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      Partnership without a written agreement it's Russian roulette.

Lesliе D. Korvin

Real Estate in Cambodia


More and more people have recently been considering a possibility of buying real estate in Cambodia. Among the advantages of this country is a warm climate, sandy beaches and friendly people. Living in Cambodia also seems compelling because local real estate prices are lower than those in other Asian countries.


Choosing a location

Depending on the purpose of your stay or residence in Cambodia, you can buy property in several cities. For example, having bought a property in the small coastal town of Sihanoukville, you will have access to world-class beaches, that meet all kinds of wishes, to the rich seafood market and comfortable pace of life near the warm sea.

If you plan to buy a house in a big city with the business prospects, the education of children in the elite foreign schools, a wide choice of entertainment, then you perfect choice is the capital of Cambodia - Phnom Penh.

If your priority is Buddhism or culture of an ancient civilization, and you want to live close to some temple, the best option for you will be a place near the town of Siem Reap. By the way, buying a property in this area will help you to improve your language skills, because quite a lot of foreigners live there. Kampot or Kep may also deserve your attention.


Selecting Property

Currently, both residents of Cambodia (Khmer) and foreigners are involved in real estate development in Cambodia.

Significantly, there are two main types of properties offered for sale in Cambodia: houses or townhouses. It is not easy to find an apartment.


Clearance of the property

You as a foreigner cannot acquire ownership of the house. There is a law in Cambodia, stating that foreigners cannot buy and register their ownership of the property on the ground floor and of land. They can buy and register their ownership of the property on the first floor and above it. Thus, you can buy and register the apartment if it is above the ground floor. You should get yourself a translator and a lawyer before accomplishment of the deal in order to avoid any possible language barriers and understand all the legal nuances. You should be prepared that very few Khmers sell their property, as the long-term rent is common in Cambodia. The procedure of registering property requires little or no extra hassle and takes much less time than in Russia. You, as a buyer, seller, and a witness append your fingerprints to the treaty (written in Khmer language) to seal it. Document is registered in the city administration, and then you are given the corresponding entitlements


Other schemes for real estate acquisition

You can buy a property in the following way:


  • Set up a company together with the Cambodian citizen and register company’s ownership of the property. This method of deals accomplishment is quite common. You register 49% ownership of the real estate, and the remaining 51% belong to a citizen of Cambodia. It is better to secure yourself and make a written agreement that ensures that you will be entrusted with the conduct of business.

  • Find a long-term rent (for 69-99 years). You will be given all the documentation. Therefore, a citizen of Cambodia will not be able to sell your property. All aspects of the deal to be included in the contract.

  • Obtain a national passport of Cambodia. This can be done either through a major investment in this country, or after having lived in it for 7 years.

  • Register ownership of the property jointly with husband/wife, which is a Cambodian citizen. Please note one important nuance: if the property is registered on the two spouses, none of them can make deals without the consent of the latter.


Thus, buying a property in Cambodia can add to your life positive emotions. The main thing is a responsible approach to the issue. Remember, regardless of the scheme of registration of the local real estate used, it is important to find a professional and honest lawyer or at least a consulting firm.

The only guarantee of secure lease or acquisition of real estate is knowledge and consideration of all the features of the Cambodian legal rules and regulations, scrupulous adherence to relevant procedures. In most cases, it is risky to tackle these issues on your own. Therefore, it is reasonable to rely in this matter on professionals that have been working on this real estate market for a long time.



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