Chinese return to Chon Buri market
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Chinese return to Chon Buri market

An aerial view of property in Pattaya in Chon Buri province which has seen a surge in demand since the beginning of the year. 
An aerial view of property in Pattaya in Chon Buri province which has seen a surge in demand since the beginning of the year. 

Chinese buyers have returned to the Chon Buri property market, following the lead of Russians, after the reopening of China's borders earlier this year.

Chanin Vanijwongse, chief executive of property developer Habitat Group, said demand for condos and villas in Chon Buri from Chinese and Russian buyers has been strong since the beginning of the year.

"After the new year, property agents targeting Chinese and Russian buyers have returned as their buyers are coming back," he said. "The most popular units are three-bedroom pool villas priced above 10 million baht."

According to the Real Estate Information Center (REIC), the absorption rate of single detached houses priced 10-15 million baht was the highest in the fourth quarter of 2022 at 8.9%.

The rate for those priced above 20 million baht was 6.1% and the rate for units priced between 15-20 million baht was 4.8%.

Chon Buri was ranked second among provinces with the highest number of condo units transferred to foreign buyers with 3,567 units worth 10.2 billion baht in 2022, following Bangkok.

This represented a 49% increase in unit number and a 74% growth in value from 2021, when 2,398 units worth 5.9 billion baht were transferred.

These figures rebounded from a low of 2,061 units worth 5.3 billion baht in 2020.

Chinese nationals accounted for the largest number of condo transfers each year over the past five years, with 1,207 units worth 3.5 billion baht in 2022, up from 998 units worth 2.1 billion baht in 2021.

The peak period was 2018 and 2019 comprising 2,099 units worth 5.1 billion baht and 2,029 units worth 5.3 billion baht, respectively.

However, the number plummeted to 737 units worth 1.9 billion baht in 2020.

In addition to Chinese, the top 10 nationalities included Russian, American, British, German, French, Australian, Japanese, Swiss and Canadian.

"The growth of the residential market in Chon Buri is similar to that of Phuket and Chiang Mai, as it related to the expansion of the tourism industry in the province," said Vichai Viratkapan, acting director-general of REIC.

Last year Chon Buri posted a surge in tourism revenue, rising from only 300 million baht in 2020 to 19.6 billion baht.

This was a significant recovery from the decline in revenue which plunged from over 220 billion baht in 2019 to 34.5 billion baht in 2020.

Similarly, residential demand had a strong rebound in 2022, with year-on-year growth of 26% in the number of newly sold units, totalling 5,729 units and an increase of 49% in the number of condo units transferred to foreigners at 3,567 units.

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