Buying land in Vietnam

I realise that expats are allowed to buy property, but what are the restrictions on buying land?  Cheers

Hi Fish323. I am Nhi. I am working in a Real estate company. I have knowledge about this legislation. I can help you a litter bit.
.vn
Good luck!

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The forum is a mutual help platform.
If you're interested in helping, not just an attempt at a sale, post advice on the forum.

As far as I know, the vietnamese law allows foreigners to buy and possess land and property. Possession is restricted to a certain number of years though. I suggest you inform yourself intensively about the current legal situation. Let me know if I'm wrong.
Cheers, Timm

Buying land is a big headache even for Vietnamese citizens because of so many fraudulent realtors. Be careful before you leap!! Many of them quote some cheap rate per square meter to attract their 'prey'. When you ask more details (normally people ask less details before see the property) you can understand that price is not same and also the property! When they offer property in their advt. it's in Hoc Mon / Cu Chi, HCMC. In fact the real one may be somewhere far in Long An  :)  Their first offer is a one day tour to the property. If you didn't ask more details then you are in their first 'trap'. Normally Vietnamese are too patience in these cases. Never react  :) . They just go and come back or fall for another trap. Make sure the exact location of property, price after registration (double check it's not a shared ownership in which you never get a pink book) value of house if any or actual cost per square meter for new construction,etc. If land only make sure it is not agricultural land if you are building house. If normal land ask clearly that how many square meter is usage area for new construction. I suggest, expats or their Vietnamese family intend to buy property, just try to buy from the real owner even if it's little old house.  Don't waste your time and money unless it's an actual sale deed with pink book and complete possession of the same.
Again, think some more time whether it's necessary to buy property here or not. The money you are going to spent is your blood and sweat, not mine  :)  Good luck!!

Hi
Thanks for that very informative answer.

Thank you for this information as I am planning to buy a plot of land with my Vietnamese wife later this year.
When I return to Vietnam from the UK.
Kind regards
John

John don't go through the  process if you can't put it in your name. Please read my previous posts when it comes to relatives and land in VN.

Rick

If you are buying a village block, like I did, check to see if is zoned as rice farming land (cheapest to buy), farming land, long term cropping land ( trees, for example), or residential land [đất thổ cư](the most expensive to buy). If it is not residential land, you must pay a hefty tax to get the area of the house rezoned as residential land. You do not need to rezone the entire block.

Check with the village land clerk, or the ward land clerk to ensure that the land has sufficient ownership papers, because a lot of blocks for sale do not have complete papers. It should have a Red Book  [sổ đỏ]. Have the village land clerk come and re-peg the block. Then make sure your neighbours do not move the pegs. This is why Vietnamese always build a good fence long before building the house.

In towns, the structure must comply with building codes. In the countryside there are no building codes, so that owners can build a bamboo shack if they wish. Before building  you must also get permission to build and pay a tax to build, based on the estimated cost of the house. The village or ward land clerk will look after this for you.

When you sign a contract with the builder, I suggest it is a "build only" contract, so that you have control over buying all building materials and house fixtures and tiles.  Having the builder choose these allows him to buy substandard items and charge you for extra.

All building contracts take longer than the contract says. It's a matter of finding good tradesmen and organising them to come at the right time.  If your wife has a close relative in the building trade, employ him to supervise construction with the builder and act as a go-between to assist in getting things done properly.

Apart from the above, be on site all day, every day yourself to help ensure that the build goes well. Good luck.

Yogi would be waiting to see what happens up north of the border before buying overpriced , grubby ,poorly serviced, designed & built rubbish here.

China has some big issues at the moment.  Their markets are crashing, they have over 70 million property's listed and zero interest from anyone.  Analysts are predicting a property crash of massive proportions.

With the Greek debacle , investors are pulling back on emerging economies as well.

Hong Kong has the lowest turnover in property in 20 years, with 98% mortgage stress. Yogi thinks  things are not good in this neck of the woods.   Just sit back and see where the cards fall.    Vietnam has been widely assessed as over priced by at least 40% in their property sector.   

Even my country Australia , is predicted to be in a "bubble" with a correction coming.

The smart money is NOT coming here.     Besides, why buy when rents so ridiculously cheap.  This is one place where you don't need hooks or baggage.

It won't cost anything to sit back, watch and wait.    Let a few crash test dummies test the "legal formalities" here first.  As sure as Yogis ass points to the ground, people will get burnt in this new market for foreigners.  They say      Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.

I was just looking at land prices in Malibu California.   It's  cheaper than here.  $20 a sq meter.
You can buy several acres for $10 a square metre.    Down in Texas you can get a small ranch for 25 cents a metre.   

But hey,....you'll get some really cool neighbours to go with your overpriced dream home here.
I was looking at building here, but the negatives far outweighed the positives.

Sorry, missed this on the above edit.

Ralph in his post stressed the point to make certain of your boundary, and land usage. 
Also to be onsite when the buildings being done.

I know 3 people recently going through the courts because of those reasons.  They didn't do their due diligence OR were promised everything would be Ok.   

These new Laws apply to foreigners.  Up until now , most foreigners have bought land thru their VN wives.  Should a dispute occur, the VN wife will have some clout in the legal proceedings.    It's unknown how a stand alone foreign guy/gal will fare when push comes to shove.   

As Ralph stated , the land zoning has to be verified.    The local sales pitch will.tell you it's Ok to build on, then the local ward, people's committee whatever, can make you demolish it.    Your then on the hook to PAY for rezoning .  And being a stand alone foreign owner , they'll name their price.

There's a nice rural block I'd love to build on here. But I'm being told two different stories on the zoning.   Who do you believe . I just found out the lawyer doesn't even know mans been to the moon.
It can be an interesting experience.

Then you've got the builders to deal with.   I've owner built houses back in Australia , and that can be frustrating.  But these guys take that to a whole new level😄

Ralph posted on another thread about building costs here also in detail.  Check that out.

Yogi007 :

Besides, why buy when rents so ridiculously cheap.  This is one place where you don't need hooks or baggage.
But hey,....you'll get some really cool neighbours to go with your overpriced dream home here.
I was looking at building here, but the negatives far outweighed the positives
.

:one

I have lived in VN for 11 years now and my advice to you would be just dont do it, not buy land anyway, the chances of it all running smoothly [buying the land and building the house] are pretty much slim to none, and you will be ripped off, obviously not as much if you can hire help, but having family here who can help can work out very expensive.

I am not going to point out all the pitfalls and nightmares that await you as you will hear plenty but as a foreigner can now buy a house and have just his name on the Red Book [no need your wife's name on it as it becomes her's if you die anyway] that's by far your best way. So buy a house with a Red Book have just your name in it, sounds maybe hard and mean but you are a fool if you dont.

charmavietnam :

Buying land is a big headache even for Vietnamese citizens because of so many fraudulent realtors. Be careful before you leap!! Many of them quote some cheap rate per square meter to attract their 'prey'. When you ask more details (normally people ask less details before see the property) you can understand that price is not same and also the property! When they offer property in their advt. it's in Hoc Mon / Cu Chi, HCMC. In fact the real one may be somewhere far in Long An  :)  Their first offer is a one day tour to the property. If you didn't ask more details then you are in their first 'trap'. Normally Vietnamese are too patience in these cases. Never react  :) . They just go and come back or fall for another trap. Make sure the exact location of property, price after registration (double check it's not a shared ownership in which you never get a pink book) value of house if any or actual cost per square meter for new construction,etc. If land only make sure it is not agricultural land if you are building house. If normal land ask clearly that how many square meter is usage area for new construction. I suggest, expats or their Vietnamese family intend to buy property, just try to buy from the real owner even if it's little old house.  Don't waste your time and money unless it's an actual sale deed with pink book and complete possession of the same.
Again, think some more time whether it's necessary to buy property here or not. The money you are going to spent is your blood and sweat, not mine  :)  Good luck!!

Thanks charma, good response!

To give an ex pat perspective; My (Vietnamese) wife and I bought an apartment in HCMC in a newly built block. We can own it for 50 years, after which we (our kids) have to renew the ground lease. So we then bought a house, again new build. The purchase took weeks and weeks  of going to govt offices, tax offices, notary offices, banks etc. The procedure is torturous and fraught with danger all the way.  We bought from a private owner who couldn't afford to repay the bank for the loan they had taken out. We got there in the end but it aint easy. Luckily most of my wifes friends are lawyers and judges so we had some help, With our house came the ownership title of "long term", a Vietnamese legal phrase which we are still trying to clarify.

My wifes father gave us a very nice piece of land in the central highlands, which my wife owns outright and on which we intend to build a villa in due course. Foreigners with Vietnames wives/husbands are wise to have, a. Their name in the house red book and b. A separate agreement with their wives/husbands to the effect that the wife/husband agrees that the ownership is 50/50, that is to say that the value of the foreigners interest is 50%, so if anything unfortunate happens the foreigner has some expectation of getting something back.

eodmatt :
charmavietnam :

Buying land is a big headache even for Vietnamese citizens because of so many fraudulent realtors. Be careful before you leap!! Many of them quote some cheap rate per square meter to attract their 'prey'. When you ask more details (normally people ask less details before see the property) you can understand that price is not same and also the property! When they offer property in their advt. it's in Hoc Mon / Cu Chi, HCMC. In fact the real one may be somewhere far in Long An  :)  Their first offer is a one day tour to the property. If you didn't ask more details then you are in their first 'trap'. Normally Vietnamese are too patience in these cases. Never react  :) . They just go and come back or fall for another trap. Make sure the exact location of property, price after registration (double check it's not a shared ownership in which you never get a pink book) value of house if any or actual cost per square meter for new construction,etc. If land only make sure it is not agricultural land if you are building house. If normal land ask clearly that how many square meter is usage area for new construction. I suggest, expats or their Vietnamese family intend to buy property, just try to buy from the real owner even if it's little old house.  Don't waste your time and money unless it's an actual sale deed with pink book and complete possession of the same.
Again, think some more time whether it's necessary to buy property here or not. The money you are going to spent is your blood and sweat, not mine  :)  Good luck!!

Thanks charma, good response!

To give an ex pat perspective; My (Vietnamese) wife and I bought an apartment in HCMC in a newly built block. We can own it for 50 years, after which we (our kids) have to renew the ground lease. So we then bought a house, again new build. The purchase took weeks and weeks  of going to govt offices, tax offices, notary offices, banks etc. The procedure is torturous and fraught with danger all the way.  We bought from a private owner who couldn't afford to repay the bank for the loan they had taken out. We got there in the end but it aint easy. Luckily most of my wifes friends are lawyers and judges so we had some help, With our house came the ownership title of "long term", a Vietnamese legal phrase which we are still trying to clarify.

My wifes father gave us a very nice piece of land in the central highlands, which my wife owns outright and on which we intend to build a villa in due course. Foreigners with Vietnames wives/husbands are wise to have, a. Their name in the house red book and b. A separate agreement with their wives/husbands to the effect that the wife/husband agrees that the ownership is 50/50, that is to say that the value of the foreigners interest is 50%, so if anything unfortunate happens the foreigner has some expectation of getting something back.

Good read that, you know having read some of the posts I got to thinking many paint Vietnamese women in a bad light, and no doubt some are, certainly around the tourist area of somewhere like Nha Trang where the long term extraction of husbands cash is big business with teams involved in its operation.

But after living here 11 years[and staying single] one thing I have picked up on quite a bit, and that's some of these girls are under enormous pressure from families to get them money, and family members will convince even the most decent of wives to borrow cash from the bank using the Red Book of the house you have paid for as security, I have known 2 guys lose everything because of this. I said in an earlier post there is no need now to have your wife's name in the Red Book but if you do make damn sure that you have that book under your control at all times.

Hi, I am working for Savills Viet Nam. Regardless of your worries about Vietnamese wives will trick to get your property. Actually, there is some source of information said that foreigners who get married with Vietnamese, are able to own property for long term (not extendable 50 years ownership. However, we are still waiting for the Official Circulation of The New Housing Law to cobnsult for my clients.

I have a small piece of land.ít is resident land with the red book . It towards to the farm with full fruit trees and far away ha noi 10km. Someone´s interested in ít. Pls contact me. Many thanks

Hi,

You may want to check these out with regard to the latest news on land ownership. Some new laws was passed on July 1, 2015

hoianhouse.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/foreign_ownership_vietnam.pdf

vietnam-immigration.org.vn/news/view/foreigners-have-over-3-month-visa-can-own-houses-in-vietnam.html

" Vietnam will allow the foreign citizens to buy house for the first time with a simple requirement, they must enter Vietnam legally. The new law is extended the rules that currently apply to apartments, according to the amended Housing Law which take effect on July 1 2015. This allow the Foreigners own any property for a maximum of 50 years and enjoy the same rights to lease transfer or sell the property as Vietnamese citizens.

The law passed with 77.46 percent approval in the National Assembly with some special notes:..."

I am not an authority with this subject but has been keen to explore the option. Please follow link to read more.

Hi

The link doesn't seem to show but below are the news with regard to the law passed in July, 1, 2015

The law passed with 77.46 percent approval in the National Assembly with some special notes:

- Foreign entities who have invested in housing projects in Vietnam, foreign-invested enterprises; branch and representative offices of foreign companies in Vietnam, foreign investment funds; and foreign bank branches will all be entitled to purchase real estate under the law.

- Foreign individuals and entities will only be allowed to buy, receive, or inherit apartments and houses in commercial projects and not in areas that limit or ban foreigners.

- Foreign individuals and entities are able to buy a maximum of 30 percent of apartments in a block and 250 houses in a given ward.

- Individual foreigners may extend their home ownership after 50 years, according to their need. The government provide further details about the extension process in the future.

- Foreign property can be put out to lease for any “purposes that is not banned by law” but must also inform the provincial house management agency before leasing the property.

- Foreign property owners will also be subject to the nation's property taxes.

- Foreign entities can already buy property to house their employees, but they are not able to lease or use it toward any other purpose.

According to Phan Trung Ly, chairman of the National Assembly’s Law Committee, the legislature passed over proposals to tighten home ownership restrictions for foreigners. A majority of voting lawmakers said the open policy will attract more foreign investment without jeopardizing national security.

Foreigners acquiring properties in Vietnam is under strict regulations...When you plan to put down a significant investment, seek help from lawyers in Vietnam (in private, not with your wife/girlfriends...).  Better be safe then sorry.  Cheers, Jenny.

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