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Whether you’ve only been in the real estate business for a short time or you’ve grown to a medium sized enterprise, this industry can chew you up and spit you out. On the other hand, it can also yield great returns if you know what you’re doing. Entering the game at the right time and with the right information makes a huge difference, as does paying attention to details. Listing the right photo of a property you’re managing online, attracting the right type of tenants, and following market trends should be on all your list of things to do. If you’re past the beginning stages, then having a plan for how to keep on top of these things at a low cost is essential.
Here are a few simple tips to help keep you savvy in the ever evolving market of Thai real estate:
1. Keeping Costs Low.
If you’re new to the market, you need to do your research. It’s unnecessary to pay a consultant to keep you apprised of current real estate prices and rental rates since you can do it yourself. For example, logging onto DDProperty to buy house is where most would-be renters and owners go first to start their search. In fact, the CEO of the company himself, Steve Melhuish, started the website as a startup which has since boomed. Despite not knowing much about the real estate industry, Melhuish did his homework and sought out information that’s free, but takes some effort to find and review. While it may be tempting to pay someone to do the research on market trends and listings, by doing it yourself, you not only save money, but also become an expert in areas you may not have first planned to. Get online and make keeping yourself up to date on real estate trends a priority.
2. Know How to List and Show.
This is a deceptively simple point, but you’d be amazed at how many real estate SMBs don’t know how to list their own properties in a way that attracts good tenants and high listing traffic. First of all, it all starts with a picture. When potential tenants go looking for a new residence online, they start by either searching for price, location, or both. You’re not going to necessarily rope in clicks on your listings solely by listing a pretty picture, but what will land you views is listing that attractive image once renters get their list filtered by location and/or price.
A few tried and true tips for photographing your properties in their best light:
- Take lots of photos if you’re doing it yourself to save money
- Only photograph clean properties
- Focus on flattering angles, but don’t be deceptive
- Post actual photos of a property with its listing (this is surprisingly rare)
- Keep the images hi-res, sharp, and professional
- Include at least five photos per listing
These are the elements in a real estate listing that will attract renters since they’re immediately given a better idea of what your property has to offer.
3. Size and Rental Yields.
Global Property Guide reports that unlike other trends in large cities where smaller apartments have higher rental yields, the numbers in Bangkok have actually risen with the size of apartment. This means that investing in a larger property may actually be to your benefits when balancing cost and rental yield. That being said, don’t forget to take other elements into account that attract potential renters, such as access to public transportation, proximity to places of worship and entertainment, and major highways.
4. Keeping Up with Legalese.
Thailand has a lot of restrictions on who can and own property and where. For example, if you’re a foreigner looking to make a profit by purchasing a property like a condo and renting it out, there are restrictions on how many units in a building can be held by non-Thai owners. Housing laws are also covered by different legal covenants, and vary by property type. Renting out a house has different rules than renting out a condo. While you can cut corners and keep costs low on other parts of your real estate SMB, legal counsel is where you want to put your money. Never skimp on consulting with an attorney to review all rules and regulations about the type of properties you’re renting out, ownership laws, and any local ordinances of which you may not be aware.
Renting out property means you’re also charging on an asset that you own, and you need to protect those assets. Attracting responsible, trustworthy tenants and routinely monitoring your property is an important way to ensure that you’re not losing money. Real estate can offer very attractive returns if done the right way, and by keeping costs low where you can, it’s possible to succeed in what is admittedly a very competitive industry.