Guide to Selling Your Property Fast in Bangkok

This article will offer a practical guide to ensuring sellers can find a buyer in the shortest amount of time at an acceptable selling price!

Bangkok’s real estate market is dynamic and fast-paced. The capital is a popular investment destination, attracting steady demand from both Thai and expat homebuyers and investors.

However, despite the city’s appeal, preparing for a sale, listing the property on the market, and eventually selling it can sometimes take an unexpectedly long time. In some extreme cases, a property can sit on the market for extended periods with no interest from buyers.

As the adage goes, “time is money,” and this article will offer a practical guide to ensuring sellers can find a buyer in the shortest amount of time at an acceptable selling price!

Bangkok Real Estate Market Conditions

It is important to address the “elephant in the room”: Bangkok is a victim of its success.

Being a major business center and an appealing lifestyle and travel destination, Bangkok has seen a continual rise in demand for real estate from both Thai and foreign buyers. This surge in demand has led developers to continuously launch new residential projects to capitalize on the market.

As a result, over the past 5-10 years, Bangkok has experienced a glut in residential properties, especially in condo developments. There is a large oversupply from both developers on the primary market and resellers on the secondary market.

This oversaturation means that any seller looking to market their property may find their listing lost in a crowded market full of properties for sale. This creates a “needle in a haystack” issue where sellers and their properties lack exposure and fail to reach ready, willing, and able buyers.

Generally, a secondary market property can be sold in 2-3 months. However, due to the illiquid nature of the Bangkok property market, it is possible not to have any success selling for a period of up to 3-6 months.

Setting the Right Selling Price

In light of Bangkok’s unique market conditions and the price sensitivity among homebuyers and investors in the capital, it’s crucial for potential sellers to carefully set their selling price.

While there’s always a potential buyer for any property at the right price in Bangkok, the city’s oversupply issue allows buyers to select from a wide range of options and seek out the best condos on the market. Therefore, sellers need to approach setting the selling price with careful consideration. Here are some important factors to consider when setting a price and entering the market:

Sales Taxes & Sales Commission

In Bangkok, it’s standard for publicly advertised selling prices to include sales taxes, transfer fees (split equally between buyer and seller), and agency sales commission (typically 3% of the selling price). Prior to marketing a property, sellers should assess and calculate these expenses, as they can significantly impact profit margins.

Compare and Assess Prices Online

Given the competitive nature of the Bangkok real estate market and the city’s vast size, prospective buyers typically begin their search online. Popular Bangkok property portals such as DDProperty, Dot Property, and Living Insider are frequented by many buyers.

Potential sellers should likewise explore these platforms to evaluate their property’s valuation by comparing it to similar listings. This assessment can involve comparing other condos available for sale in the same project and evaluating selling prices in equivalent and nearby projects.

However, due to the scale of Bangkok’s property market, outdated listings are a common issue, with much of the listed stock no longer available for sale. Sellers need to carefully compare offerings on various websites.

Since buyers often search online based on pricing, it’s essential for the selling price to be competitive, especially relative to other properties listed online.

Check Valuations and Comparables

Since online listings can be inaccurate and outdated, consulting with the condo or housing project’s Juristic management office can provide an honest valuation. These offices are generally updated when a property changes ownership and are often willing to offer guidance on selling prices in their project.

Additionally, seeking advice from reputable property agencies or professionals can provide valuable market insights, including information on completed transactions in the development and surrounding areas.

By carefully considering these factors and setting a competitive selling price, sellers can improve their chances of attracting buyers in Bangkok’s dynamic real estate market.

Engaging Real Estate Agents 

Many sellers choose to enlist the help of a real estate agency to streamline the process of marketing and selling their property, saving both time and effort. This option is typically cost-effective, with the standard commission rate for reselling property in Bangkok set at just 3% of the selling price, which is notably lower compared to other Thai cities like Hua Hin, Phuket, and Pattaya.

However, it’s important for potential property vendors to understand that Thailand lacks real estate licensing and agency regulations. As a result, navigating Bangkok’s property market can sometimes feel like venturing into uncharted territory, with varying levels of professionalism among agencies.

Before committing to a property agency, it’s advisable to conduct thorough research on their credentials and experience. This can be done by examining their website, social media presence, and client reviews on platforms such as Google My Business or Facebook. Additionally, inquire about their experience selling properties in your project or neighborhood.

When discussing terms with the agency, it’s crucial to understand their marketing strategies for your condo. Different agencies may employ varying approaches, such as exposure on property portals, paid social media campaigns, or leveraging their network of registered buyers and investors.

It’s worth noting that in Bangkok, listing on a multi-agency basis is common practice to maximize exposure. Property owners often engage multiple agencies simultaneously, which can enhance the property’s marketing reach. However, this may also entail coordinating and negotiating with several parties, potentially causing confusion or inconvenience. As a general guideline, it’s advisable to instruct a maximum of 2-3 agencies to market a property to streamline communication and minimize complications.

Marketing Strategies & Tips to Sell Your Property Faster

In Bangkok’s competitive property market, where buyers have ample options and the luxury to shop around, it’s essential for sellers to make their property stand out and leverage as many advantages as possible. 

Here are some practical tips and tactics to help sell your property fast:

Assisting Agencies with Marketing Materials

Property agencies in Bangkok often contend with a high volume of property owners seeking their services, compounded by the fact that many of these agencies are small businesses with limited staff. This can result in overwhelmed property agents struggling to prioritize servicing active buyers and renters while also collecting marketing materials for properties.

To streamline the process, sellers can provide clear guidelines, information, and marketing materials to property agents, including details such as project name, unit number and floor, property specifications (beds, baths, size), expected selling price, and high-quality photos and videos. While it may seem surprising to provide your own photos when agency commission will be paid, doing so allows property agencies to use them as placeholders while they arrange their own set of marketing materials.

Clear and straightforward communication can significantly reduce the onboarding time between engaging a property agent and initiating the marketing and selling process for your property.

Staging & Decoration

Given the vast number of properties on the market, it’s crucial for sellers to make their property visually appealing to stand out from the competition. A well-decorated, furnished, and refurbished property is more likely to attract attention and garner more viewings than a generic, uninspiring one.

Enhancing the aesthetic appeal of your property doesn’t necessarily require significant expense. Simple touches such as coordinating bedding sets, stylish living room rugs, tasteful tableware setups, and appealing wall art can make a significant difference in how your property is perceived.

Convenient Property Access

Providing easy and convenient access to property agents and potential buyers is often an overlooked aspect of the selling process. In Bangkok’s bustling real estate market, it’s difficult to gauge the seriousness of prospective buyers without first allowing them to view the property in person. As a result, multiple viewings are common before a serious offer materializes.

The standard practice in Bangkok is to leave keys and key cards with the juristic management office, which can track visitors and ensure a degree of security. If this service is not available, property owners may need to be available to show the property themselves or delegate this responsibility to a reliable and flexible third party.

Selling Price & Negotiating

Setting the right selling price is paramount in Bangkok’s price-sensitive market, especially considering the current economic conditions favor buyers, making it primarily a “Buyer’s market.” Setting a reasonable price from the outset is crucial for those aiming for a quick sale.

Additionally, adopting a flexible approach to negotiations is essential. Buyers often request price negotiations and may have additional conditions such as repainting walls or fixing fixtures. Property owners should assess these requests with openness and flexibility, as accommodating reasonable requests can expedite the selling process in a market like Bangkok.

Real Estate Selling Process

While delving into the intricacies of legal aspects is beyond the scope of this guide, this section aims to provide a concise summary of what sellers can expect during the property selling process.

Do You Need a Lawyer for a Real Estate Transaction?

A common query among non-Thai sellers unfamiliar with the local business landscape is whether engaging a lawyer is necessary to successfully sell a property. 

Typically, an experienced and professional property agency can handle the sale and transfer of a property on behalf of the seller. However, it’s important to note that there are no regulations or licenses governing property agencies, so sellers must ensure the credentials of the real estate agent representing them.

Some sellers, prioritizing peace of mind especially in multi-million baht transactions, opt to engage a law firm to oversee the sale and verify all documents for a smooth transaction. Several law firms specializing in real estate law offer assistance with Land Department proceedings for a standard legal fee.

Can a Property Sale Be Conducted Remotely?

Many sellers are not based in Thailand or Bangkok and prefer to sell remotely without traveling. While feasible, sellers must arrange for a power of attorney (POA) prepared and notarized in their country of residence. Granting someone the right to represent them in a property transaction via a POA necessitates trust in the chosen representative to execute the sales process effectively.

Process of Selling

The sale of a condo or house on the secondary market generally follows this pattern:

  • Step 1: Sales Deposit Paid
  • Step 2: Signing of Sales and Purchase Agreement
  • Step 3: Preparation before Land Department Visit
  • Step 4: Completion of Sale and Transfer at Land Department

Let’s briefly outline each step:

Step 1: Sales Deposit Paid

After negotiations conclude, the buyer typically commits a sales deposit. The amount, usually negotiable, typically ranges from 1-3% of the selling price. At this stage, the buyer may request proof of ownership documents such as passport/ID card and a copy of the title deed.

Step 2: Signing of Sales and Purchase Agreement

Following the payment of the sales deposit, a Sales and Purchase Agreement (SPA) is drafted, either by the real estate agency or the seller’s lawyer. The SPA legally binds both parties to the sale, specifying the exact date of property transfer and penalties for canceling the sale. 

Step 3: Preparation before Land Department Visit

Before the meeting at the Land Department, the seller must prepare certain official documents, including the original title deed, household registration book, project debt-free certificate, and keys/access cards to the property.

Step 4: Completion of Sale and Transfer at Land Department

In Thailand, the sale is formalized at the Land Department. During this process, the buyer, seller, and their representatives convene at the government office. Documents are reviewed, and if confirmed, the buyer presents a cashier’s check for the outstanding amount of the sale, including taxes and transfer fees. The property agency’s commission is also typically settled on the same day. Upon completion, the buyer becomes the new property owner, while the seller receives proceeds from the sale.

Closing Thoughts: Selling Your Property in Bangkok

In conclusion, navigating the real estate market in Bangkok requires a strategic approach and attention to detail. While the city’s allure attracts both local and international investors, sellers must be prepared to address challenges such as market saturation and prolonged listing periods. 

By setting competitive prices, enhancing property appeal through staging and decoration, and facilitating convenient property access, sellers can increase their chances of attracting buyers. Moreover, collaborating with reputable real estate agencies and understanding the legal procedures involved in property transactions are essential for a successful sale. 

Sellers should remain adaptable and open to negotiation to capitalize on opportunities in Bangkok’s dynamic real estate landscape. With the right strategies in place, sellers can navigate the complexities of the market and successfully sell their properties at the right price! 

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