Mortgages can be required for property purchases. Once completely unheard of, today foreigners can now obtain a mortgage to finance the purchase of a property in Thailand. The Thai government has realized the benefits of foreign funds, but not all banks will lend to this segment. Obtaining a mortgage requires patience.

Lending criteria

The international banks that will lend to foreigners in Thailand include UOB, Bank of China and ICBC. These banks require proof that the applicant can legally reside in the country. Usually at least a one-year working permit is required in addition to a letter from their employer stating the applicant’s position and salary to support their pay slips. Credit checks are also carried out. Applicants will need to be aware that they cannot reach their 60th birthday before the loan expires as Thai banks do not lend to anyone over the age.

The length of most loans is 10 or 20 years. A substantial deposit is usually required for foreigners. These do vary from bank to bank but 40 to 50% is standard. Other lenders like MBK Guarantee can help finance property purchases in Thailand for foreigners.

Off-plan purchases

For off-plan purchases, the payment is staggered. First a booking fee is due once the offer has been agreed to secure the unit. The buyer then has between one and two weeks to pay the deposit of 10% to the developer. Within 30 days the buyer receives the sales and purchase agreement which needs to be signed. Another 10% deposit is due as well and this usually this occurs between 30 to 45 days from the initial payment of the booking fee. The remaining funds are due when the building is complete and the transfer of ownership is carried out at the Land Department.