Thailand has long enjoyed being one of the world’s top tourist destinations and one of Asia’s leading economic pillars. The country has an amazing heritage it still proudly displays, but has also seen an industrial, technological and financial boom, especially in Bangkok. Now, Thailand is known not just as a country with beautiful, traditional sights and diverse sounds and smells, but as a country with skyscrapers, trains, huge billboards and massive shopping malls as well.
Progress in Thailand
Because of its progress, Thailand, primarily Bangkok, has seen an influx of foreign nationals coming in to make investments and settling in as well. The country’s growth has also brought young Thai professionals into Bangkok. These, along with the plans for the BTS Skytrain’s extension to other locations have increased activity in Bangkok’s real estate market.
Real estate developers and construction magnates have sought to make the most of Bangkok’s developments, catering to the city’s urban population who want and need a place to stay. The biggest housing plans are for city-centered homes such as condominium buildings or apartment complexes. But housing projects in residential areas are not to be outdone, with real estate developers creating more luxurious homes in the suburbs and subdivisions.
As of April of this year, 41 new construction projects with a total of 11,263 housing units are in order at 29,470 million baht. A chunk of these projects are made up of condominiums, 5,536 units at 49%, then single-family homes with 2,879 units at 26%, followed by townhouses with 2,364 units at 21%. Most of these housing units are located on Bangkok’s Purple Line and what will soon be the Pink Line. 70% of these projects have been initiated and are being supported by Thai companies such as Pruksa Real Estate PLC, Land & HousePLC, Lalin Property PLC, Asian Property Development PLC, Major Development PLC, Sansiri PLC,LPN Development PLC, Supalai PLC and Thanasiri Group PLC.
Stable Real Estate Market
But while the real estate market has risen and has remained stable, increasing interest rates seem to be affecting customers’ decisions to purchase. The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) has increased interest rates to 2.75%, with predictions of annual interest rates going to over 3% in the near future. However, these numbers don’t seem to faze a lot of potential buyers who still want to avail of the prices competing developers offer.
A dark lining on the horizon for real estate developers is the fact that there has been a drop in 2011 presales for condominiums, as people seem to prefer low-rise units, individual houses and townhouses to stacked condos. Fortunately, the predicted decline is a slight 2-3% from last year as seen in surveys from potential homeowners. On the bright side, these unsold condo units may just drop in price when low-rise housing units prevail, once again increasing the demand for them.
Real estate in Bangkok remains to be a positive aspect of this city’s, and in turn, the country’s continuing economic progress, reinforcing the fact that old Siam is one of Asia’s strongest forerunners in global development.