errr… Marmite.
Branded clothes and beauty products can be pretty expensive too; think Nike trainers and anti-wrinkle skin creams.



But overall, Thailand still ranks as one of the cheapest places to live in SE Asia. Overall, I still find it cheaper than Laos, Malaysia and Cambodia.
I did some pre-research on two cost of living sites, but I found them to be pretty off the mark, particularly when it came to housing.
That said, one took the average across the whole of Thailand, which again isn’t that useful.
So I decided to gander around the shops and compile my own list based on the Bangkok cost of living.
Note that if you’re thinking of living in other cities like Chiang Mai in the North, or Khon Kaen in the Northeast, the cost of housing is likely to be a lot lower. However, supermarket food items and entertainment are likely to be about the same. I’ll discuss this later on, too.
I’ll be adding items to this list and updating it periodically, but if you want to know the price of a particular item or service in the meantime, please let me know and I’ll do my best to research it for you.
Please use the currency convertor to convert from Baht to your native currency.

Food


  • 12 organic eggs – ฿89
  • Semi-skimmed milk (Meji 990 ml) ฿44
  • Cheddar Cheese (Mclelland – UK import) – ฿275
  • Chicken breast 200g (S Pure Healthy) – ฿59
  • Loaf of brown bread – ฿57 Baht
  • Penne Pasta (500g) – ฿55
  • Olive Oil (500ml) – ฿199
  • Litre of Pepsi Cola – ฿20
  • Oreos (standard pack) – ฿30
  • Heineken (490ml can) – ฿59
**Prices sourced from Big C & Topps supermarkets. Please note that as with any country, supermarkets are competitive and pricing varies for different items, albeit by a few Baht.
The cost of food in Bangkok is 56% cheaper than New York

Housing




The following condo rental prices are averages based on a pool of property listings for Bangkok, and on condos within walking distance to an MRT/BTS station.
  • Modern 2 Bed 2 Bath Condo, 65 Sq. m (central Bangkok) – ฿40-45,000
  • Modern 2 Bed 1 Bath 65 Sq. m (4 stops to central – ฿17-20,000
  • Modern 1 bed, 50 Sq. m (central Bangkok) – ฿30-35,000
  • Modern 1 bed, 40 Sq. m (4 stops to central – ฿12-20,000
  • Modern studio, 30 Sq. m (4 stops to central – ฿8,000-9,000
  • Modern studio, 30 Sq. m (central Bangkok – ฿13-16,000
  • Utilities, 1-month, 2 people, 65 Sq. m condo – ฿2500
  • Internet – 16 MB (True) – ฿799
  • Cleaner (per month, 3 x per week) – ฿3,000
The cost of rent in Bangkok is 67% cheaper than London

Clothes


  • 1 pair Levi 501 jeans– ฿3,790
  • 1 summer Maxi dress in Topshop – ฿3,550
  • 1 pair of Nike Air Max ฿2,000- 5,700
  • 1 tailor-made business suit – ฿3,000-8,000
The cost of clothes in Bangkok is 53% cheaper than Sydney

Transportation


  • 1 litre of premium gasoline – ฿41
  • Public taxi trip (8 Km) ฿180 (Base rate ฿35)
  • Uber Black taxi ride (6.5 Km) ฿158
  • Monthly train ticket: BTS – ฿1,100 (Rabbit card) – MRT – ฿1,499
The cost of transportation in Bangkok is 37% cheaper than Berlin

Personal Care


  • Deodorant, Nivea roll-on, (50ml): ฿92
  • 1 box of 16 tampons (Laurie Slim): ฿75
  • Gillette Mach 3 Sensitive (4 blades) ฿459
  • Hair shampoo 2-in-1 (400 ml ~ 12 oz.): ฿89
  • Tube of toothpaste (large Colgate standard): ฿55
  • Nappies: 64 Pc (Mamy Poko medium) – ฿669
  • Toilet rolls (Scott 6 roll pack) – ฿79
The cost of personal care in Bangkok is 73% cheaper than Bern

Entertainment


  • Lunch for 2 (Black Canyon café): 2 coffees, 2 main meals – ฿400 Baht
  • 2 adult tickets to the movies – ฿360
  • 1 cocktail drink in downtown club – ฿250
  • Grande Cappuccino in Starbucks – ฿120
  • 1 beer in neighbourhood bar (500ml or 1pt.) ฿100 Baht
  • 1 month prepaid mobile tariff with 3GB (DTAC) – ฿399 + vat
  • 1 month gym membership at True Fitness (Asoke) ฿2,099 (dependent on sales rep and promotions)
  • 1 package of Marlboro cigarettes – ฿90
The cost of entertainment in Bangkok is 39% cheaper than Paris

So How Much Do You Need to Live in Thailand Per Month?




From my own expenses living in Bangkok, I’d say that presuming you enjoy an average standard of living in Europe or the US, Canada or Australia, you will need the following amount(s) to maintain that standard in Thailand:
  • Single male/female in Bangkok – ฿50,000
  • Couple in Bangkok – ฿75,000
  • Couple with baby under 2 years old in Bangkok – ฿80,000
This includes rent, food, Internet access, gym membership and going out socializing once/twice a week.
If you plan on living up country somewhere, you may be able to shave as much as 30% off these amounts.
If you plan on living in Koh Samui or Phuket, then you can expect to spend about 10-15% less, depending on your drinking habits.
In my experience, you pay less rent on the islands, but eating can be a tad more expensive and you tend to spend more on socializing.
I haven’t lived in Chiang Mai for some time, but when I did I found rent to be about 25% cheaper than Bangkok, with the exception of the high-end rentals in central Bangkok, which are somewhat of an anomaly when looking at the country overall.

A Final Note On Living Costs




If you’re reading this and thinking, “Man, I thought Thailand was a lot cheaper”, don’t let these numbers put you off.
If you don’t mind living in a 27 Sq.m studio apartment, travelling that little bit further into town and aren’t fussed about eating street food and generally living frugally, you can get by on B30-35, 000 a month. There are many teachers living in Thailand on such a salary.
If you’re smart, though, you can make cut backs doing things like buying an Internet phone package and tethering to your computer to save money on home WIFI.
You can buy fruit in bulk from the market instead of buying daily from stalls, or choose to take the Baht bus instead of taxis.
There’s always ways to save money, and at the end of the day, many Thai people live reasonably well on a salary of 20-30,000 Baht.
The way I map out my expenses is by working out what’s required for my family to be happy and enjoy a convenient life.
For example, we  live within walking distance of a tube station, and have the luxury of a restaurant on site at our condo block.
That said, my apartment is a few stops out of central Bangkok – mainly because I wouldn’t want to live in Sukhumvit – but the money we save allows us to take regular holidays and stay in nice hotels.
It’s about finding a balance that works for you.
I don’t drink or smoke, so I save money on buying beer and tabs. I am able to invest this money in having good food at home, which is where a lot of my money goes.
I used to spend a fair bit on the gym, until I found one for less than 2 quid a year.
I have a wife and a daughter, so of course I pay things like medical insurance and life insurance to protect them and give us peace of mind.
So work out what’s important to you; what are your “must haves” and “can do withouts”.
If you’re retired with a tidy pension and savings account, then keeping a tight ship might not be on your agenda. On the other hand, if you have kids or other dependents that will need a nest egg when you walk through the pearly gates, it makes sense to be smart with your money.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that expenses do pop up here and there, and you’ll need to make provision for these: Think visa run/renewal expenses, travel insurance, trips back home replacing a broken phone or computer, etc. So make sure you have some back up savings for emergencies.
 
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Quick Facts For Australians Moving to Thailand Thu, 15 Nov 2018 12:49:23 +0700 http://www.realestatethailand.net/news/quick-facts-for-australians-moving-to-th.html

Given the numbers of Australians moving to Thailand, we thought it important to help these Aussies by putting together a summary of things Australians should know about moving to Thailand.
Thailand, known as the land of smiles, is not as easy to adapt to as it might first seem. Most Australians that decide to move to Thailand have most likely visited the Kingdom on many occasions and fallen in love with the place. However, actually moving here is a completely different kettle of fish. There is no doubt the white sandy beaches, exotic cuisine, and the laid-back carefree pace of life is extremely attractive, but when it comes to settling down for the long-term, there is plenty of red tape to get through as well as cultural shocks that will inevitably come knocking at your door.
That does not mean to say you cannot overcome the quirks of moving to the land of smiles. This article aims to give you a crash course to some of the things you need to prepare for before you move to Thailand.

The Basics at a Glance:

  • Currency: THB or Thai Baht
  • Thailand Population: 68 million people live in Thailand. The country is generally split into 5 regions. The northeast (known as Isaarn) has a population 22.24 million. In the South,29 million people and central Thailand has 20.18 million people. The North is considered as a separate region with 6.31 million people living in and around Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai. Bangkok is considered as its own region in which 10 the population is around 10 million.
  • Weather: There are 3 main seasons in Thailand. Hot, Rainy, and Cool. During the hot season, it can average between 26 °C and 35 °C. In the rainy season around 25 °C to 32 °C and in the cool season 21 °C to 31 °C. This will differ depending on the region of the country you move to.
  • Time Zone: Thailand is set to Indochina Time, which is 3 hours behind Brisbane.
  • Emergency number: It is 191 or 911 for all Thai emergency services. Other numbers apply to different cases – it best to check these out here before you arrive.
  • Electricity: 220 volts, 50 cycles/sec. Plug sockets are reasonably flexible with holes for both flat as well as round prongs. Some sockets will only allow 2 prong plugs; while, more modern sockets have an earth accepting 3 prong plugs. You will need an adapter because Australian plugs will not fit sockets.
  • Religions: Around 94% of the country is Buddhist and 4.6% Muslim. The rest is a mix of Hindu, Christian, and Sikhs. Hill Tribes are mostly animists.

Australians Moving to Thailand: The Things You Need to Know


Immigration

As a farang, the term used for foreigners in Thailand, you have several options for a prolonged stay in Thailand depending on your situation.


Work Permit

For a work permit, you will need to have arranged employment with a local company. Most jobs in Thailand require that you have a university degree; although, there are waivers to this if you have more than 4 to 5 years’ experience in the field of work you are being hired to do. This would require you to submit a letter of employment from your former employer.

You should also note that no matter how skilled you are at a particular profession, some jobs are completely closed to foreigners.

To apply for a work permit, you will need to visit a Thai immigration bureau, which can be found in nearly every province in Thailand. Also, it is worth noting that you will need to make your application at the immigration bureau that serves the area the business that is hiring you is situated, or you will be turned away.


For more information visit the Thai Immigration website


Retirement VISA

Anyone over the age of 55 can apply for a retirement VISA. You will need a letter from a government agency to state your income.
 

 Marriage VISA

As long as you can prove you are earning more than 45,000 baht per month and have a marriage certificate, then you can apply for a marriage VISA.
 

Taxable income bracket (THB)

Tax rate on income in bracket

0

150,000

0

150,001

300,000

5

300,001

500,000

10

500,001

750,000

15

750,001

1,000,000

20

1,000,001

2,000,000

25

2,000,001

5,000,000

30

5,000,001

Over

35


Schools

If you are coming to Thailand with your child or children, then be prepared to pay some fairly expensive school fees if your children are not Thai or cannot speak/read/write Thai. Government schools are free to a certain extent if your spouse is Thai, but the education in Thailand is still in the dark ages.

For those with Thai speaking children, there are plenty of Thai managed private schools to choose from with reasonable fees per term. Some may accept foreign students on their English Program, which is not as expensive as sending your children to an international school.

International schools are extremely expensive. However, because many of these schools teach the Australian curriculum, it does mean your child/children can pick up their Australian education where they left off at home.

The Thai government and private schools have just two terms per year.

  • Term One: May to October
  • Term Two: November to February

International schools generally run on the same term times as the UK with three terms.

 

Healthcare

Thailand’s health care system is not free for foreigners. In fact, it is barely free for Thais themselves. Before you arrive in Thailand, it is imperative that you research the various health insurance options available to you. There are quite a few decent companies offering foreigners health insurance packages that include options for outpatient, inpatient or both. You can also add dentist insurance to these packages.

Check out some of the international medical insurance packages available here.

Shopping, Measurements & Languages

You will need to learn some basic Thai language before you arrive in Thailand because it really does go a long way. Make sure you learn vocabulary for the dialect of Thai spoken in the region you plan to relocate to. The three main dialects that you cannot go wrong with are Thai, Isaarn, and Southern Thai.

As for the metric system, this can be confusing and sometimes no matter how you long you live in Thailand, it still manages to continue to be confusing.

Luckily in the major supermarkets, grams and kilograms are used to make things simple. Otherwise, if you visit a local Thai market, be prepared to understand what half a finger, a handful, or an arm’s length measurement is and the fact that because Aussies tend to be much bigger built than Thais, there is going to be some disagreement here!

Land measurements can also be quite confusing, but to make things simple when determining the size of an apartment or house, this is done in square meters.
 

Day to Day Life For Australians Moving to Thailand

Day to day life in Thailand is close to completely different to Australia. It can vary depending on where you move to in the country and where you are from Australia.

Thailand beach life is generally slow if you live outside of a tourist area. On the other hand, if you are living in a tourist area, then even as a local settled down in the area, you will still be treated like a tourist as sellers try to get you to purchase souvenirs. Swap this for city life in Bangkok, and you will find that there is no city in Australia that can match Thailand’s’ sprawling and very crazy capital.

That being said, it does not matter where you are located, when it comes to daily shopping chores for groceries, you can usually find a local supermarket. You will find the shopping experience not too dissimilar from home with the key difference being that the brands are not the same. Swap the pleasant supermarket experience for a Thai food market and be prepared for all kinds of strange food, strong smells, and a bit of carnage. You will need to also be an expert at haggling with a smile.

Getting around is also relatively easy where ever you are in Thailand. Once you have figured the local transport system, which in many places isn’t obvious at first glance, then you will be able to get around with ease. Taxis, motorbike taxis, tuk-tuks, song tails, buses, and minibusses are available almost countrywide. Plus, there are a few apps you can use to order a personal taxi to your location.
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