Real Estate

VN needs to simplify Property Laws for Foreigners

Date: 05 December 2018; Type: Legal News; Source: Vietnam News Agency

Hanoi, Dec 5 (VNS/VNA) - Vietnam's real estate market must solve many difficulties to increase the number of foreigners buying property in the country, experts said.

“To promote foreigners’ trading of real estate products on the local market, Vietnam should increase the portion of property products available for foreigners in each project,” said Nguyen Hoai An, director of CBRE Vietnam's Hanoi branch.

“It is necessary to complete legal documents, circulars, procedures and support for foreigners in buying property products in Vietnam,” she said. “The nation needs to complete the process of issuing pink books and certificates of ownership for property belonging to foreigners.”

“Meanwhile, banks need to increase support for foreigners in property transactions,” she said.

Existing projects that want to attract more foreign customers should develop professional customer care processes for foreigners, she said.

Foreign buyers have often faced barriers to buying real estate in Vietnam, including the limitation of the law on the foreign ownership portion of each property project, An said.

“For apartment projects, foreigners can only own up to 30 percent of the apartment volume, while for townhouse projects the portion is not to exceed 10 percent or 250 units,” An said.

According to Nguyen Manh Ha, former head of the construction ministry’s Housing and Market Management Department and deputy chairman of the Vietnam Real Estate Association, Vietnam has many laws, decrees and circulars related to property trading. Foreign buyers often do not know all of the country’s laws.

The State should have a handbook for buyers to provide guidance on all steps and the state agencies implementing those steps, Ha said. That would make it easier for foreign buyers to navigate the property purchasing process.

"Vietnam has a legal framework allowing foreigners to buy and own property in the country," An said. "However, the process has obstacles in the form of the language and laws for implementing legal documents."

"In addition, foreign buyers have also had trouble getting support with money transfers from banks," she said.

"Most projects of local investors have not had customer support teams to help foreign buyers during property transactions, making it hard for foreigners to buy from those projects."

"Moreover, many foreign customers receiving houses or apartments have had problems getting certificates of ownership," she said.

Stephen Wyatt, Country Head of JLL Vietnam, agreed and added that some projects in HCM City reported foreign buyers were interested in their projects but there were no available units for foreigner buyers due to the legal limits.

“The number of foreign buyers has totalled thousands of units, versus a few hundred recorded before the new law was introduced,” said Wyatt. “However, the issuance of pink books continued to be a challenge for foreign buyers.”

Since the law that allows foreigners to purchase property in Vietnam came into effect in 2015, the number of enquiries and transactions from foreign buyers increased significantly, Wyatt said.

JLL recently carried out an international marketing campaign for residential projects in Vietnam and received a considerable amount of interest and feedback from foreign investors from Singapore, Hong Kong, mainland China, the Republic of Korea and Japan, Wyatt said.

“Vietnam has many opportunities for real estate market development,” he said. “Some positive changes have taken place to the legal structure surrounding residential transaction activity, which will lure more foreign developers and investors into the local market, and to Vietnam's law allowing foreign buyers to purchase and own residential property.”

The rights of foreigners over the property are the same as the rights of the locals – the property can be leased out, sold, inherited and used as collateral. In addition, tenure shall be for 50 years and can be renewed for another 50 years.

A safe and stable political situation and economic growth rate are also advantages for the market. Therefore, foreign real estate investors should be aware of Vietnam as a new market for investment, he said.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) is increasing, contributing to surge in number of foreigners living and working in Vietnam. Attention to investment in property from foreign buyers will continue to increase, according to An.

On the market, the supply and quality of products are continuing to increase, bringing more options for buyers, including those buying for investment purposes.

In the near future, foreign buyers will continue to play a role in the market because they are able to buy property at a lower price than in their home countries.

According to CBRE, at projects that were offered by CBRE on the market, the number of foreign buyers in the 2017-18 period more than doubled in comparison with the number of transactions in the 2016-17 period. Many of the projects had sold their full quota of units for foreigners during their first market offering.

The Housing and Market Management Department reported that by 2017 there were 800 foreigners with certificates of ownership for property in Vietnam.

Meanwhile, there are 400,000 foreigners living and working in Vietnam. This number will increase in the future as the country integrates further in the global economy, meaning foreigners’ demand for Vietnamese property will continue to rise.

Notice: The Publishers of Asean LIP acknowledge the permission granted by the relevant official/ original source for the reproduction of the above/ attached materials. You shall not reproduce the above/ attached materials in whole or in part without the prior written consent of the Publishers and/or the original/ official source. Neither the Publishers nor the official/ original source will be liable for any loss, injury, claim, liability, or damage caused directly, indirectly or incidentally to errors in or omissions from the above/ attached materials. The Publishers and the official/ original source also disclaim and exclude all liabilities in respect of anything done or omitted to be done in reliance upon the whole or any part of the above/attached materials. The access to, and the use of, Asean LIP and contents herein are subject to the Terms of Use.

Get ASEAN LAW ALERT

Legal updates by e-mail. It's Free.

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Mobile Application on Labour Market Information Launched

PUTRAJAYA, Apr 23 (Bernama) - Information on Malaysia's labour market is now available at the fingertips with the launch of a new mobile application, Labour Market Information Gateway or LMI Gateway today.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Former Lawyer Pleads not Guilty to CBT Over Client's House Sale Proceeds

KUALA LUMPUR, Apr 23 (Bernama) - A former lawyer pleaded not guilty at the Sessions Court here today to a charge of criminal breach of trust amounting to RM338,000 which was the proceeds from the sale of a house belonging to his client three years ago.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Manila Court orders Arrest of Acierto, Seven Others

MANILA, Apr 23 (PNA) - A Manila court has ordered the arrest of former police official Eduardo Acierto and seven others implicated in the smuggling of shabu shipments inside magnetic lifters last year.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

SC orders Inspection of Court Houses in Quake-Affected Areas

MANILA, Apr 23 (PNA) - Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin on Tuesday ordered an inspection of all court houses in areas affected by the magnitude 6.1 earthquake that hit Luzon on Monday afternoon.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Cybersecurity Challenge should be viewed as an Opportunity - Gobind

CYBERJAYA, Apr 23 (Bernama) - A national innovation ecosystem needs to be developed to transform cybersecurity challenges towards forming new opportunities, ideas and solutions, Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo said today.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Malaysia signs ASEAN Trade in Services Agreement

KUALA LUMPUR, Apr 23 (Bernama) - Malaysia has signed the ASEAN Trade in Services Agreement (ATISA) and the Fourth Protocol to Amend the ASEAN Comprehensive Investment Agreement (ACIA).

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Former Lawyer charged with Criminal Breach of Trust

SEREMBAN, Apr 23 (Bernama) - A former lawyer pleaded not guilty in the Sessions Court here today to criminal breach of trust involving RM198,592.50, nine years ago.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

PCC seeks Own Probe on Luzon Power Outages

MANILA, Apr 22 (PNA) - The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) announced that it will investigate allegations of collusion or abuse of dominance among energy companies that led to the recent series of power outages in Luzon.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Right to Freedom of Religion guaranteed under Federal Constitution

KOTA BELUD, Apr 21 (Bernama) - The right to freedom of religion of every Malaysian is guaranteed under the Federal Constitution, said Sabah Rural Development Minister Datuk Ewon Benedick.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Sabah and Sarawak High Court Registrar's Office to move to Kota Kinabalu

SANDAKAN, Apr 21 (Bernama) -- Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Liew Vui Keong today confirmed that the Office of the Registrar of the Sabah and Sarawak High Court will be relocated from Kuching to Kota Kinabalu.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Government awaits Approval from Malay Rulers on New Chief Justice - Mahathir

KUALA LUMPUR, Apri 19 (Bernama) - The government is awaiting approval from the Malay Rulers for the appointment of a new Chief Justice, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said today.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Double Pay for Workers on Maundy Thursday, Good Friday

MANILA, Apr 17 (PNA) - Workers who will report to work on April 18 and 19 will receive twice their regular daily wages as both days have been declared regular holidays, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said Wednesday.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

Palace suspends Government Work for Holy Week Exodus

MANILA, Apr 17 (PNA) - Malacañang suspended work on Wednesday (April 17), 12 noon onwards, to allow government employees to travel to their respective regions in time for the observance of Maundy Thursday (April 18) and Good Friday (April 19).

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

JBC asks Applicant to comment on Gadon Opposition

MANILA, Apr 16 (PNA) - The Judicial and Bar Council (JBC) has asked an applicant for a vacancy in the Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) to comment on an opposition to her appointment filed last month by senatorial candidate and lawyer, Lorenzo "Larry" Gadon.

Read More

INDUSTRY UPDATES

PCC approves Ayala-PHINMA Energy Deal

MANILA, Apr 15 (PNA) - The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) has approved the acquisition of the majority stake in PHINMA Energy by Ayala Corporation’s power branch, AC Energy.

Read More