House Buying Guide for Udon Thani

House Buying Guide for Udon Thani

Housing Constructions Available in Udon Thani

Houses in Udon Thani and Thailand in general are constructed differently than what most foreigners are used to in their home country. 

Almost all houses in Thailand are constructed of brick and mortar with a layer of mortar used for the outside facing and the interior walls of the house.  Structural steel is imbedded in columns spaced typically on 3.5 meter centers.  Rarely is any insulation used in the walls and generally there is no insulation in the attic.  Interior piping is for cold water only in most cases.  Localized electric heaters are used in the bathrooms to heat water for showers.  Roofs are constructed of structural steel welded to the steel from the vertical columns.  Ceramic tiles are then laid over the steel skeleton to complete the roof.  Newer homes use either PVC or Aluminum framed windows, although older homes with wooden frame windows abound.  Tile is typically used for the flooring in moderate priced homes and granite floors are typically found in more expensive homes.  Walk in closets in the bedrooms are a rare sight expect in the higher priced homes.  Room air conditions are usually found in the master bedroom and living rooms of better homes.  Central heating systems are not required.  New homes typically do not include any kitchen.  It is up to the Buyer to design and complete the kitchen himself.  Some people opt to extend the roof of their house in the rear to build a “Thai” kitchen which includes a basic tile covered counter top with a sink and gas grill.  Others build a traditional America/European style kitchen inside the house by installing granite counter tops, wooden cabinets, sinks, gas range and sometimes an electric oven.

Housing Prices

Prices range depending on location, land size, single or two story homes as well as square meters of living space and appointments.  The following represents typical pricing and descriptions, however each property is different and items such as land size and location play an important part in determining the final price.

Townhouse – These are usually located within the city and are two story or two and a half story houses with common adjoining walls.  Typically six to ten are arranged in a row together with the end units commanding a higher price since they have windows on three sides.  Prices typically range 750,000 Baht for basic to 1.2 million Baht for well appointed units in prime locations.

Duplex – Similar to Townhouses, but only one common wall with both units having windows on three sides.  Prices range 1.0 million Baht to 1.5 million Baht.

Single Family One Story House – These are typically found around Ring Road in Udon Thani and on the main roads leading from the city in developed sub-divisions.  Almost all of these have three bedrooms and two baths with a living room and kitchen and are built on lots of 55 to 80 square Wah.  The master bedroom has an en suite bathroom.  The smaller ones have about 100 square meters living space (1000 square feet) inside the house plus additional covered space for carport, porch, rear patio etc.  Prices range from 1.5 million Baht to 2.0 million Baht.  The larger ones have bigger bedrooms and living rooms and are typically 120 to 140 square meters living space (1200 to 1400 square feet).  Prices typically range from about 1.6 million Baht to 2.4 million Baht.  Very large one story houses on lots of 200 – 400 square Wah can command prices in excess of 4 million Baht.

Single Family Two Story House  -- These are also found throughout the city (mostly older customized construction) as well as around Ring Road and the roads leading from Udon Thani.  Prices range quite a bit because there are so many variations in quality of amenities, land size, house design and built in features.  A basic smaller 3 bedroom 2 bath two story house with about 180 square meters of living space built on a lot of 80 square Wah sells from a low of 2.4 million Baht outside Ring Road.  Houses on Ring Road typically sell for a minimum of 3.4 million Baht to as much as 10 million Baht for a prime location inside the city or on Ring Road in a gated community for a 3 to 4 Bedroom 4 to 5 Bath house with as much as 500 square meters (5000 square feet) of living space plus pool on a 1 Rai or bigger lot.

Outline of the Buying Process

Buying a house in Udon Thani is similar process to that used in most Western Countries.

First you need to familiarize yourself with the city and the most popular places for foreigners to live.  Make a visit to Udon Home Sales, Udon Thani’s premier Real Estate Agent with a very wide selection of homes in the Udon Thani area.

Our staff will be pleased to answer any questions you may have and take you to see many available properties for sale.

Once you have surveyed the area and decided on the sub-division and house you are interested in you can make a verbal offer to our staff.  This offer should include: (1) the purchase price offered; (2) the amount of deposit you will make upon verbal confirmation of the acceptance (typically 5% minimum and 10% to show real sincerity in the offer along with a slightly smaller purchase price offer); (3) the time needed until final closing (typically less than 30 days for cash offer and 60 days if financing is needed.  Also state if cash offer or if financing needed, many Sellers do not want to deal with contingency contracts based on financing needed; (4) list any personal property the Buyer expects to receive from the Seller (items like all furnishings, drapes, air conditioners, water heaters pumps and tanks etc); (5) percentage of all taxes due on sale to be paid by Buyer and Seller; (6) Expected closing date.

Upon acceptance of the verbal offer, the Buyer will be expected to make the cash deposit at our office at the time of signing the Purchase Contract Offer (Will Buy, Will Sell contract).  Udon Home Sales will issue a cash receipt document for your safe keeping in the amount of the deposit.  You will also be furnished with a signed copy of the Purchase Contract from the Seller.  This will include a copy of the Chanote land title deed.

The Buyer may decide to perform an independent survey of the land and also perform a title search to determine if there are any outstanding claims against the Seller of the land or against the land itself.  Surveys are generally not needed except for houses built on separate plots of land outside of any sub-division.  Udon Home Sales can assist with this process along with our English speaking attorney.

Prior to the closing date you will have to transfer the remaining balance of funds into Thailand from your home country.  When doing so, you should take care to transfer the monies in your own currency; i.e. from the UK send the balance of the payment in GBP Sterling to your Thai Baht currency bank account in Thailand.  Also, make it known to the receiving bank in Thailand that the purpose of transferring such an amount is for buying property in Thailand. By transferring in your own currency you will often gain a better exchange but more importantly it will make it easier for the bank to grant what is known as a Tor Tor Sam. This is a bank certificate that is required whenever a transaction in excess of 20,000 USD takes place. Keep the document.  If you ever want to sell the property and transfer the proceeds back to you home country, you will need this document.

On the date of closing you will need to meet in our office at 195 Pracharaksa Road in Udon Thani together with your wife, girlfriend, nominee etc.  The Seller will also meet in our office and bring the original Chanote for inspection.  The Buyer needs to bring cash or a certified check issued to the Seller.  Once everyone is satisfied, then everyone will go together to the Land Office nearby to conclude the legal document transactions and immediately thereafter to the bank of the Seller to deposit the funds.  Taxes have to be paid in cash at the Land Office prior to document processing.

Inspection of the property can be concluded after the above in the event that furnishings etc are included with the sale.

Our staff will assist with the changing of the Blue Book ownership documents for the house along with transferring the Electricity and Water utility records to your name either on the afternoon of the closing or the immediate date following.

Congratulations, you now have a wonderful home in Udon Thani to spend the rest of your life with you new love!!!!!    

Final Note:  Location, Location, Location

The Location issue is of prime concern when considering the purchase of a house in Udon Thani.  Following are a few pitfalls to watch out for and the consideration needed to be given before the issues surrounding “Location” can be properly addressed.

First and foremost, you want to buy a house in a convenient location to the places you frequent.  Most foreigners tend to locate in sub divisions around Ring Road or on the main roads leading outside Udon Thani (Route 2 going North to Nongkhai, Route 2 going South to Khon Kaen, or the Road going to Sakorn Nakorn).  Please refer to our map showing the location of several popular sub- divisions and the landmark shopping areas of the city.

Second and equally important, consider the prospect of resale before you buy.  Is the house in a good location and is it appealing to future buyers?  From our experience, foreign buyers want either: (1) a house in a well maintained sub-division with comparable houses; or (2) a custom designed house on a larger plot of land (1 – 2 Rai, or 1600 – 3200 square meters within close proximity to Udon Thani’s Ring Road.  Beware:  Houses located more than 10 km away from Udon Thani’s Ring Road are very difficult to resell because the number of potential buyers is quite limited.

Third, never ever build a house on the family land of your wife or girlfriend!!! Repeat after me!!  “I will not build a house on the family land of my wife or girlfriend!!!”  There are multiple problems here.  First, most of these properties are located in distant towns or villages away from the major cities in the NE of Thailand.  So there are no restaurants, nightlife or shopping centers nearby.  Please consider if you want to live in such a remote area for the rest of your life.  Second, in the event of a breakup, it will be extremely difficult for you to continue to live there.  Her relatives (and probably your only neighbors) will make your life miserable and what possible reason would you want to continue to live there unless you found your new true love in the same village.  Third, it will be almost impossible for you to sell the property to another person.  There is no market (at reasonable prices) for houses so far away from Udon Thani.