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Phil90

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About Phil90

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  1. Doesn't getting a renewal and transfer clause in a land lease require, essentially, a contract? I read that this is the case because Thai lease law doesn't allow for it. But then you run into more problems because when the owner of the land sells it, the lease transfers but the contracts about the renewal and transfer rights don't. Isn't that true? But if contract law is "worthless" does it apply to those types of contracts too in that your lease renewal and ability to transfer it are questionable even if the owner does not sell the land?
  2. Can't you read? I said I'm not in line for inheritance, he has his own kids. What does making huge errors (even order of magnitude errors), have to do with "feeling guilty"? Whatever his motivation, a man of his education level should be able to express himself clearly, concisely and consistently without making major mistakes in basic math if he is still in a right frame of mind. You are ridiculous.
  3. I see some very trollish replies that sound like they didn't read the whole post. You got it though it sounds like. Of course it's his money and he should spend it as he wants... but... he isn't making sense, he isn't being coherent or consistent, he was making tons of mistakes with his figures (sometimes order of magnitude mistakes), he didn't seek legal advice, he seemed to have no understanding and did no research on how the law applies to protecting his rights and so on. That's the point. Earlier in life he was extremely competent in all such matters. Anyway he has a small pension but not much and the home would probably represent around a third of his net worth although I don't know all the figures as far as net worth. As you rightly pointed out, it's clear it's all her idea. I don't care where the money ends up as long as it's not with the gold digger but it seems to be headed in that direction. He could easily just rent a home without having the risk.
  4. Why are his assets and income relevant in a discussion of trying to prevent him from being robbed of 5M THB? Anyway he has no income and he has some savings, he has enough to buy that house, however bad of an idea it is, but he isn't rich.
  5. One yes, the other doesn't maintain much of a role in his life. Kind of apathetic, disinterested.
  6. I don't have a financial interest here. He has his own kids. Thank you all for your input. Sounds pretty bleak.
  7. I apologize in advance for the length of this post but I feel like I need to give all the background to get good advice. My uncle is currently 74 years old and he's been living in Thailand full time since 2015. He has had worsening memory problems for at least the last 5-10 years but has remained fairly sharp until the last 1-2 years when he's started to become forgetful, careless and to make lots of mistakes. Most recently he makes a lot of mistakes with numbers, things that would have been trivial for him in the past (he has an advanced degree in mathematics and a high IQ). When he first moved to Thailand he thought Thai real estate purchases were a bad idea and preferred to rent. He also insisted on a very spartan 1 bedroom studio because it was cheap. He never wanted to upgrade to a larger nicer place (with a pool or a gym, for example). Simply no interest. The family couldn't even get him to hire a maid. A little more than 1 year ago (late 2016) he met his now "fiance" who is almost 30 years his junior (he may have married her already and the family just doesn't know about it, how could we?). Shortly after meeting her (no more than 3-4 months) in early 2017, the topic of real estate purchase emerged. My uncle was considering a home in the 2M - 2.5M THB range. I was horrified but luckily the topic subsided on its own and they decided to rent together getting a 1 year lease on a home for about 15,000 THB per month - quite a good deal I thought. All seemed to be well until late 2017 when the topic of purchasing a business came up. The specifics seemed bad to me but an offer was made against my advice that thankfully fell through. Around Christmas 2017 / New Years 2018 the idea to purchase three condos to put on airBNB was floated. Again I was horrified. My Uncle's rationale for doing this seemed deeply flawed. He presented spreadsheet analysis, only after my urging that were supposed to demonstrate "how profitable" this would be. They had mistakes and also seemed to contain assumptions that were too optimistic. The projected profits in the best case scenario were minuscule amounts, i.e. "not worth the trouble and risk"! Luckily that topic faded from interest also and no purchase was made (to my knowledge). When I asked about it a month or two later, the answer was kind of vague and non-committal but I decided to let sleeping dogs lie. Now most recently, at the beginning of February 2018 my Uncle wrote me explaining how he wants to buy a home because it's "cheaper" than renting. He originally said he thought he could buy a house so cheaply that he would be able to resell it in 3-5 years at a profit and it would be "much cheaper" than renting. He mentioned he would get a 99 year land lease, fully transferable to his heirs. As I started reading up on Thai real estate law and asking pointed it questions, it became clear to me that he didn't really understand all the ramifications of Thai real estate law, land leases, usufructs, the illegality of "nominee ownership", the difficulty in guaranteeing land lease renewal and transferability. And more. He would always ignore the question when I asked who was providing legal advice, how much they are charging, and how he knows this person is competent and trustworthy. E-mails have been going back and forth for a month now. A new situation is presented usually with a spreadsheet analysis, but the details keep changing. The price range of the home, how long it will be kept, calculations on true total costs, etc. The parameters have ranged from 4.8M THB - 5.8M THB. The time he's planning to keep the home started with 3-5 years, then expanded to "maybe 10" and now it's 15. The changes in the holding period all seem to be attempts to demonstrate how it's "cheaper" than renting. But all of the analysis he provided had significant errors in them (read mistaking $30,000 for $150,000, or estimating that rent inflates by 19% per annum - errors of that magnitude), and neglected many of the true costs of purchasing a home (taxes, legal advice, maintenance, etc.) and any mention of "risks" were always either dismissed or ignored. Sometimes he explains the errors as intentional "99 year land lease is what we use in the states, I know it's 30, I only used that to make it simple", or just dismisses them as not important or relevant, "those are careless errors, they don't matter", "time value of money is irrelevant for me", etc. The latest version that he has "decided" to purchase a home for 5.2M THB. He will solve all the complications with the land lease by simply putting the home and the land in her name. He has not yet obtained any legal advice but he is "sure it's cheap and easy to find" and that there must be a lot of options for "good legal advice for expats". He has put down a non-refundable 200,000 THB on this home. It requires him to complete the deal within 30 days or it will be lost. He has not addressed when he plans to seek legal advice or how he will identify a competent, trustworthy and reasonably priced advisor. Needless to say I expressed my shock, alarm and disapproval to which my uncle responded that he "could not see how I could logically justify my opinion that he should not buy a house" and that I have "failed to justify this opinion with facts or logic". He then referred to all of my objections as "throwing a bunch of s*** against the wall to see what would stick" and that "nothing has stuck that leads to the conclusion that I should not buy a house". He then concludes that buying this home is definitely cheaper than renting. He then asks for the "non-monetary reasons which support my opinion" (I have given him pages worth, many with links to news articles, legal blogs, expat blogs, etc.). He asks "Is there any piece of critical information that I am withholding" that would support my opinion. He then goes on to suggest that if I have nothing else to add that he is "100% aware of all the pertinent facts" and he can "see no reason not to purchase the house at this point." I am speechless and dumbfounded, the very e-mail he was replying to stating all of this had many pertinent facts about real estate purchases in Thailand, better more realistic analysis of the costs, lists of the risks and an explanation that simply putting land free and clear in the name of a girlfirend (or "fiance") is the worst imaginable way to do it. I stated that over and over in at least 5-10 previous e-mails. I am dumbfounded and speechless. What can I do? Does anyone have any advice?
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