Purchasing a house in Vietnam (peculiarities)

Hey everyone and thanks in advance for your help! I’m planning to buy a property in Vietnam, hopefully, this year. I’m an EU citizen, my wife is Vietnamese and currently, we live in Paris (if it’s of any importance). We’d really like to move to her native country as it’s much cheaper and more comfortable for my wife to live in…

However, I’d like to clear some things up before starting the whole process just to know where to begin and how things are done in that part of the world. So, can you please help me with the following questions?

Can I even buy property in Vietnam being a foreigner? The info I’ve heard on this matter really confuses me… Some say I can buy a house with no problem, others say only my wife can own a property in VN. I’m kinda lost

If I can own a house, are there any limits/restrictions on how many I can buy, where and under what terms & conditions?

If I ever want to move to another country, can I resell my property?

And maybe you can suggest some solid and reliable law firms that can assist me throughout the whole process?

I know these are some basic questions, but I would really appreciate if you explain them to me personally and in one particular topic. Many thanks!
Answers: 2

Hello, Edmund! Fortunately, I am a lawyer working and residing in Vietnam. I have assisted many foreigners throughout the whole buying and selling process and I’ve bought a property myself, so I’m sort of experienced in this field.

For the 1st question, yes you are allowed to buy and own property in Vietnam even being a foreigner. However, you can purchase only from another foreigner which is a completely different market. Your wife though, being a Vietnamese, can buy a house from a native VN citizen.

As for the limitations, actually, there’s one worth pointing out: you can buy only project-based housing, that is you can purchase only an apartment or villa based on a development project. It’s a restriction for foreign residents, so take this one into consideration when choosing your property.

Hiring a lawyer is a great idea indeed, but to choose one you better ask your real estate agent for help as there’re many good reliable law firms around, despite the common opinion that everyone here is going to cheat on you. A professional lawyer will help you to check all the documentation of the developer to make sure the property has all necessary papers and is being built by the law. Secondly, a lawyer will make sure your sale and purchase & deposit agreements are valid and created in accordance with the law. And last but not least, your lawyer is the best person to negotiate with the developer since he’s aware of all traps and pitfalls that may occur.

And for the last question, yes you can resell your property, but there’s a restriction to foreigners’ property market only. You cannot sell it to a native VN citizen. As I’ve already pointed out, there’re two separated markets for foreign residents and Vietnamese people.

Good luck!
Hey! I’m also in the process of buying a flat and that’s what I’ve learned so far:
Foreigners can only purchase either from another foreign citizen if we speak about a second-hand housing or a project developer directly so that the property isn’t delivered yet.

As for the agents, some of them offered us an opportunity to buy from a native citizen, since they know some people who may allow that. But as it’s against the law, we preferred some confidence over shady profit. So we’re buying directly from a project developer. Hope it helped!
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