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Guide to Renting an Apartment in Bangkok

Thinking about renting an apartment in Bangkok? Here’s what you need to know.

The prospect of moving into a new apartment can be very exciting, but don’t get ahead of yourself and let the excitement get the best of you. Renting an apartment in Thailand can sometimes be challenging. There are many things you need to consider.

Therefore, we’ve made this guide to help you find the right apartment in the capital of Thailand.

Finding an Apartment in Bangkok

Like in other parts of the world, there are three main ways you can find an apartment in Bangkok: use an agent, search online, or walk around.

No matter which option you choose, the rental price you pay is still roughly the same. Searching online or walking doesn’t necessarily decrease prices, while using an agent won’t drastically increase prices. That’s because Thailand has a competitive rental industry.

Hiring an Agent
Using an agent can make the process of finding an apartment easier because they do all the hard work.

Make sure to hire a professional agent who knows the area you want to live in. A professional agent who knows the area will help you find a room quickly and within your budget and needs. Besides finding a place to rent, they can also help you with problems, recommend reliable handypersons and maids, and more.

However, real estate agents in Thailand prefer to work with long-term renters. Therefore, if you plan to rent for under a year, using an agent might not be an option.

Searching Online
There are various rental sites to get an idea of options and prices in Bangkok. You should be able to search and compare rentals on the websites without having to go to the building.

Some rental websites, such as FazWaz, have a 3D Walkthrough feature, which will help you get an idea of how the entire apartment looks.

Numerous websites are also available for short-term rentals, such as Airbnb. However, keep in mind that you have to stay for over 30 days for legal reasons if you want to use Airbnb.

No matter what website you use, always be wary of the information as it could be misleading. Always see and inspect the apartment in person before booking or signing a lease.

Walking Around
You can look around on foot for apartments in Bangkok, but it can be a hit or miss.

When walking around, you can see the apartment directly and talk to the property manager. Some apartments also allow you to look at the rooms without an appointment. Besides, strolling around the neighborhood help you experience the area to know if the neighborhood is right for you.

Keep in mind that not everyone can speak English when you want to talk to the property manager or staff.

Key Points

  • There are three main ways you can find an apartment in Bangkok: use an agent, search online, or walk around.
  • In general, rent in Bangkok is significantly lower than most cities its size.
  • In Bangkok, you can choose between older apartments, modern apartments, serviced apartments, or luxury duplex and penthouses.

The Cost of Renting an Apartment in Bangkok

Many foreigners choose to relocate to Bangkok due to the lower cost of living, but how much does it actually cost to rent an apartment in this city?

Everyone has their own preference and lifestyle, so it can be hard to pinpoint the exact number. But, in general, rent in Bangkok is significantly lower than most cities its size. Rental prices of newer buildings might be on par with smaller urban areas throughout Europe and the US, but you tend to get a lot of facilities. Rentals in Bangkok usually come with gyms, swimming pools, saunas, and security guards.

Of course, if you rent a place without a gym or swimming pool, the rent will be a lot lower.

The rental prices range from 1,500 THB per month for a basic, dorm-like room to 500,000 THB a month for a penthouse in a popular neighborhood.

Some of the factors that determine the rental prices are as follows:

  • The neighborhood where the apartment is located.
  • Extra facilities offered.
  • Proximity to a BTS or MRT station.
  • Age and condition of the building.

Types of Apartments In Bangkok

In Bangkok, your options include modern apartments, older apartments, and serviced apartments. Each type offer different amenities and lifestyle,

  • Modern Apartments – Modern apartments are usually small but nicely furnished and located near the BTS or MRT. They are usually comfortable and convenient, with prices starting at 18,000 THB a month. Some modern apartments come with plenty of facilities, such as gyms and swimming pools. Note that some modern apartments in Bangkok are offered as short-term rentals due to lower occupancy rates.
  • Older apartments – Older apartments are usually more affordable, with bigger space, when compared to modern apartments. However, they usually come with limited or no facilities. The price of older apartments usually starts from 12,000 THB a month.
  • Serviced apartments -Serviced apartments usually offer regular cleaning and are nicely furnished. In some cases, room service by an in-house or nearby restaurant is provided. Most serviced apartments cost around 35,000 THB to 75,000 THB a month.
  • Duplexes and Penthouses – If luxury accommodation is what you are looking for, you can find plenty of them in Bangkok.

Bangkok has many different types of apartments that cater to different types of lifestyles.

Rental Leases In Bangkok

The rental leases and contracts in Thailand might be slightly different from what you’re used to at home.

There’s no Landlord-Tenant Act in Thailand, and the legal basis for the rental contracts is the Hire of Property section in the Civil and Commercial Code of Thailand. Below are some of the things that may be included in your rental leases:

  • Terms – In Bangkok, the standard rental length is 12 months. If you want to rent for less than 12 months, you might have to talk to the owner directly and negotiate. For leases that are longer than three years, the leases need to be registered at the Land Department. However, it might be harder to find a three-year lease in Bangkok.
  • Furniture – Furniture in Bangkok is usually signed for in a separate lease.
  • Maintenance and Repair – Stating who pays for minor repairs and maintenance, such as termite damage or a broken air condition, should be clearly stated in the lease.
  • Utilities – Some landlords don’t include utility bills into the rent, meaning they pass the bill to you. However, others charge you an inflated rate that you pay to them. Therefore, it’s best to pay the bills yourself.
  • Deposits – The standard deposit in Thailand is two months. However, a law passed in 2018 stated that landlords could only collect a one-month deposit if they own more than five units. It’s possible to get 100% of your deposit back since landlords have to return your deposit if there is no damage.

Finding the right apartment to rent in Bangkok will be easier if you hire an agent.

The Location

One of the most important things to consider when renting is location.

When finding a place to rent in Bangkok, you have to consider the length of your daily commutes. It is best that you choose a place near the BTS or MRT or within walking distance from work. If you have children, you may also want to pick a place that is close to their schools. The traffic jams in Bangkok can be bad, so if you don’t want to get stuck in traffic, you should avoid renting a place that is too far away from your workplace.

Another thing to consider is the apartment’s proximity to amenities. Find out how far it is to the nearest supermarkets and hospitals, in case of emergency.

What to Keep In Mind When Renting an Apartment In Bangkok

Before you start looking for an apartment in Bangkok, make sure to keep the following things in mind:

  • Language Barriers – Remember that most landlords can only speak Thai, so the leases are most likely in Thai-language.
  • Tourism and Nightlife – Rent in areas with a lot of tourist sites and hotels are usually more expensive. The amenities around the apartment may also offer higher prices. In addition, if you don’t want to have any noise problems, look for apartments that are far from nightlife areas.
  • Pets – Not many apartments in Thailand allow pets. If you have a four-legged companion, it’s best to look in older buildings
  • Special Needs – It can be a challenge to find an apartment that caters to special need. In most cases, modern apartment buildings are wheelchair accessible. However, to be on the safer side, it’s best that you work with a Thai property service.