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HomeRent your propertyLease agreement

Learn more about Lease Agreement

A residential lease agreement is a contract that a landlord and tenant sign when a tenant wishes to rent a property in Thailand. It can be used for a variety of properties, including villas, houses, condominiums, flats or rooms. This lease agreement can help you become a better landlord. You have the best way to establish a mutually beneficial landlord-tenant relationship. When you enter into any type of residential lease agreement, you need to ensure that you have a valid agreement outlining your rights and responsibilities as a landlord or tenant. With this sample lease agreement, you will have all the clauses that protect the property from damage and the landlord from non-payment of rent. If the property you wish to rent is not a residential property, you can download our commercial lease agreement template for a business tenant or the land lease agreement.

Table of contents

Do I need a lease agreement to rent my property?

Even if you are renting to a friend or family member, it is wise not to rely on a verbal agreement to rent your property. The specific terms discussed in an oral lease agreement can easily be forgotten, and relationships can deteriorate as a result. Oral contracts are also much harder to prove, making them difficult to enforce in court. When properly executed and professionally drafted, a lease agreement offers legal protection to landlords:

➤ Terms and conditions that the landlord and tenant have agreed to, such as no pets or smoking in the property
➤ The obligation of the tenant to pay the rent on a specific date during the term of the lease
➤ The ability of the landlord to terminate the agreement in the event of non-payment or damage to your property

A rental agreement can also help limit phone calls from tenants with questions about common issues such as acceptable rent payment methods and maintenance responsibilities.

What to do before signing a lease agreement?

Lease agreement thailand roadmap

Step 1. Tenant visits the property

Before signing a rental lease agreement, the tenant usually visits the property, examines it to see if it is suitable for their standard of living and makes a verbal or written offer to the estate agent, manager or landlord. This offer usually refers to a monthly rent amount. In most cases, the landlord’s desired rent is communicated to the prospective tenant prior to the site visit.

Step 2. Application to rent

Before accepting a tenant’s offer, it is useful for the landlord to make sure that the tenant can pay the rent or maintain the premises in good condition. You can therefore use our rental application form to get all the information about the tenant before accepting a lease. If the landlord accepts the prospective tenant’s offer, he or she will prepare a lease agreement containing information about the tenant, the landlord and the property being rented.

Step 3. Conduct a tenant background check

It is strongly recommended that the landlord conduct a credit, background and criminal record check on the tenant. With our rental application document, you can obtain this information.

Step 4. Reference checks

The landlord can contact former employers, former landlords and any non-family references provided by the tenant. This will enable the landlord to know whether the tenant will be able to meet the terms of the lease agreement.

Step 5. Drafting the lease agreement

If the tenant(s) meet the landlord’s criteria and the landlord has made you an offer, a lease agreement should be drawn up. Of course, the landlord and tenant can meet to discuss the specific terms of the lease, which consist mainly of the following

➤ Rental rules - such as parking, pets, subletting, etc.
➤ Monthly rent amount (THB)
➤ Move-in date - The day the tenant will take possession of the space
➤ Security Deposit - The landlord determines this amount, but in general, the security deposit is equal to two months rent in Thailand
➤ Lease term - Monthly, yearly, etc.
➤ Utilities - Electricity, water supply and gas

Step 6. Signing the lease agreement

The lease does not need to have a witness (although it is always recommended to have at least one). At the time of approval, the landlord and tenant should exchange the following:

Landlord: access (keys) to the premises and all common areas (unless occupancy will not occur until a later date)
Tenant: security deposit (if required), first month's rent and any prorated rent (if the tenant moves in before the lease start date)

Step 7. Move-in the lease property

At the time of moving in, the tenant must visit the property and complete a rental inspection report or  inventory of fixtures. This allows the landlord to avoid charging the tenant for pre-existing damages. In addition, the tenant’s inspection report provides information on the condition of the property at the beginning of the lease. The tenant should ask the landlord to acknowledge any necessary repairs by signing this form. If this inspection report is not completed, the tenant will have no evidence to support that any damage present at the end of the lease was not their fault.

What information should be included in a lease agreement?

This lease agreement is translated into English and Thai and is very simple to use. It includes all the legal protections needed to rent your property with confidence:

1. Property address: Each lease agreement form must include the property address and the name of the owner or property manager.

2. Security deposit: You must state the amount of the security deposit and how it will be returned after the tenant leaves. Our contract allows the landlord to keep the security deposit in case of a breach of the lease. A notice of impediment or eviction of the tenant may be required in the event of a breach.

3. Tenant and guest information: You will need the full names of each person living in the lease property. For guests, the contract will protect by requiring written consent from the landlord.

4. Payment of rent: With our lease agreement template, all you have to do is choose the date on which the rent is due. You can also indicate the number of late fees and the date they are due.

5. Pet provisions: As a landlord, you have the right to decide whether a tenant can bring a pet. The lease agreement will protect you from bringing in pets without your consent if you have any questions about allowing pets in your property.

6. Furnishings: While most property only include appliances or perhaps window coverings, your property may be different. Note the furnishings you provide in your lease so that all belongings can be accounted for when the tenant moves out.

7. Parking: If your tenant has a parking space in the driveway of your condominium complex or house, be sure to include a specific area in your lease agreement.

8. Subletting: You can allow or prohibit subletting your property. Many property managers will not allow tenants to rent out (all or part of) their house or condominium to someone with whom they do not have a lease agreement, so you may want to consider prohibiting subletting. You may also want to include provisions for adding new or additional tenants to a lease with your approval. If your Tenant has already received permission from the Landlord to sublet the property, then he can draw up a sublease agreement with a subtenant for a period not exceeding the original term of the lease.

9. Other provisions: There are other options and provisions available in our printable lease agreement form – such as the number of keys provided and how to terminate the tenancy – so you can be sure that your lease agreement will help you specify all the important details for you and your tenant.

10. Tenant notification: Tenants are required to inform the landlord of damage to the property. Landlords may also be required to notify tenants of mould that exceeds certain limits.

Both the tenant and the landlord must keep a copy of the signed lease agreement for their records. Note that if you would like to rent for a long term rental (30 years), consider making a leasehold with the help of our experts.

What should I know before entering into a lease agreement?

Whether the agreement is called a tenancy, lease or rental agreement, these agreements are governed in Thailand by the Civil and Commercial Code, chapter “Rental of Property”. Any agreement in which the owner agrees to let another person use the property for a limited period of time and the other party agrees to pay rent is considered a rental agreement between a tenant and a landlord.

A lease agreement in Thailand may contain clauses based on the general freedom of contract between the parties and clauses based on specific property rental laws. The importance of the distinction between the two lies in the future enforceability of contractual obligations and the basic law of property rental. The options and obligations of a valid lease are enforceable against all other persons and are legally binding on successors to the leased property (true leasehold rights follow the property along with ownership), and once granted, the owner (lessor) cannot renege on the lease option and cannot change his mind, contrary to the contractual promises of the lease agreement and possible future enforcement difficulties. Under Thai law and Supreme Court decisions, the term agreed in the lease is considered a fundamental right of the tenant. However, an option to renew the lease is considered a contractual option or obligation (not a fundamental right of the lease) that must be enforced in the future. You can use a lease amendment to change lease details, renew or extend a lease in the future.

1. Essential lease details

Payment of rent is an essential element of a lease under Thai law (Section 537). Possession of real property under a lease in Thailand without payment of rent would not be enforceable as a proprietary lease under the Civil and Commercial Code. A lease without payment of rent would not be governed by the chapter on real estate leases, but by, for example, the right of habitation or usufruct laws, and a different set of rules would apply. In order to register a lease agreement, the land office will require that the lease includes a rent. The lease or rental price must be considered a reasonable rent. If it is not, the land office will refuse to register the lease or will assess the rent based on the government’s estimated value of the property (registration fees, property tax, landlord’s income tax will be based on this amount). The lease, as opposed to superficies, usufruct or habitation, cannot be registered for a nominal amount (1 baht) or without consideration to be paid.

2. The right to sublet

In the Civil and Commercial Code, the lease is placed under the heading of contracts, and as a real estate lease, it is mainly a personal contractual right of the lessee (termination upon the lessee’s death) with real right aspects. For this reason, under Thai law, the right to sublet or assign a residential lease agreement is only permitted if the lease agreement contains the right of the lessee to transfer his leasehold rights or to transfer possession of the leased property to a third party. The tenant’s right to sublet or assign the lease must be included in the lease agreement. Otherwise, the tenant is not allowed by Thai law to sublet or assign the lease to another person. If you allow your tenant to sublet your property, make sure that they sign your letter of consent to sublet and have a specific period of time to do so.

3. Lease agreement regulations in Thailand

As of 1 May 2018, the business of renting residential property becomes a “contract-controlled business” in Thailand, which requires minimum standards of consumer (tenant) protection in a lease agreement when the landlord’s rental activities are considered a real estate rental business, as described below.

Rent property agent

What to do after signing a lease agreement?

After signing your lease agreement, make sure you receive your payment on time, and do not hesitate to demand payment by sending a formal eviction notice if payment is late. Make sure your tenant is not violating the terms and conditions of the lease agreement, and do not hesitate to ask questions of the neighbour or tenant directly. You can provide a monthly rent receipt to the tenant as proof that payment has been received. Keep all original rental agreement documents with you, including the rental application and home inspection report, so that you can keep the tenant’s security deposit in case of damage to your property. In the event of serious misconduct by the tenant, do not hesitate to terminate your contract by sending a termination letter to the tenant. Note that you are entitled to keep the tenant’s security deposit to cover any damage caused by the tenant’s default.

How to avoid violations in your lease agreement?

1. Use of illegal provisions in a lease agreement

A residential rental agreement should not contain provisions that violate Thai laws. A landlord should avoid placing discriminatory clauses in a rental agreement or clauses that require the tenant to waive his or her right to a refund of a security deposit or to sue the landlord. An illegal provision may result in the landlord being liable for monetary damages.

2. Failure to provide a safe environment

In Thailand, landlords are legally liable if they fail to protect tenants from unsafe conditions on the property or from criminal activity. A landlord must take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of tenants from other tenants and from criminals entering the property. If a tenant suffers physical damage or property damage after the landlord realizes the property is unsafe, the tenant renting the property may be able to sue and obtain compensation from the landlord. It is recommended that the tenant should first notify the landlord with a notice to vacate.

3. Refusal to make repairs

A rental agreement must specify who must make repairs. A landlord must make certain repairs even if the rental agreement does not specify these obligations. A habitable rental property must have air conditioning, plumbing, gas, water, a solid roof and floor, and electricity. If a property remains in poor condition, the tenant may choose to repair the problem, not pay the full amount of rent, move out without permission, or report the violation to a building inspector. Failure to make these important repairs when requested may result in legal action against the landlord.

4. Failure to respect a tenant's right to privacy

A tenant has the right to privacy. A landlord must not enter a tenant’s unit without giving three days’ written or verbal notice. A landlord may enter after giving information when showing the unit to a prospective tenant, making a repair or inspecting the property. It is not necessary to give notice in an emergency.

5. Ignoring eviction rules

A landlord may evict a tenant for non-payment of rent, for failing to vacate the premises after a lease has expired, for violating a provision of the lease agreement, or if the tenant causes damage to the property that results in a substantial decrease in its value. Before kicking out a tenant, the landlord must use the eviction procedure.

6. Retention of security deposits

Most rental agreements require the tenant to pay a security deposit to cover damages caused by the tenant or in case of tenant default. After a tenant leaves, the landlord can use the security deposit to repair damages caused by the tenant. However, the landlord must provide the tenant with an itemized list of deductions and pay the balance of the deposit. If the landlord does not provide an itemized statement or return the unused portion of the security deposit, the landlord may be liable to the tenant for damages.

7. Inadequate rental property insurance

In addition to insuring a property against destruction caused by natural disasters, a landlord must insure it against lawsuits brought by a tenant. If a landlord illegally evicts a tenant, makes an illegal entry, or if a tenant or person lawfully on the premises is injured due to an unsafe condition, the insurance will cover the cost of litigation and pay damages.

Rental lease agreement clauses

Common questions from Landlords about lease agreement

What are Landlords legally responsible for?

As a Landlord, you are responsible for making the necessary repairs to make the property habitable. You are also responsible for fulfilling your part of the rental agreement, including paying for certain utilities or lawn maintenance.

Can I limit the number of Tenants?

You can, if you comply with local housing laws. The general guideline is two people per room plus one. Using this guideline, the limit would be five Tenants for a two-bedroom apartment.

How much of a security deposit can I ask for?

Generally, the Landlord asks for 2 months security deposit to rent a property for 6 months or 1 year contract.

Can I rent my condominium unit for a short period in Thailand?

Renting out your condominium unit for a short period is not allowed in Thailand for commercial purposes. Owners mainly use the following platforms to rent a property in Thailand: Airbnb, Booking, DD Property, Thailand Property or Dot property.

What can I deduct from a security deposit?

In most cases, you cannot deduct expenses related to normal wear and tear, such as paint fading, carpet wear, or dirty blinds. You can remove damaged or hygiene problems that are considered outside of everyday use, such as damage to the building or excessive dirt.

Can I increase the rent before a lease expires?

In most cases, you must wait until the lease expires to change the rent. If you plan to increase the rent, you must give 30 or 60 days’ notice so that the current Tenant can decide whether to sign a new lease for the increased amount or move out. Local laws may apply to the notice period required.

What if I don't want to renew the lease with a Tenant?

If you do not intend to renew a lease with a Tenant, you must inform the Tenant in advance that the lease is about to expire and that you do not want to continue it. In Thailand, you will need to provide either 30 or 60 days’ notice.

Are verbal lease agreements legal?

In many cases, yes, as long as you can easily prove that there is an agreement between Landlord and Tenant. The terms of the deal, however, can be challenging to prove in court. That’s why it’s essential to document the terms and have both parties sign them (especially if it’s a long-term agreement).

Should I allow subletting?

Subletting can be beneficial to Landlords in some cases and can reduce vacancy times. If a Tenant asks to sublet, they may have financial problems or simply need to move. Either way, subletting can be an excellent option to keep the unit full, as long as you correctly select the subletter and document the arrangement with a sublease agreement.

What steps should I take if my Tenant violates our lease agreement?

If a Tenant violates the lease by not paying the rent or not complying with other conditions, such as bringing in a pet, you can send a demand letter. Many Landlords start by sending an eviction notice or a notice of late rent, if applicable. The information tells the Tenant how they have violated the lease and what may happen if they do not comply with the lease terms within a specific period.

How can I find out about rent regulations in Thailand?

Consulting a local lawyer is an excellent first step. A lawyer can review your rental documents and advise you on how to comply with the laws that apply to your situation.

Common questions from Tenants about lease agreement

What if I can't afford to pay the full security deposit?

If you cannot afford to pay the full security deposit, you should ask the Landlord if you can make a payment arrangement. Be sure to stick to your payment schedule, or you risk eviction.

What should I do if my lease is about to expire?

Contact your Landlord to let them know you intend to stay. If you do not want to renew your lease, you must give your Landlord at least 30 days’ notice. Check your lease to see if you have agreed to a more extended notice period. If you are not sure when you will move out, you may be able to start a month-to-month lease.

How do I get my security deposit back?

Thailand has laws regarding how long it takes to get your security deposit back, and this information may be included in your initial rental agreement. Make sure the Landlord has your new mailing address so that they can send you the check. If the unit is not returned in the same condition as received, you can expect some expenses to be deducted from your deposit.

Are Landlords obligated to accept pets in a facility?

Landlords are not required to accept pets on the premises. If you wish to bring a pet, be sure to obtain the owner’s consent.

How can I get out of a rental agreement?

You may be able to quickly terminate your rental agreement if your rental agreement permits. If not, you will need to talk to your Landlord first. You may be allowed to find someone to sublet your unit to finish the lease term for you. If you absolutely cannot get out of the lease but must move out, ask if you can make payments to pay off what is left after giving up your deposit. In some cases, you may be protected from the consequences of breaking a lease, such as if you are in the active military and are deployed. If you move and the Landlord won’t let you break the lease, you can be sued for the remaining balance.

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