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Thailand land deeds – what is a Chanot or a Nor Sor Sam land deed?

Where to begin?

Thailand land deeds - where to begin

Thailand land deeds – where does the process start for buying land in Thailand? One thing that must definitely be taken into consideration early on in the buying process is the type of land deeds that are worth buying. Looking at buying the wrong type of deed will only set the stage for a lot of lost money and big headaches.

Thailand land deeds – many different types

Thai land deeds

Thailand has many different types of land deeds all of which have their own features. Some ‘deeds’ are no more than just proof that the land has been used by the holder of the ‘deed’. Some are fully delineated and registered with scrutiny at the Thai Land Department’s local office. Some are marked with small concrete posts, numbered to correlate with a point on the deed ‘map’. With these Chanot type deeds, you can stand on the land with a deed in your hand and know exactly where you are on the land plot. With other types of deeds, you may be on the land you think you are, or on another completely different plot entirely.

Basic knowledge of Thai land deeds

It’s important that you know at least the basics of which deed is which. Later a lawyer should enter into the process and tell you more as part of the buyer’s due diligence process but to start, it helps to know a bit. Time spent looking into buying a land plot for sale that is of the unrecommended type deed can be saved. Add to that any money given in good faith, which may or may not be able to be returned, and a little knowledge is a winning formula.

Koh Phangan Realty Co check deeds and planning permission zones

Koh Phangan construction zoning

Not every real estate agent here on Koh Phangan is as scrupulous as us here at Koh Phangan Realty. Some will just want to sell anything to make their commission. Not us! We ONLY deal with partially vetted Thailand land deeds to save on wasted time, for both you the buyer and ourselves.

Over the 16 years that we have been living and working here in Koh Phangan’s real estate sector some basic deed/land checks have become all the more important. Over this time many environmental protection laws for building permits have been made. Things such as no building taller than 6m in height either within 50m from the seafront or more than 80m above mean sea level must be thought about.

Now more than ever a good working knowledge of planning regulations must be known by the realtor and passed on to the prospective buyer. After all, you wouldn’t want to buy your perceived dream plot, only to find out later that your dream property is forbidden to be built there.

Due diligence by lawyer an essential step in any Koh Phangan property purchase

Of course, we don’t make as full a due diligence check as your lawyer should do later, but we do make deed checks, parcel point checks (size check), heights above sea level, building zone, and basic seller checks (both private and corporate sellers). This is by no means a replacement or a way to save costs on a lawyer’s due diligence checks. This is money well spent and akin to an engineer’s report of a ready-made house for sale. Sometimes you need an expert’s in-depth opinion to save a lot of heartache.

So, what are the Thailand land deeds available and which ones are ‘OK’ and which ones aren’t?

To answer just that question, please read on…

Recommended title deeds for buyers

CHANOT also known as Nor Sor See (4) Jor – โฉนดที่ดิน — น.ส.๔.จ

Chanot title deed example
Chanot title deed example
  • Chanot title deed
  • Highest Thailand land deeds possible
  • Named after the Thai letters found at the top right corner of the deed — น.ส.๔.จ — น – Nor Noo — ส – Sor sua, ๔ (4) number 4 is pronounced ‘see’ in Thai language — and จ Jor jan — hence the name Nor Sor See Jor
  • Registered at Land Department.
  • Notice that the deed has parcel points, the small circles at the nodes, and also they are numbered. The small posts placed in the ground at these points have the same numbers as the deed.
  • The owner has 1 copy and the 2nd copy is kept at the Land Department records office
  • The original deed is made on one sheet induplicat