Neil McDonough

Neil McDonough's blog on Ajarn.com


Are we living in groundhog day?

And can you take advantage of it?

If the 20th century belonged to Europe and the USA, then perhaps the 21st century can belong to SE Asia and cities like Bangkok, can perform as well as cities like London, Paris and Frankfurt.


Real estate since the coup

Property developers are putting their trust in the new regime.

Surely if there was a sense of fear or worry that the current regime may have a negative impact on the Thai economy, then real estate projects would be halted or at least slowed down


Where's my local shop?

Bangkok truly is a shopper's paradise.

It's little wonder that people are flying in from India, Cambodia, Myanmar (Burma) Laos, Vietnam, Singapore and HK, purely for the shopping. Their cities fall behind Bangkok and simply lack the range of glitzy malls, products, and overall shopping experience found in modern-day Krungthep.


The hidden gardens of Bangkok

You'd be surprised how much green there is out there

Finding peaceful, open spaces outside of Bangkok is easy enough, but tranquility within the central areas of the city is near to impossible, unless of course, you know where to look.


Bangkok's cheap apartments

Are budget studios a good option?

Not only is Bangkok renowned for having the cheapest taxi fares on the planet, but it's perhaps also one of the least expensive capitals in the world for renting centrally located accommodation. So just how much bang do you get for your Baht in 2014?


What's in a name?

'Everything' say property developers

All around us these days, products and services are branded with care and precision. This is not only done to draw attention, but also to stimulate precise feelings within consumers for whatever product or service is being hawked. It's been proven time and time again that clever branding really does produce positive results in businesses.


Possible effects of ASEAN

It can only be good news for the Bangkok property market

For all its faults (and like any big city, Bangkok has many), Bangkok is geographically in probably the best position to take advantage of the AEC. With links by airplane to almost all of the other nine capitals in 3 hours or a lot less, Bangkok is practically a central hub.


Love at first sight?

Looking for a property is like looking for love

Most people have a certain number of criteria they look for in a perfect partner, and these set of criteria can be related (loosely) to the criteria people use when looking for a place to live.


A palace for one

Quality one-bedroom Bangkok condos and apartments to rent

Not that long ago - 6-7 years in fact - it was actually hard to find a quality, luxurious, but well priced one-bedroom condo within walking distance, or even reasonable motorbike ride of a BTS or MRT station.


An unbeatable investment

Ten reasons to invest in Bangkok real estate

Many people emigrate to other countries looking for opportunity in their lives. They see it as a chance to have a better life than back home. Of course it is an adventure as well and perhaps there is a romantic element linked to their decision, but most expats who become 'permanent' residents of Thailand or Bangkok only do it if their lives are improved in the process.


Renting apartments and condos in Bangkok

It's all about deposits

Every year Thailand, and of course Bangkok, become an increasingly popular and attractive place to emigrate to for the first time expat. Attractions include the relaxed way of life, the access to international fare - particularly if you live along the BTS or MRT system in Bangkok and of course the delicious and healthy local food.


Want to be a reality TV star?

When Bangkok property TV becomes a reality

The TV production company are ideally looking for an expat couple (preferably where both parties are foreigners in Thailand).The couple must be already living in Bangkok and have bought or rented a property here already.


The changing face of Bangkok

How property developers are playing their part

Like many SE Asian cities, apart from religious monuments such as temples and a few other buildings, there is a virtual free-for-all on development, and very little in the way of protection and preservation. Does this detract from the city in the form of character and beauty? That of course is a matter open to debate.


Wet, wet, wet

Going door to door and staying dry!

We can at least attempt to escape a number of those rainy season downpours by living as close to the BTS and MRT stations as possible, and in fact some of the condominium developers in Bangkok have gone one stage further and actually linked their buildings to a station


Movie madness

Property choices for movie buffs

If you are interested in living on Sukhumvit like many expats, then there are three main cinema complexes, all with multi-screens and English language films showing every day.


Up the junction

Two of Bangkok's nightmare traffic junctions

The most famous junction in Bangkok for expats is Asoke junction, where Sukhumvit road crosses over Asoke road (which confusingly turns back in Ratchada road once Sukhumvit has been crossed). I'm guessing every expat that reads Ajarn.com has been caught at this junction at one time or another, in the back of a taxi or driving themselves


The plus points and the downsides

The advantages and disadvantages of different types of Bangkok properties

The best way to choose which type of property is suitable for you is to decide which one is best for your own lifestyle and needs. Whatever type of property you are considering, whether it be an apartment, a condominium a townhouse or a detached house there will be many factors that need consideration.


The Venice of the East

How Bangkok's waterways could improve your life no end

Any reader who has lived in Bangkok near a canal for any length of time, will know not only how efficient and inexpensive the system is, but also how unappreciated and unused the system is by expats in general and how they could easily benefit from cheap, reliable and extremely quick transport around Bangkok.


How a foreigner can buy real estate in Thailand

Yes indeed, foreigners can certainly invest in the Thai property market

Foreigners have been buying real estate in Thailand regularly for the last three decades and more and more invest in Thai real estate each year. This would not be possible if foreigners were being consistently ‘cheated' out of their money by the laws of the land.


Is now the time to buy Bangkok real estate?

Why not convert those rental payments into a property investment?

Bangkok could now be a good place for you to invest in property. The main reasons for this are two-fold: Bangkok's two major public transport systems are at last being developed with more professionalism and enthusiasm than ever before, and we are drawing closer to 2015 each and every day!


The market is flooded

How have the floods affected Bangkok's property market?

Tens of thousands of townhouses and detached houses - most no more than three storeys high - have been inundated by up to two metres of flood water. And it's even deeper in some areas!


Myths and misconceptions regarding real estate in Bangkok and Thailand.

Some of the untruths that get banded about concerning Thai real estate

Many of the myths and urban legends addressed in this blog will be ones that we have actually heard from our clients or from other sources within the industry


Pets and Thailand real estate

Is it a good idea to bring your pet with you to live in Thailand?

When you plan to leave home to travel thousands of miles to the other side of the world, it presents a huge emotional strain. There's the strain of leaving family, friends and loved ones - people who you may not see again for months or even years. Some of these loved ones have four legs, tails or even fins. So do you opt to leave them behind or do you bring them with you? It's a big question for some people!


Property possiblities on the BTS Sukhumwit extension

Only a few more months to go until the long-awaited Sukhumwit extension

I'm sure if you live in Bangkok it would not have escaped your notice that the popular BTS system is receiving a long overdue extension in the Eastern part of the city center.


Across the riverbank

Are Krungthonburi and Wongwian Yai the new Silom and Sathorn?

Has the area just over the river, namely Thonburi, become the new Silom and Sathorn since the opening in May 2009 of the new Krungthonburi and Wongwian Yai BTS stations?


Let's play Bangkok monopoly

What would the Bangkok edition of the Monopoly board game look like?

Recently I was asked to play the Thai edition of the game, first produced in 2005, but I was disappointed to discover that the game is not based on Bangkok, but on Thailand, with the likes of Samui, Phuket and Pattaya dotted around the board


Perils of the Thai property market

Some pitfalls to watch out for in terms of after-sales service

There are reputable and quality players in the Thai real estate markets, but there are also many ‘me-too' entrants. Politely and in the nicest possible terms these people can be referred to independent agents or freelancers.


Is Ratchadaphisek the new Sukhumvit?

An area of Bangkok that is rapidly gaining in popularity as a place to live

So what has happened to Ratchada to transform it into this now arguably superior status? Well obviously it has benefitted immensely from the MRT stations and metro line and this has given Ratchada not only a new lease of life, but has encouraged others to come and live in the area.


Buying condos in Bangkok

A brief look at investing in Bangkok property

One teacher I was recently talking to who lives and works in Sukhumvit, has recently bought two studios near On Nut station. He'll probably be able to lease these units out for approximately 12,000 baht each and this will cover the mortgage he obtained in his Thai wife's name


Low cost living in the Sukhumwit area

Where are the good deals in this popular area?

Many expats of all nationalities from Japanese to German, from Indian to Italian, and of course all those in between, flock to Sukhumvit and make it the most popular expat ‘district’ of Bangkok.


Renting apartments in Bangkok: Getting started

Apartment-hunters often have a misguided image of property brokers

Moving to Thailand is difficult - a totally different culture, a totally different alphabet, a totally different language (of course Thai is tonal) and even a different religion. So where do you start?


Accommodation to suit a teacher’s budget

Three good deals on affordable apartment living

A look at suitable low-budget accommodation for teachers in Bangkok, focusing on condos and apartments.


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