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Phuket Property Land Titles – 4 Titles You Should Know About Before You Buy

Phuket Property Land Titles

Phuket property land titles can be a bit confusing, so here's the basics of what you need to know.

As a Phuket property buyer, it's important to know which of the Phuket property land titles give you the registrable right of ownership or lease.

Not all of Phuket Island has been accurately surveyed so comprehensive titling does not exist.

As such, anyone who wants to buy property in Phuket needs to make absolutely sure the land comes with a Chanote, a Nor Sor 3, a Nor Sor 3 Gor or a Condominium title.

These are the only Phuket property land titles that can be sold, leased and or used as mortgage collateral.

They are also the only titles over which a registrable right of ownership or lease can exist.

The first 3 in the list are also the only Phuket property land titles where you can legally obtain approval to build.

Once again, we strongly suggest you seek good legal advice before you buy or lease anything.

Phuket Land Titles – Chanote

In the hierarchy of land titles, the Chanote (officially known as Nor Sor 4 Jor), is the only true land title deed.

As such, the Chanote is the most secure of the Phuket property land titles, since the certificate is official proof of the ownership of land.

The Phuket Provincial Land Office issues it, and the surveyed boundaries are officially recognised.

Phuket Land Titles – Nor Sor 3

A Nor Sor 3 is a document, which certifies the legal right to use a piece of land for a particular land use.

The District Land Office issues the Nor Sor 3 to the owner of the land. However, a Nor Sor 3 does not on its own prove ownership.

Possession of a Nor Sor 3 does however give you the legal right to occupy the land in question providing you are adhering to the land use stipulations.

The disadvantage of a Nor Sor 3 is that it has not been properly surveyed. As such, the boundaries on the Nor Sor 3 map are recorded according to its neighbouring plots.

As such, it is a "floating map" and has the potential to cause boundary disputes.

Phuket Land Titles – Nor Sor 3 Gor

The Nor Sor 3 Gor is very similar to the Nor Sor 3, except that in general, a Nor Sor 3 Gor's parcel points have been determined using 1:5000 scale aerial photography.

A Nor Sor 3 Gor "survey" is therefore more accurate than a Nor Sor 3, and each plot is crossed referenced to a master survey of the area.

Because of this, the boundaries of the land are verifiable. However, it is still not as accurate as a Chanote.

Phuket Property Land Titles – Condominium Title

Buildings in Thailand don't usually have any form of title document.

Condominiums are different.

A condominium title is a title to a part of a building or buildings with multiple owners.

The title covers your fractional interest in the land. It also covers your interest in the common assets (such as the pool and gym etc.), as well as other common parts of the building, such as the stairwells and lobbies.

When you purchase a condominium unit, the title you receive will state the floor area of your apartment. It will also state the ground area of the common land within the condominium development, and the percentage interest the apartment has in the common property.

The percentage interest of your condominium unit represents your voting interest in the management of the development.

Phuket Property Land Titles – Building Transfers and Leases

For all buildings other than condominiums, proof of ownership or a long lease can be established by depositing the necessary documentation at the District Land Office (Amphoe).

Proof of ownership can be established either through proof of construction or the "bill of sale" you receive from your lawyers once the transaction is complete.

Proof of a long lease is demonstrated by the leasing agreement your lawyers draw up and the owner and you sign.

Transfer of building ownership, as distinct from land ownership, requires public notice of the transfer for 30 days, to allow the transfer to be contested.

Be sure to do this prior to signing and handing over any money to prevent long legal battles.

As we have said previously, we strongly suggest you seek good legal advice before you sign anything.

Apart from the land title considerations, you should be aware of the property ownership restrictions for foreigners, as well as the land and property taxes, and tenancy laws if you wish to rent your property after purchasing.

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