Goodbye foreigners hello local Thai’s

When I first came to Pattaya in 1990 there were no estate agents or brokers as we now them now, there wasn’t a local newspaper, magazine or website. The market was run by Thai’s and most properties were advertised in ‘lawyers office windows’. The first ‘foreign’ estate agent was NT Realty who opened an office on 2nd road near Royal Garden in the early 1990’s.

It was a great location for passing tourists (foot fall), they launched their website in 1998. Many of the successful foreigners who set up the agencies that followed, started their Pattaya real estate careers working for NT. Over the years we saw a huge boom in Real Estate Agents, at one point about 4 years ago there were over 700 businesses selling property one way or another.

So its a great shame to see NT realty have finally closed the doors on the office in Pattaya.

In the last year we have seen several of the biggest foreign agencies leave the market, and many of the small agents have gone too, as the foreign property market has shrunk enormously, now only a few good foreign agents remain with main street offices.

Its no coincidence that these survivors mostly have strong ‘online’ presence and the low over heads that go along with virtual businesses is a factor, as busy foot fall locations are now so expensive.

In the place of the disappearing ‘foreign agents’, we are now seeing the resurgence of ‘Thai’ agents and brokers. In this issue we welcome ZET Estate, to Pattaya, a group of smart young Thai entrepreneurs from Bangkok, that recognize the fact the Pattaya market has shifted back to the Thai local buyers and Indian, Chinese foreign investors.

This is a new era, if you’re a developer adapt, if you’re and agent, adapt, if you’re a seller, find an agent that understands the new market, if you’re a buyer you have a huge choice and should find a bargain.

By Charlie Warner

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