Researching your second home choices in Thailand often means you encounter the Thai laws in which you cannot own property in Thailand. You can own a house which sits on a plot of land as long as you have the right documentation proof and show that money did exchange hands for the purchase. In terms of a plot of land your only option is to lease the property. Foreigners in Thailand can lease the land for 30 years. A standard lease contract will include two renewal options, which can extend the lease further than 30 years. The contract can even state that there is a purchase option; however, it is best to look at the options based on whether they can be enforced or not.
The leasehold is definitely used often in Thailand with foreigner buyers and property developers. The leasehold gives rights to the person leasing the land stating that they have a rental agreement for the plot of land. Land lease in Thailand is available for short or long term lease up to 30 years. Currently for commercial or industrial property foreigners can lease the property for up to 50 years.
All plots of land are regulated by the Thai Civil and Commercial Code or CCC. With limited exceptions land ownership is prohibited. It means unless the Minister of the Interior grants special permissions you cannot own land as a foreigner in Thailand. The land lease is not the same. You have the option of a land lease by entering into the leasehold. This is better than a sale and purchase agreement since land cannot be sold to a foreigner.
The leasehold gives most of the rights to the lessee meaning the land owner has the rights regarding their property and how it is used. The concept of the leasehold is to make it like a freehold ownership, but a landlord can decide to exert their rights making things difficult for the person leasing the land.
Leases are uncomplicated when you have a trustworthy lawyer dealing with the paperwork. You want the lawyer to work for you and write the document. If the landlord does not accept the typical leasehold you may want to avoid going through with it. You should definitely have a copy of the leasehold read to you so that you may understand what it states. The lease does need to be registered with the correct civil office to show that the title has an addendum providing permission for a specific term for someone to lease the land. It is a document that also makes it impossible for a foreigner to try and put a lien against the land.
The registration fee and a stamp duty of 1.1% is due during the registration of the leasehold. You have to pay 1.1% of the total rental due based on the term of the lease. There are other situations such as house ownership in which you actually own the house on the land. You can use a superficies to distinguish the different ownership. You can also sell the house, but the new owner has to sign a lease or remove the home from the land.