Bangkok House Rental Market Overview
When most foreigners think of houses in the Kingdom of Thailand, the beautiful villas along the plentiful oceanfronts probably come to mind. Unfortunately in the city of Bangkok much of the landed properties available for rent are drab to say the least. The polar opposite of the condominium and apartment market, rental houses and townhouses have far greater demand than supply. This is not to say there are not any modern, Western standard houses available to rent in Bangkok but the supply is not anywhere near as plentiful as condos and apartments. The reason is simple, most nice family houses have been occupied by the owner’s families for years and even generations. When the kids grow up and leave the house the owners usually rent them out and since the land on which houses lie on has become so valuable that the owners don’t feel any need to upgrade their house or build a new one. In addition, Thailand land developers have very little incentive to build new houses as creating lowrise condos and apartments offers them far more income potential.
Primary Features of Bangkok Houses, Townhouses & Villas that Determine Price
The primary determinant of any property price, the location will largely determine the price of your house rental in central Bangkok. For a house in central Bangkok, the combination of the overall quality of the neighborhood and proximity to the main roads, public transportation, shopping, grocery stores, etc. will cause the rent prices of similar properties in different locations to vary greatly.
Most families who rent a house in Bangkok want a swimming pool. There are only a handful house compounds in central Bangkok and most have communal swimming pools, these houses/villas will cost less than houses with a private swimming pool. The majority of townhouses also have a swimming pool in the compound.
The houses and villas for rent in Bangkok with a private swimming pool are the most desirable and the most expensive. Often times the term ‘private’ is used loosely as while the pool can only be accessed by you and your family, there may be other houses or condos which can see the pool and pool area. Private pools are common in houses and villas in central Bangkok but almost non-existant for townhouses.
Refers to any outdoor space that is not a balcony is referred to a garden in Thailand. Some houses in Bangkok have the gardens on the rooftop and some have the garden in what would be called the back or front yard in some countries. Bangkok houses usually have at least a small private garden area, the larger the garden, the more expensive the house will be as land size increased. Townhouses occasionally have gardens as well, sometimes shared and sometimes private.
The vast majority of houses for rent in Bangkok are partially furnished. If you want a house in Bangkok fully furnished, it may take some negotiation as most house owners don’t bother to to make much of an effort to furnish their rental houses nicely because A. most families who rent them put a lot of wear & tear on a house over the years and B. most families who rent houses do so for the long-term and either move their own furniture from their previous home in Bangkok or ship their furniture from overseas.
- Commercial Property
General House/Villa & Townhouse Availability in Central Bangkok based on Price Range
Here is a breakdown of the general availability of the houses you will for rent in central Bangkok along the primary BTS line from around Siam to Phra Khanong. Remember this is only in regards to the prime real estate which occupies central Bangkok. The property descriptions in each price range are to give you a general idea of what you will find, rare as they may be there will always be exceptions.
- Sub ฿25,000 – For the most part you will not be able to find any houses or townhouses for less than ฿25,000 per month in central Bangkok. If you are ‘lucky’ enough to find one, chances are it will be small, awkward and poorly located.
- ฿25-50,000 – There are some houses and mostly townhouses for rent in this price range, the vast majority will not be modern and some may not have what have become standard amenities such as air conditioning. Landed properties in this range will almost always be far away from the main roads and BTS or MRT stations.
- ฿50-75,000 – Detached houses for rent in Bangkok are not common in this price range although townhouses lie in this price range. For the most part townhouses in this range are surely not going to be located within walking distance to any BTS skytrain or MRT subway station but some may lie in compounds with communal swimming pools. Villas or houses with a private swimming pool are almost unheard of in this price range.
- ฿75-120,000 – The most common price range for townhouses in Bangkok. Most townhouses whether on a small complex or in secured compounds with or without swimming pools will not surpass this price range. The detached houses and villas that exist in this price range exist are usually not very modern and likely have not been upgraded from their original condition which could make them 20-30+ years old.
- ฿120-150,000 – Just below the most common price range, houses and villas priced between ฿120-150k are a mix of modern and old houses in a variety of conditions and ages. You will not find many high luxury detached houses in this price range as above it but they do exist and finding them will likely take more time and patience than if you have a greater housing budget.
- ฿150-250,000 – Most modern, Western standard 3+ bedroom detached houses lie in this price range. Most Bangkok house renters are surprised when they see the tremendous variety of houses which exist in this price range that include everything from houses that would be considered a ‘fixer-uppers’ at best by most to superbly done pool villas. Essentially when renting a house in Bangkok size and location determine the rental price more than the perceived quality of the living space.
- ฿250-350,000 – The number of houses and villas for rent in Bangkok in this range is few and far between, while townhouses are non-existent. You may think that houses in this price range are all going to be very high quality and while most certainly are, those older houses on larger plots of land approaching 1 rai (1,600 square meters / .4 acres) will demand a high asking price.
- Over ฿350,000 – Not many houses or villas exist in this price range and the ones that do usually occupy very large plots of land or are situated on commercial land plots in ultra prime areas.
Continue to Part 2: Renting a house in Bangkok – Tips & Tricks