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Hong Kong investors seek out Thailand properties for higher rental return, capital gains

Buyers from the city account for a third of foreign purchased homes in Thai developer MQDC’s portfolio.

Investors and expatriates from Hong Kong are showing a growing interest in Thailand's residential property market, enticed not just by the affordability, but also by the prospects of securing higher rental yields and achieving substantial capital gains.

“Hong Kong buyers are drawn to Bangkok by relative affordability, with price per square metre recently estimated at about a fifth of that in the territory,” Wilawan Brenig, vice president for International Market Development at Magnolia Quality Development Corporation Limited (MQDC), told Hong Kong Business. “Buyers are also entering a market that, driven by the city’s unwavering global appeal, offers solid appreciation and rental returns.”

Data from JLL Thailand showed that the market yield for prime apartments in Bangkok is 4.8%. The sales rate of super-prime and prime condominiums in the city is also high at 83.0% and 80.0%, respectively.

In 9M23, the foreign condominium ownership in Thailand has gone up 37.6% YoY.

MQDC is amongst real estate developers in Thailand that has experienced the growing interest of Hong Kong buyers in the Land of Smiles. Brenig said Hong Kong is one of their five largest foreign markets.

“Buyers from the territory contribute significantly to the third of our homes that are purchased by foreign buyers,” he said.

“Hong Kong-based buyers have already contributed to the success of [our] previous projects like ICONSIAM – Magnolias Waterfront Residences and The Residences at Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok. Expats from Hong Kong are tenants as well as buyers in Whizdom Connect Sukhumvit, Whizdom Essence Sukhumvit, and Whizdom Inspire Sukhumvit,” he added.

Preferences of Hong Kong buyers

When purchasing properties for residential use, Brenig said most Hong Kong buyers prefer 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom units or 2-bedroom, 1-bathroom units.

In terms of size, Hong Kong buyers often select units spanning 40 square metres (sqm) to 60 sqm.

“They often seek residence suitable for comfortable family living and in walking distance to mass transit,” Brenig shared.

In Whizdom Inspire Sukhumvit, MQDC has specially allocated 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom units on high floors and sized approximately 40 sqm-60 sqm, for buyers from Hong Kong. The final 15 units of the development will also be made available to Hong Kong buyers.

Hong Kong buyers aiming to use residential units as investments tend to seek out 1-bedroom, 1-bathroom condos with excellent transport links, such as Whizdom COEX Pinklao.

“The Whizdom brand is now well established in the Hong Kong market and the location at True Digital Park is especially attractive to buyers from the territory,” Brenig said.

The Forestias, The Aspen Tree

Brenig said he also expects Hong Kong buyers to be a “key component” of MQDC’s several projects at The Forestias, including The Forestias Signature Series, Mulberry Grove, and The Aspen Tree.

The Forestias is a 64-hectare luxury multi-generation community consisting of multiple residential projects under MQDC’s different brands.

“The location [of The Forestias] at Bangna-Trad is a fast-growing business district and it’s just 30 minutes from Suvarnabhumi Airport. Expat residents, in particular, will appreciate having every amenity for an amazing lifestyle onsite whilst being close to the centre of Bangkok with excellent connections to the Eastern Economic Corridor,” Brenig said.

Justin Wong, marketing manager at SQM Global Properties, the partner of MQDC for The Forestias project, said the development will be “highly valued by Hong Kong investors looking for a tranquil yet connected living environment.”

“The Forestias stands as a testament to the harmonious blend of urban living and natural surroundings. Its lush greenery and forested heart offer a serene escape from the bustling city life, something we know is so rare in Hong Kong,” Wong said.

“For Hong Kong investors, The Forestias doesn’t just represent a home, but a smart investment in a rapidly growing area of Bangkok. It is a future-centric project that promises long-term value and appeal,” Wong added.

Situated within The Forestias is The Aspen Tree, a residential project aimed for residents aged 50 and above.

Dr. Vithaya Sintharapantorn, head of Project Marketing for The Aspen Tree at The Forestias, said the development offers four key components that will attract buyers from across the world, including those from Hong Kong: lifetime home, lifetime services, lifetime activities, and full-fledged holistic wellness activities.

Elaborating on the key components, Dr. Vithaya said The Aspen Tree will offer daily breakfast for occupants, weekly housekeeping, and a 24-hour concierge services, amongst others.

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