Foreign buyers looking to purchase a condo in Thailand will need to comply with a strict set of legal regulations and document requirements set by the Thailand Condominium Act. The Foreign Exchange Transaction Form (FET) previously known as the Thor Tor 3 is one of these official documents.
What is the Foreign Exchange Transaction Form (FET)?
The FET is an official document prepared to comply with the Foreign Exchange policy of the Bank of Thailand (BOT). The document is essential when transferring money from overseas for the purchase of real estate in Thailand.
“The FET document is proof that foreign currency was remitted into Thailand and subsequently converted into Thai Baht by a local Thai bank.”
If a foreign buyer or his legal representative is unable to present an FET Form when formalizing the purchase of a property at the designated Land Office, the transfer will not be approved by the Land Officer.
The FET Form may also be required by local banks when a foreign seller wishes to remit the proceeds of a property sale back to their home country.
How to obtain a Foreign Exchange Transaction Form (FET)?
While transferring money into Thailand for the purchase of real estate may seem like a mundane and straightforward process, foreign buyers need to follow a specific set of procedures.
In order to obtain an FET Form that complies with all the Bank of Thailand’s regulations and Land Office requirements, foreign buyers will need to ensure the following:
1. The full purchase price of the condo is remitted in foreign currency. It is important to note that the foreign currency remittance must be converted by the receiving Thai bank.
2. The transfer should mention the foreign purchaser’s name either as the sender, receiver or at least in the purpose of transfer.
3. Mention purpose of transfer in the bank application form of the remittance transfer.
Here is an example of a purpose of transfer note:
“Money Transfer for the Purchase of [Unit Number], on [Floor], in Condominium [Full Condo Name] on behalf of [Mr. /Ms. Full Passport Name]”
Foreign Exchange Transaction Form, Credit Note or Bank Letter of Guarantee
If the foreign buyer and/or their legal representative complies with all 3 requirements above, they can visit the branch of the receiving Thai bank and request an FET-Form or its equivalent.
For foreign remittance amounts under 50,000 USD local banks may instead produce a Credit Note or Bank Letter of Guarantee both of which are recognised by the Land Office.
When receiving a Credit Note or Bank Letter of Guarantee, foreign buyers must ensure their bank includes the amount of foreign currency received, the amount of Thai Baht obtained after conversion and the purpose of transfer.
Foreign Exchange Transaction Form. Frequently asked questions
1. Can a foreign buyer transfer money to a representative (Law firm, property agent or friend) and still obtain an FET Form?
Provided the 3 requirements mentioned above are followed, the foreign purchaser’s representative will be able to obtain an FET Form.
2. When buying off-plan or new builds, is an FET Form still required?
Yes, an FET Form is still required, therefore foreign buyers need to comply with the transfer guidelines when remitting money to a project developer’s account.
3. Do permanent residents or long-term foreign residents in Thailand still need an FET Form?
It is possible to obtain exemptions from the FET Form requirement, if the buyer is a permanent resident or long-term expat resident. However, these buyers will still need to show the source of funds and they will be required to present a different set of documents. It is therefore best to seek professional legal advice in regards to this matter.
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