Ho Chi Minh real estate market

Buying a property in Ho Chi Minh City: A complete guide for Expats

Since they have opened up their markets in 2015, Vietnam has seen everyone from corporations, expats, and tourists wanting to take advantage of the opportunities in this exploding market. With project development happening in major cities and tourist destinations there are plenty of options for you to purchase homes for sale in Vietnam.

Of those major destinations, by far the most popular city for foreigners to buy real estate is in Ho Chi Minh City (sometimes referred to as Ho Chi Minh or Saigon). As the second fastest growing city in the world, it’s no wonder why it has become such a popular destination for investment. This guide will take a look at property for sale in Ho Chi Minh City and the requirements you need aware of when purchasing property as a foreigner.

Can Foreigners Buy Property in Vietnam?

In 2015, the Vietnamese Government passed the Law on Residential Housing. The passage of this law made it easier for foreigners to buy property in Vietnam. Previously, the restrictions with the number of properties foreigners could purchase was set to one have now been lifted under the new law. Allowing for an influx of foreign investment into the market.

Below, is a summary of the most important information regarding the new law:

  • Properties can be purchased by foreigners by simply possessing a tourist visa
  • There’s no longer a cap to the number of properties you can buy
  • Foreigners are only allowed to purchase a maximum of 30% of the units in condominiums and cannot own more than 10% of the properties in a landed project
  • Foreigners, now, can buy houses, but only 250 of the houses in a given ward (division).
  • The leasehold period is still 50 years but can be renewed
  • If you have a Vietnamese spouse, you can get a freehold tenure

Ho Chi Minh property market

Real Estate Prices in Ho Chi Minh City

Compared to other real estate prices in Asia, Ho Chi Minh City offers comparatively prices and is only outperformed by Cambodia (Phnom Penh) and Indonesia (Jakarta).

Property prices average at USD 2,269 per square meter in the central areas, while property in suburban areas averages at USD 1,083 per square meter.

The Best Areas to Buy Property in Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City is divided into a number of districts (District 1, District 2, etc.). A few districts have specific names, like Bin Tanh, but most are referred to by their district number.

Let’s take a look at some of the more interesting places to purchase property.

District 1

District 1 is the most central district and you’ll notice plenty of foreigners and expats living here. It is home to the financial center and one of the most expensive places to purchase an apartment.

There are plenty of attractions in this district such as the Notre-Dame Basilica, the Old Post Office, the Theatre, the Bitexco Financial Tower, and Ho Chi Minh City Hall.

Prices are expensive in this city but with its central location, you can always expect great price appreciation in the long term.

District 2

District 2 is one of the most popular areas for many Korean and Western expats. It has a high-end and family-friendly feel to it. It is home to many international schools, including the British school, and lots of expats hang around in this area.

Previously being one of the poorest areas in Ho Chi Minh City, District 2 is in the process of being heavily developed with new infrastructure, schools, and hospitals. New condo projects are being built, at the same time, you see bars and restaurants are popping up here and there.

District 3

While District 1 hosts many of the tourist attractions, lots of foreigners prefer to stay in District 3. This includes a diverse array of people from young people, expats, and families, who desire to live in a more “bustling” area of the city.

District 2 is more low-rise with many beautiful villas, serviced apartments, embassies, and malls, in District 3 you’ll be sure to find colonial French style properties, coffee shops, and bars.

The district is most famous for travelers and younger people but has a generally lower standard compared to District 1 and 2. You’ll also find many locals living here.

District 5

District 5 is located Southwest of District 1 and 3. It hosts many of the Chinese people. If you want to enjoy Chinese food, live close to the temples, and buy a more affordable apartment, you might better look at District 5. It is more affordable compared to District 1 and 2 but is still fairly central.

District 7

Lots of expats choose to live in District 7 to escape the congested areas of central Ho Chi Minh City.

This district has lots of golf courses, Western restaurants, and bigger, greener areas. This area might suit you better if you have a family and plan to reside in Ho Chi Minh for a longer period of time.

You can find properties here that are cheaper when compared to District 1 here, but they will potentially have higher capital appreciations over the years. Like District 2, District 7 is expected to increase in popularity as it is foreign friendly and development continues to increase.

Ho Chi Minh property for sale

Real Estate Agents and Listing Websites in Ho Chi Minh City

Before you engage in the real estate market, it is extremely important that you find an experienced agent. Often foreigners are only allowed to bu new and off-plan projects, having an experienced agent makes this buying process easier and less of a headache.

Here is a list of some of the biggest real estate agents and listing companies in Ho Chi Minh City:

  • FazWaz
  • Tranio
  • Colliers
  • Visiup
  • Batdongsan
  • VIProperty
  • Savills