Free visa policy expected to boost condominium sales


Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin's policy to offer free visas to Chinese and Indian tourists will likely boost sales of condominiums, the Real Estate Information Centre (REIC) said on Thursday.

The centre’s acting director Wichai Wiratkapan expects the Thai property sector to recover slightly from the economic slowdown and strict financial institution regulations on borrowing.

The slow economic recovery, interest rate hikes and rising household debt to gross domestic product ratio are among the factors that have affected demand and supply over the past two quarters, he said.

He advised the government to launch measures to stimulate property sales, such as loan-to-value (LTV) measures, increase the quota for foreign condominium ownership and allow the private sector to buy back properties.

He also expects Srettha's policy to offer free visas for Chinese and Indian tourists to increase sales of condominiums.

Clear measures to stimulate property sales are necessary as part of the government’s economic policies, he said.

Surachet Kongcheep, managing director of property advisory firm Property DNA, said there is still a strong demand for condominiums in Thailand amongst foreigners and this is likely to increase.

According to REIC, ownership transfer of condominiums to foreigners for living and investment purposes has recovered to the pre-Covid-19 pandemic period.

Some 7,338 units of condominiums worth 35.21 billion baht were transferred to foreigners in the first half of this year, up 65.6% and 57.8% year on year respectively, it said.

Chinese buyers snapped up the biggest number of condominiums during the first six months, purchasing 3,448 units worth 16.99 billion baht.

They were followed by Russians (702 units worth 2.55 billion baht), Americans (293 units worth 1.28 billion baht), the French (269 units worth 1.12 billion baht) and the British (260 units worth 1.28 billion baht).

Myanmar nationals spent the most at an average of 7 million baht per condominium while Indian buyers opted for the most spacious with an average of 89.8 square metres.