Budget for Chiang Mai, Thailand

0

Budgeting for Life in Chiang Mai

Consider settling down in Chiang Mai, where a retired couple can live for as little as $1,055 per month for basic expenses.

We know a single man, an American, who lives on only $200 a month, with half of that for rent. He gets around on a bicycle and eats at noodle stalls–or for free when a temple offers lunch. He makes a sport out of spending as little as possible. We know a Thai American woman who bought an apartment in a small town 15 k.m. from Chiang Mai. She manages on $600 a month Social Security and, as she is Thai and over 60, she has free government health care. But those are special cases, exceptions. You should start with a bigger budget, below.

House and apartment rentals can vary a great deal. We know a couple who rent a place in the countryside 12 kilometers from old town Chiang Mai and pay only $135 for a small home and garden. You will certainly pay more for larger, newer places in town.

Foreigners can own apartments/ condos in Thailand but, unless they go through hoops, not real property. So we show living costs assuming the purchase of an apartment/ condo.

House or Apartment Rental


Rent $400 Can vary greatly
HOA Fees $0 Not usually required of renters in Thailand
Property Taxes $0
Transportation $0 Local buses $.60 per person, taxis average $2,50 per ride
Gas $0
Electricity $50 Average value, depends on air-con
Telephone $15 Cell phone, depending on use
Internet $25
Household Help, fulltime $50 Once or twice a week
Food $123
Entertainment $250 Includes meals away from home
Homeowner’s Insurance $0 If you are in a house, I’d suggest insurance, about $54 monthly
Exchange Rate: $1=35 baht (Jan 09)
TOTAL $913


Apartment Ownership


Rent $0
HOA Fees $75
Property Taxes $0
Transportation $100 Local buses $.60 per person, taxis average $2.50 per ride
Gas $0 Used for hot water and cooking
Electricity $50 Average value, depends on air-con
Telephone $15 Cell phone, depends on use
Internet $25
Household Help, fulltime $50 Once or twice a week
Food $123
Entertainment $250 Includes meals away from home
Homeowner’s Insurance $35
Exchange Rate: $1=35 baht (Jan 09)
TOTAL $723


Owning a Car

Car Registration $20 Based on a $23,000 SUV
Insurance $20 Full coverage on a $23,000 SUV
Maintenance $40
Fuel $100
Car Total $180

If you have a car you’ll largely eliminate the $100 a month budgeted for local transportation.

Costs skyrocket if you want to live in Bangkok , figure you’ll pay double for rent, transportation, eating out and entertainment.

Paul Terhorst
For Live and Invest Overseas

Comments

Share.

About Author

Live And Invest Overseas

Live and Invest Overseas is the world's savviest source for top opportunities to live better, retire in style, invest for profit, do business, and own real estate overseas. Established in 2008, the Live and Invest Overseas' editors and correspondents have more experience researching and reporting on top opportunities for living well, investing for profit, doing business, and owning real estate around the world than anyone else you'll find.