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Victims of the Ace Condo scandal gather to meet Phuket's Governor

Patong's Ace Condo Buyers Take Protest to Phuket Governor

Wednesday, May 6, 2015
PHUKET: Expats who make up about 70 percent of the ''owners'' of a Phuket condominium development that has yet to take shape turned out to join a protest today.

The 30 protesters went to Phuket Provincial Hall, hoping to see Governor Nisit Jansomwong, who told a similar group 10 days ago that he would talk to the owners of the Ace Condominium project in Patong and get back in 10 days.

The protesters are out of pocket by many millions of baht Governor Nisit heads the Phuket Consumer Protection board.

Expats and locals who bought into the off-the-plan condominium project opposite Patong Hospital have yet to see their condos, which were due for completion last month.

A cross-section of investors and people buying a place to live poured money into the 196-unit project, which had two phases.

Tonny Gao, 42, from China, said he and a friend invested four million baht. Didier et Nadine Giesen said that he had used his retirement funds to buy a unit.

Australian Paul Schmierer said that he had invested 1.152 million baht.

''We thought it was good value because of the location, in the heart of Patong,'' he said. ''Now most of us would just be happy to get our money back.''

It is believed the reason why the condos never took shape is that the two partners behind the plan fell out.

Laws have been tightened to protect consumers but there's a glut of condos on Phuket at present, so developers hoping to derive income from quick sales are in some cases struggling.

Authorities from Kathu district, which oversees Patong, plan to check the accounts of the Patong Centre, the company backing Ace.

Meanwhile, protesters say they will target Bangkok authorities later this week to try to achieve a quick resolution.

The present condo glut also means that apart from condos in secluded or desirable locations, people who bought condos for investment may not see any appreciation until the glut becomes a shortage.

Comments

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Buyers, be a bit patient, Governor promised you to talk/inform himself with the owners of the Patong Ace project. Governor will do so.

Seems buyers can not contact themselves the owners of Patong Ace building project.

To those who would be happy now just to get their money back I would say: Sorry, in Thailand there is not such thing as just getting your money back. You probably have to make it a Court case, At the end you spent more in legal fees and costs than the amount of your deposit. ( Unless the Governor can make a break through).

Posted by Kurt on May 6, 2015 13:52

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"We thought it was good value because of the location, in the heart of Patong," he said.

That's the last place on Phuket I would want to live.

Posted by Smithy on May 6, 2015 18:59

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Smithy, it is obviously not for a place to live but for holiday rentals, tourists do like to stay in the centre.

Posted by coxo on May 7, 2015 08:59

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Victims of the Ace Condo scandal still have some power. Some expat and all local buyers signed buying contracts 'freehold' and paid instalment. That means they have a claim on the land of the building project. The thai law can help these buyers. As long as the freehold buyers not get back their money they can block through Court any futher other activity or other use of that piece of land. In other words, the developer has there a worthless piece of land, can do nothing with it without future Court Clearance. Simple as it is.

Posted by Kurt on May 7, 2015 10:32

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Kurt,
That is if the developer owns the land unencumbered and the land has not been used as security for any mortgage. If so, victims can expect only the crumbs.

Posted by Manowar on May 7, 2015 12:19

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@ Manowar. No, that is not correct. Paid a sum of money for freehold ( including land) obligated both parties.
Who ever as a third party behind the seller is involved is not important. I bought freehold, I signed, seller signed, I paid deposit, seller has to deliver. Part of the land is mine ( freehold) If not, I can block you to do anything else with the land!! You can not scam and sell the land 3 times and not deliver, not even in Thailand.
You build, or give me back my deposit ( + interest)

Posted by Kurt on May 7, 2015 15:57

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Kurt , seen this for 20 years , whatever YOu think , did you see the chanot....? If it's collateral at the bank they are served the first , whatever You take for reality . It's the old gamble trick and yes as a off plan buyer you must know the pitfalls ..... If not don't gamble.

Posted by Phuket on May 7, 2015 17:52

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I thought condominiums could not be freehold and were limited to 99 yr lease for Thais and foreigners

Posted by Michael on May 7, 2015 18:21

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Kurt,
Inless you are registered on the land title, have lodged a Caveat on the title to protect your interest or have a legally binding document recognised and enforceable by a court which guarantees you as a preferential creditor, you are not in any position of strength.
Unfortunately, the person behind the seller is not the third party, he is the first. You or your agreement is a third party agreement.

Posted by Manowar on May 7, 2015 19:17

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Kurt,
If the purchase of the land was financed and a mortgage is registered on the title of the land, the mortgagee has full rights until this money has been repaid.
Your condo purchase contract is with the developer and you have the right of claim for non performance of contract against the developer but you don't have any claim against the mortgagee who can take possession and sell the site if he believes there is, at any time an unacceptable risk in his position as the financer

Posted by Manowar on May 7, 2015 19:34

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One only needs to see how close the building is to the boundary line to see something is not right. I only ever took one client there.

Posted by Sean on May 7, 2015 21:46

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Too many condos right now. Mostly with unsold units. 193 are a lot. Whoever invests money in such big project, has to keep in mind high possibilities of dire consequences. Better to buy from finished projects with units ready to be sold.

Posted by dikky on May 9, 2015 07:58

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ME AND MY WIFE HAVE INVESTED IN TWO UNITS IN ACE 1



MRS &MR ANAND .

Posted by vineet anand on May 9, 2015 13:55

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Vineet,
Invested or contributed by way of donation?

Posted by Manowar on May 9, 2015 14:17

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.."believed the reason the condos never took shape is that the 2 partners behind the plan fell out?"
If that is the case than these 2 partners should have stopped to accept installment payments of buyers.
Mostly when buyer and seller sign a contract than the installments are linked on stages according the progress of construction/building.

Posted by Kurt on May 12, 2015 09:37


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