What is the Thai Rental Law All About?

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A year ago a new law came into place that applies to rent properties in Thailand. Named the Thai Rental Law, it affects rental properties that form part of a business. Any person who owns in excess of five rental properties is now classed as a business operator who has a contract controlled business. Landlords who have less than this magic number are not bound by these new regulations, so the following does not apply.

For those who do, there is a change in how utilities are charged, the deposit and the termination of the tenancy. Starting with the utilities, business operators are not allowed to charge to their tenants an inflated price for the utilities. A practice that is commonly used as a way for the business operator to generate an additional income.

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Next, anyone renting a property from a business operator is only required to pay a month deposit rather than two months which is the norm. To protect the tenant’s deposit, an inventory check in that details the condition of the property and its content, must be attached to the tenancy agreement too.

This document will be used to check the condition at the end of the tenancy to determine the deductions, if any, from the deposit. The business operator also must return the deposit within seven days of the tenancy termination.

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The termination terms have changed too meaning that tenants are now only required to give 30 days notice to end the tenancy. This is a one-sided break clause which the business operator is not allowed to have in the agreement.

These new regulations became effective on 1 May 2018, but remember, they do not apply to everyone so check how many properties your landlord owns to see how your tenancy should be structured.

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