Over the last few years, Pattaya has witnessed a large transformation with a major shift in demographics of its residents. This transformation has done a great deal to clean up the image of the community as well as attract millions of visitors arriving year after year. These projects have been a major investment, but much needed to improve the infrastructure of the city.
Motorway Expansion to U-Tapao Airport
The U-Tapao Airport in Rayong, Pattaya's neighbor, has undergone expansion in the last few years. With an increase in the number of flights, both domestic and internationally, both in scheduled and charter flights, Pattaya, being so near, has naturally been a beneficiary. Previously, the roads were not accustomed to mass transit, but rather small scale local commutes, but this has changed as Highway 331 to U-Tapao has expantes. The 331 will connect with Highway 7 just a few kilometers to the east of Central Pattaya and divert the majority of the traffic away from the Sukhumvit Road and take traffic directly into Pattaya stimulating the economy.
Tunnel on Sukhumvit Road
The tunnel on Sukhumvit Road, which opened in 2017, has been quite a success story despite the lengthy delays and high expense. The 2 kilometer tunnel spans 4 lanes, each about 4 meters wide. A traffic island separates the incoming and outgoing traffic and is ornately decorated inside with a landmark dolphin on the outside exciting those who enter to the beach life they are about to enter into.
Improvement to Drainage
Pattaya has been no stranger to flash flooding as much of the natural drainage systems have become new construction and high rise hotels. Additionally, the sewage system was outdated and not modified for the mass amounts of tourism the town now sees. In the past few years however, massive efforts have been made to address rainwater runoff and sewage issues throughout much of the city.
Thailand is famous for the masses of cable hanging precariously from telephone poles. Not only did this look messy and downright ugly to many foreigners, but it can be an electrical hazard. Pattaya, with a relatively recent boom over the past few decades, is rampant with now defunct internet cables and analog television cabling. Now that these cables are without function, due to most of the city benefiting from fiber optic cabling, a decision was made to move cabling underground to clean up the appearance of the city. This is, of course, a major engineering task, but we have already seen cables beginning to be moved underground on both Pattaya Klang and North Pattaya Road.
Improvements to Road in East Pattaya
The road network in East Pattaya faced many challenges trying to cope with the large number of villages that have grown up over the last few years in the area. Previously a small fishing area, East Pattaya is now one of the most popular areas for expats to live. The area already had a nice infrastructure as far as amenities like shops, markets, restaurants and bars, but the existing roads had not been updated for quite some time. Recently, many major roads are expected to widen and take place shortly after drainage work improvements that are required on Soi Khao Noi and Soi Khao Talo.
Improvements to the Beach Fronts
The Beach Front on Pattaya Beach Road, the pedestrian part at least, underwent major renovations a few years ago making a far pleasanter place to walk and spend time. Walking areas were made wider, dangerous, older palms were removed and replaced with younger, strategically placed trees and efforts were made to improve the crossings. Once again, this involved significant expenditure but it is something that will leave a lasting legacy.
Similar improvements were made in Jomtien and although there were significant objections, improvements were carried out with many residents and businesses now conceding that the changes were for the best. The beaches themselves are the next areas that will witness investment in infrastructure due to their erosion – again something recognized by City Hall.
High Speed Rail Link
The long-awaited high speed rail link between Don Mueang Airport in Bangkok and U-Tapao Airport in Rayong province, officially called in quite the literal name as “High-Speed Rail Linking Three Airports Project” is expected to begin construction in the near future.
The train is projected to have a speed of 250 kilometers per hour over the 220 kilometer long distance when it opens in the next few years according to the Secretary-General of the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) Office. In addition, the project will increase tourist numbers by eight percent due to the greater convenience. The project is expected to handle 15 million passengers in the next five years, 30 million passengers over 15 years and 60 million passengers in the next 20 years and will generate a return of 700 billion baht. It is expected to create 19,000 new jobs in the EEC according to the Employers' Confederation of Thai Trade and Industry.
There will be a series of stations along the route with Pattaya being among the most important. This will greatly reduce travelling times between cities and is expected to provide yet another boost to the city’s tourist market and is expected to be the signal most significant improvement in infrastructure that Pattaya in its recent history.
The improvements to Pattaya’s infrastructure along with the new exciting commercial developments such as the Terminal 21 that is coming to North Pattaya Road and Tesco at Mabprachan means that the city is becoming increasingly attractive to both Thai and foreign investors.
Buying off-plan is common practice in Thailand. It dominates the real estate industry with many developers selling a majority of available units before the first shovel breaks ground. Securing off plan property has its benefits, especially for the individual who wants an investment as it typically earns the highest returns. Purchasing units early can be much cheaper than buying completed units and will allow for appreciation sooner, especially in areas with limited land and high prices. That said, buying off-plan is not without its risks, and many potential investors may wonder if it is a wise move. After all, you won’t be able to see the finished product for years, and it can be not easy to check up on it while construction is underway. So keep in mind the following things to consider.
Choose a reputable developer
If you’re considering an off-plan investment condominium, it is essential to be confident in the developer of the project. Check their history to see if they have ever failed to complete a project or have been late transferring units to owners both with foreign and Thai nationals. If they are reputable, they will have a history of project completion and even home construction that can be verified.
The sales materials and marketing photos used to promote the development and get an idea of what the condominium will look like will usually be in the form of artist renderings. Therefore, you can look for photos of condominiums that have already been completed by the developer to gauge the quality the firm delivers more accurately.
Even better. If possible, you can go to see a unit for sale at one of the developer’s already finished condominiums. While the layout may be different, chances are the unit size will be similar. Investigate how it looks and then compare it with marketing brochures that are likely to include graphic renderings. You’ll be able to see how close the developer comes to matching it.
Location, Location, Location!
Shrewd investors understand that they are investing not only in the project but also in its neighborhood. In the United States, the slogan “Location, location, location” sums up this concept hitting all the key concepts. If you build a mansion in the ghetto, the value is immediately downgraded. Therefore, it is a good idea to find out if there are any future infrastructure projects or plans to build retail or commercial centers in the area that can have a positive impact on the property’s price for the future.
It is also essential to study the contract carefully. Pay close attention to the default clauses and the payment plan structure, which we will detail below in the step-by-step process. Using an experienced real estate agent such as FazWaz can prevent you from making mistakes.
Incomplete or late projects
The most pressing concern a buyer may have about an off-plan condominium or apartment is what if the project is never built or left derelict and unfinished. Another worry is a possible delay in construction, postponing investment returns. It is because of these reasons, that one must make sure the firm sends out regular updates on how the project is progressing proof. You can also regularly visit the site with the sales advisers as build work progresses to ensure nothing has been added or left off the plans.
Timing is everything
Many companies have pre-selling periods with exclusive deals and special offers at their opening launch parties. Most developers want to realize revenue before starting construction and are willing to offer lower prices up until the point of breaking ground to be sure that they obtain enough financing to make the project worthwhile.
Units in off-plan condominiums are almost always available on a first-come, first-serve basis, so an early bird policy will help you get the particular unit desired. We recommend following the 8 steps FazWaz has outlined to ensure everything with an off plan project is going to plan. To conduct your due diligence you must:
Step 1 - Selection of the unit and agreement of the contractual terms
On average, developer pricing is fixed so it is important to be aware of the position of the unit in the project and what features and amenities it has to offer.
Step 2 - Reservation Agreement
The reservation agreement will take the unit off the public market to be reserved under your name and provides an outline with the purchasing terms and timelines involved with the investment.
Step 3 - Reservation Deposit
Payment of the reservation deposit will ensure the unit is removed from the open market. Some developers may vary in this fee depending on the unit or the market at the time, but on average this is about 2% of the total purchase price. Some deposits are refundable provided the buyer follows the best practices and due diligence. Always be sure to work with a reputable developer with a history of completing projects and insist on receiving a payment slip for the transfer.
Step 4 - Sales and Purchase Agreement
The purchase agreement, with a 30-day review period, states the terms and conditions of the sales and purchase of the project. The Agreement should outline the planned completion of the project as well as each benchmark to be met along the process of construction.
Step 5 - 1st Contract Payment
The first payment which typically can range anywhere from 20% to 40% of the purchase price is made in this step. For non-residents, this fund must be transferred into Thailand from an overseas bank account.
Step 6 - Payment Installments
The schedule of payments will be outlined throughout the building cycle. Typically, at each milestone in the construction of the project, payment of a prearranged percentage of the sale is to be made.
Step 7 - Snag List
A snagging list is a list of all the problems, or “snags” a unit has prior to being handed over to the owner that must be addressed such as any defects in the property. This stage must be completed 2 to 3 weeks prior to the handover.
Step 8 - Transfer
When the development is complete, the owner will pay the remaining balance and the keys will be issued. One is not required to live in Thailand at the time of the handover as many investors will hire a third party to do this on their behalf.
With miles of beachfront coastline, beautiful museums and temples, and a large area of rainforests and farmland, Pattaya has a great deal of potential for new luxury condos and villa projects. In early 2020, the COVID pandemic took the world by surprise and put a stop to almost everything; however, investors are still keen to look at opportunities as and when they are allowed to revisit Thailand. However, Pattaya has changed dramatically, at the moment no longer a result of positive market forces but may turn out to be due to the adverse effects of the worldwide pandemic.
The lack of footfall, while international borders have been so severely restricted this year, can no more keenly be felt than in a city like Pattaya which has such dependency on tourism. For even though domestic travel is heartily encouraged by the Thai government, many businesses cannot survive without international visitors.
However, if you look at what Thailand has in mind for Pattaya, then it may be that some businesses that will close may aid the rebranding and repositioning of the city. As far back as 2014, the Thai Ministry of Tourism has expressed a desire for sites including Bangkok. Phuket and Pattaya continue to develop as quality destinations, rebranded to attract high-spending tourists, developers, and investors alike.
For Pattaya expressly, it was stated that “Pattaya, which is now stereotyped as a nightlife and beach resort city, will be refocused as a world-class sport and family destination.”
Since then the increase in international standard golf courses, cycle tracks, sailing events, and improved sporting facilities in and around Pattaya has helped towards this aim. Even before COVID -19, there was a purge on guesthouses that did not have the correct hotel licenses. It has meant that many, mostly suited to backpackers and single travelers, have fallen by the wayside in favour of new 5-star hotels arriving.
Many areas of Thailand are famous for having large populations of homeless dogs, referred to as Soi Dogs, as a Soi is the Thai word for small road or ally where these dogs often can be found lounging about. The good news with Pattaya, is while there are many Soi Dogs, the vast number of Expats living in the area have brought with them their fondness for “mans best friend” both Dog and Cat, so the typical dismissal of a dog as a potential pet, due in large part to the abundance of mangy mutts and crusty cats, is subdued and many pet friendly condos and apartments are available. Pattaya has even enlisted the help of the Navy to help with the animal population. Under the Navy programme, three shelters will be set up near the Royal Thai Fleet, which currently provides shelter for over 350 dogs and 80 cats.
New shelters will be established at the Sattahip branch of Royal Thai Marine Corps to keep 500 dogs and 100 cats at each new facility. It’s truly a wonderful program and goes a long way to clean up the image of pets in Thailand and has led to the acceptance of pet friendly establishments in this beach community.
We can help you find the best property for you and your companimal to keep your furry family together forever. Click here for the latest Pet Friendly locations powered by FazWaz.
Pattaya real estate market and trends
Pattaya is host to a range of activities and attractions that make this region an excellent place to invest. Trends in the real estate market are inspired and stimulated by the plethora of natural beauty of the surrounding beachfront and the action and adventure keep the economy robust. Anything from the relaxing simple pleasure of beautiful scenery of the eastern seaboard to the most lively party streets in the nation.
Pattaya is home to some of the most amazing architectural marvels as well and all of these are within reach. You can truly make a wise investment by investing in a property in Pattaya and enjoy nature, art, and culture in ways that differ from anywhere else in the Kingdom. From the raw beauty of the tropical rainforest, the pristine islands, action packed beach fronts, and even the glitz and glamour of the cabaret and walking street make it an unforgettable area to many.
Pattaya’s walking street is among the grandest in Thailand and is heralded as a must-do. Pattay’s walking street, to put it into perspective, is famed to be the biggest and busiest hotspot in Thailand and the relative party central of the nation at large. This is the site of the New Years ball drop. Think Time Square for New Years, set in the tropics mixed with a perpetual Bourbon Street vibe and you’ll have a better idea of how Pattaya lets loose along its famous Walking Street.The interesting thing other than the general level of excitement, is there is a great deal to do in the area. You could spend nearly every night for an entire week and still find new places to explore alone it’s neon bathed strip.
Sanctuary of Truth
Much like the sand mandala art of the Tibetan monks, who painstakingly place ornately colored sands in large elaborate mandals, only to have them carried off grain by grain in the winds as a reminder of the impermanence of life and the need to let go the things that bind us, Pattaya’s Sanctuary of Truth is a similar, thought somewhat more permanent, marvel and blend of architecture and philosophy. The massive teak structure is a continual work in progress, depicting lessons from a variety of religions stressing the importance of respect for one's elders, being aware of the company we keep, and an awareness of how we treat one another. It is a remarkable moment to reflect on the higher things. The structure is hand carved by a multitude of artisans and the work will continue to evolve as it is located along the coastal pinusular of the region and the intentionally untreated wood slowly succumbs to the warm salty air of the ocean breeze reclaiming the structure bit by bit. The Sanctuary of Truth is absolutely gorgeous and a must-see both for the eyes and for the spirit. Unlike most ornate structures, in Thailand, the Sanctuary is a museum and monument to the human condition and not a house of worship proper like a traditional Temple.
Grand Burlesque and Cabaret Shows
Tiffany's Cabaret Show is hosted in a marvelous grand theater with ornate marble like architecture giving it an extravagant feel. The show is over 30 years running and rivals any other in Thailand. The hour-long performance depicts Thai cultural historistorical events that unified the nation and celebrates its diverse community.
The performance includes a Bollywood style musical take on the Indian Raj, traditional Korean fan dances, an homage to China's Imperial past and evolution to its great leap forward, and Thailand history told through traditional Thai dance, American Broadway style show tunes, and hilarious slapstick burlesque.
Thailand is an open-minded place for non-binary lifestyles and the Transgender community is celebrated in Tiffany’s Burlesque in high fashion and haute couture. It is a must-see in Pattaya and both an educational and entertaining adventure that awaits.
Nong Nooch Tropical Garden and Cultural Village
The Nong Nooch botanical garden is a masterpiece of traditional 17th century French style regal gardening, at over 2 kilometers in size. It is the most elaborate display of flowers in the Kingdom, complete with succulents, bonsai, and many tropical cultivars. Orchardists will find the location a must-see, with over 670 native and hybrid species of orchids on display. Additionally, there are performances of traditional Thai dancing, Muay Thai boxers, and traditional drumming all along the Cultural Village.
Koh Larn (Coral Island)
While the narrow Pattaya beaches can become quite popular, often frequented by locals and tourists alike and bordered by high rise hotels and luxury villas, a secluded getaway is just a short ferry ride away to the beautiful Koh Larn, also known as Coral Island. The island is situated roughly 8 kilometers west of Pattaya Beach and has long been a locals retreat. Since the island is close, visitors can easily go there in the morning hours, enjoy the peak hours of the day, and return late afternoon.
Frequently asked questions
What do I need to know about Pattaya?
Pattaya is a beachside community located on the Eastern Seaboard of the Gulf of Thailand. It is about 150 kilometers southeast of Bangkok. Technically only the central part of the region is formally named “Pattaya” and was originally as a small fishing village. The area is currently encompassed by the districts of Central Pattaya, South Pattaya and Pratamnak Hill. Greater Pattaya, referred to as Pattaya City, is a mashup of several districts that stretches about 30 kilometers along the coastline. When investing in property in the region you probably will not find the word “Pattaya” in your address so it is important to note this when you begin your search, fortunately our partners at FazWaz will help you navage the district.
An important demarcation marker is the main highway of Sukhumvit Road. This highway spanning more than 400 kilometers runs all the way to Bangkok to the south eastern province of Trat, and passes through Pattaya.
Pattaya can be visualised into four conventional areas when it comes to real estate. Central Pattaya, which is the historic center, Northern, Southern, and the more recently developed area of Eastern Pattaya. Each area respectively has its own districts and many blend into each other.
What are the best types of properties in Pattaya?
While Pattaya has many developing areas that are ideal for investment, some of the key areas of late for new condos and apartments are along the coastal areas of Naklua, Central Pattaya, Pratamnak, Southern Pattaya and Jomtien. These regions have less area for development so the tendency is to expand upwards in existing footprint with luxurious new highrise and even low rise projects. With the lul in international travel in recent times, Pattaya has benefited from general road and drainage maintenance over the last few months along the coastal areas allowing for new developments. Improved links with Bangkok, together with the development of the Eastern Economic Corridor the region is more prime than ever to host more residents. For those looking for larger property with land and a home, Eastern Pattaya is ideal as it is the current area of expansion and
What are the most popular areas in Pattaya?
Pratumnak Hill is often referred to as the Beverly Hills of Pattaya. The attentive traveler will notice that around Thailand, there is usually a hill (elevation), with a Buddhist temple (Wat) near any village in Thailand. Of course, there is the Golden Buddha place in Pattaya, and it is situated on Pratamnak (though, in fairness, it should be noted that the construction of a giant statue of Buddha in Pattaya began only in 1977).
In short, Pratamnak is:The most green and clean area of Pattaya: Rising 120-meters from sea-level, nature changing before your eyes.The most beautiful park in Pattaya. The most beautiful views of the city (the central part, Jomtien) and the bay. Here is the residence of a member of the revered Thai Royal Family, therefore this is the most protected and safe area of Pattaya.
Clean and quiet beaches.
Pratamnak is one of the most elite and expensive places in Pattaya. According to Pattaya Realty statistics, price of homes for sale here are the highest, and ,according to Colliers International, price per square meter in a new condominium is only slightly inferior to the elite new north.
Pratamnak, of course, is a more secluded and quiet place than the central area of Pattaya, however, because of the large tourist attractions, you can find a lot of overly active "tour-packagers" on its streets which does not define Pratamnak as the ultimate perfect place for calm resort life.
However, at night it is very quiet as all the night “attractions" are located at a distance.
While geographically Pratamnak is located very close to the center and to Jomtien, there are no main public transport routes (baht buses or as they are officially called – song teaw). However, there are numerous motor bike taxis and with the recent introduction of air conditioned metered taxis, transport is no longer an issue.
Infrastructure of Pratamnak is well developed; there are many cafes, restaurants, gyms, massage parlors and other places for entertainment and recreation. There are no large shopping centers here but you are only minutes away.
Pratamnak is a popular place for wealthy Thais who own property here and come to Pattaya from Bangkok for the weekend. Therefore, in most resorts the pools will be quiet and empty during the week. Pratamnak is suitable for various categories of tourists and visitors and purchasing of a small condo will be good investment for subsequent renting on short-term lease. Large apartments and houses are expensive in terms of the lease and are more suited to the long term corporate rental market.
If you are looking for privacy and harmony with nature - this place is definitely not for you. The main motto here is movement! Beach-road together with the famous Walking-street (located next to the South Pattaya area) are the "Epicenter" of nightlife. There are several large shopping centers in Central Pattaya, as well as countless bars, restaurants, various shops, massage parlors and other entertainments. Perhaps this is the most populous area of Pattaya with constant traffic on the streets and throngs of people until the early hours of the morning.
This area is probably not the best place to relax in the sun as the beach here is a fairly noisy and crowded. However, this disadvantage is completely replaced by the quantity and quality of other attractions that are within walking distance, which in turn, makes it unnecessary to use your own vehicles.
There is very limited high-end housing stock In Central Pattaya save a few condominiums and there is very little new residential construction. There are however numerous luxury branded hotels and, at the same time, one can discover large quantities of cheap guesthouses and small hotels with an inexpensive daily rent.
Central Pattaya is probably most suited to people coming here for a lively holiday, preferring to spend here a short fun filled vacation. We can also recommend the area to expats who need to live close to work. Due to the high demand for short-term lease (including the low season), Central Pattaya is ideal for investment property purchase.
Below is a comparison chart of areas of Pattaya on various characteristics. Purchases and rental prices are shown in thousands of Thai baht per square meter. The secondary market prices are based on Pattaya Realty statistics with minor amendments, incorporating the data from other real estate companies. Prices for new developing condos are based on the published report of Colliers International (for Q1 2014).
What is the Pattaya Lifestyle like?
Aside from the busy nightlife that makes Pattaya a famous destination, it is much more than the Sin City of Thailand that tourists make it out to be. Pattaya is an expanding town that is catering to the elite in its eastward expansion and in it’s coastline. Take a walk around Pattaya and you’ll find it is quite a popular location for the retirement community who wish to have their hard earned savings go a long way. Real estate is an excellent investment in this region of Thailand and those who know it are ready to capitalise on this fledgling market. Additionally Pattaya is a center for many festivals, both local and international.
Chinese New Year, which is celebrated on the lunar calendar usually takes place around late January to early February, is celebrated by Pattaya's Thai-Chinese community which is quite large. The elaborate festival is filled with dragon parades, exciting lion dances, and elaborate fireworks displays.
The Daytona Bike week pales in comparison to Burapa Pattaya Bike Week. It is Thailand's most popular motorcycle event drawing motorcycle enthusiasts from all over the region.
Pattaya hosts an International Music Festival annually.. It attracts several styles of music performed by International and local artists.
Songkran festival is a Thai national event but the festivities in Pattaya, locally called Wan Lai, takes place each year in mid April. It differs from most other Songkran festivals of Thailand in its own unique ways. It lasts several days longer and, besides water fights, the event includes beauty pageants, musical performances, cultural shows, fireworks, and water sports competitions.
World class Regattas are held in Pattaya towards the end of Aril as well. The Top of the Gulf Regatta is a week long sailing event that
Top of the Gulf Regatta is a week-long sailing event held each year. The event is described as having “become one of the premier regattas in Asia and the largest multi-class regatta in the region, hosted by South East Asia's largest Marina, Ocean Marina, both the regatta and the marina have been honoured by peers and the public around the world.”
he region also hosts multiple beauty pageants and is renowned for putting fourth multiple Miss Thailand contestants.
Top 5 reasons to invest in Pattaya real estate
Pattaya has a multitude of reasons to invest, not the least of which is the natural beauty of the beaches. Let's discuss the top few:
- Improving infrastructure - Pattaya continues to catch up to the Capitol city in terms of improving infrastructure. Proposed Skylines with luxury gondolas will soon traverse the mountain tops, city wide transport continues to increase with more ease of access to the local bus system as well as the long range airport bus which is continuing to modernize. Most hotels provide shuttles to major shopping centres and Airport expansion plans will provide more access to the already far-reaching HKT International Airport and while most travel by personal car or motorbike, Pattaya was an early adopter to ride-share platforms whose drivers are vetted, certified safe drivers and eager to assist anyone in their comings and goings. Pattaya is continually seeking to improve its infrastructure which makes it a very stable location for investment long into the future.
- Healthcare facilities - Attractive to both investors and retirees, Pattaya is increasingly stealing the stage from the Capitol city as the top destination for Medical Tourism. With some of the best medical centers in the nation, Pattaya has many healthcare facilities that rival any other in the First World yet offer highly affordable prices. MyMediTravel.com lists Pattaya as a top destination for both affordability and relaxation post treatment.
- Beaches, Views and more Beaches - Pattaya is surrounded by the beautiful waters of the Andaman Sea. As the largest island, Pattaya is home to coastal beach side real estate unlike any other in Thailand and as advancements in materials enter the market, more and more spectacular construction that marries nature and architecture will keep this place exotic and natural whilst providing prime real estate investment opportunities.
- Accessibility - Pattaya is among an elite group of cities in Thailand with an international airport and the main airport is expanding to meet the demands of greater travel. Additionally, Phang Nga, just across the Sarasin bridge of Pattaya, is developing an airport that will increase the range and accessibility further. Bangkok is a short one-hour flight, Udon Thai and Chiang Mai, a little over an hour. Enjoy international travel to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur in just under two hours.
- Rental Returns - Due to its seasonal monsoon, Pattaya has a flux in tourism, however in the high season runs from November to April, nearly half of the calendar year, Pattaya sees some of the highest rental returns on the planet. Coupled with the strengthening of the Thai baht, investors who have thrown their hat into Pattaya Real Estate have made some of the most gains in all the Kingdom.