TOPIC ASIA MAGAZINE

No track record NO GO

Have they got a track record?

Developers come in all shapes and sizes and can be either local or international, big or small. Most will be based in the country where they are developing property. Simply put, property developers purchase land then draw up plans as to how they are going to develop it to maximise their profits. They then market their projects to potential buyers. Neither of this matters much except their track record.

Track record is important…Do due diligence before buying.

When it comes to choosing the right development you have to look at who the developer is and their track record. Seek to answer the following questions:

1. If the developer is foreign in that country, has he done a major development and completed it, like the one you are considering, in a foreign country before?

2. Is the developer cash rich or heavily leveraged with large bank loans?

3. Has he got the money to complete the project without selling any of the properties or does he have to sell a certain amount beforehand?

4. Is he familiar with the labour laws and practices in that country?

5. Which construction company is he going to use and have they done construction in that country before?

6. Is he using a renowned firm of architects?

All of this might seem unnecessary, but it may make the difference between the development you have chosen being finished in a way you had expected and on time, or not at all.

With regard to finishing on time, do not expect the construction of your villa to finish on the date the developer tells you. There are always delays.

The developer is not intentionally trying to pull the wool over your eyes. Delays do happen for one reason or another, such as a delay in the supply chain of materials or some of the workforce not returning to work after a major public holiday, also unexpected weather conditions can affect progress.

Obviously, the developer tries to plan for all of this, but an unexpected event, such as the rainy season coming early before the construction of the roofs are finished, can cause big disruptions and delays.

Try to be patient and always ask to be informed of the progress. This is important because all developers require stage payments throughout the construction and you need to know when the next payment is due so you can factor this into your budget plans.

Changes

I know developers will not like me saying this, but changes to the design of your villa are inevitable for reasons I mentioned earlier in buying off-plan. As long as the changes are small there is no need for concern. Where changes are most likely are in the interior finish of your villa.

It is important to do due diligence on the developer before committing yourself to buy into his development. Look at his website and see what other developments he has done before. If it is possible visit the site and check out the surrounding area. Ask estate agents in the area if they know anything about the developer and try and find out as much as you can about his activities.

Although rumours are just that, rumours, if you hear bad things about the developer you should be suspicious. It could be jealously amongst other developers in the area, but it is worth checking and you should make further enquiries where possible.

Always try to pick a developer who has a track record in the country where you intend purchasing your villa. For example, Raimon Land. They are one of the biggest developers in Thailand and have developed many high-end properties in Bangkok and the resorts.