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How Does A Farang Make Money- Isaan


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funny u all should mention but was talking witht he guys here along the lines of 'what if...' i.e. what if the kibbutz falls apart etc etc and i will be old with no one to support me... so two guys offerred land to rent, build a small thai style house, and do 'guest house'... i'll drag in all the israelis looking for cheap travel.... wont u all love me then 55555555....

one area near nong khai, the other near udon thani areas....i tell u all what...

u build the house... i'll find the israelis, u give me commission, and u deal with the tourists at your end... i'll  deal with the flak when they come back home to gripe and complain (they always always do )...

just when i was getting excited about an idea.... havnt tourists discoverd issan yet?

I reckon that if you don't have the money or pension to stay here you should not be here. 8 years ago there were only a couple of farang bars in Udon. Harry's', Erwyn's and TG's. Now there are about 20 farang bars. This is because there have been too many farangs coming on holiday and thinking that a bar is the answere to thier financial problems. In Nong Khai there was at the last count, about 26 bars. Again farangs coming to town and thinking they can scratch a living by opening a bar. In most cases it's a shack. Most of these bars whether it be in Udon or Nong Khai are frequented by thier rivals, who take alternate nights off to go and spy on other bars. About 1% of farangs make it with bars. If they are truthful they will admit it. Look at the amount who have packed in and went home,it's too many to remember. Many young guys come here and try to settle with thier "two week" holiday t'luck when they should be back in thier own country paying into a pension for thier retirement years. (The small head rules)

I have said this before and many of the older residents have heard it also. There is only one way to leave Thailand with a small fortune. The answere is to come here with a BIG fortune. If there was a fortune to be made in Thailand it would be made by a Thai.

I bet there is a bit of slagging about this. Be truthful before you reply.

]

OK I am not slagging you off! But yes you can make money (Legally) I came here 3 years ago, I was skint. but only because I was saved from England’s drug culture, please let me explain. all my life I never had money, I sold my company to yahoo, my brother came to the UK and brought me to Thailand, why. Because the culture in the UK, and my inability to say no destroyed what I had.

The vultures moved in and took nearly everything I had, now I am in Thailand, and yes you can earn money but it is hard work for a farang, 10 times harder then a Thai!! but now I have a computer business aimed at farangs, I have now just got a small estate 14 kilometer from UdonThani, it has a swimming pool, 2 rooms, a small apartment, Bar, Restaurant. and 3 more rooms, I am booked up until near the end of August, and this is low season!. Please everybody keep in mind, if you need to earn money in Thailand you can, but you must work for it.

Purdy

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13 million Baht for seven guestrooms.Thats five star prices.If it's not a going concern then you could divide the land into three but that would be Four and a half million Baht for two thirds of a rai.

You are right, its nuts.

I know two Aussies who with a 3rd partner bought a nice 9-room GH last year in Jomtien for about 1.25 million. Around the corner from a nice beach, minutes from Pattaya but much nicer.

Their best wheeze was to take the smallest room and rent it as a ST room at 250 a pop. Poorest room in the place and it brings in 1000+ baht a day!

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(From Field of Dreams), ...... build it and they will come ...

and offer them something to do other than taking pics of water buffalo,

maybe eco-hikes, cultural tours,...

Some people would go I think if for no other reason than to say they've been there, h..ll I'll even visit, I'm assuming the facility will have a bar ... :o

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Just a simple question from a lowly carpenter with a small pot of gold and without a rich father. Is a guesthouse feasible in an Isaan village? Any other options?

I'm not sure if it is a simple question? simple questions ten to have simple answers and i dont think there is one in this case :o

Given the circumstances you mention I would put that small pot of gold in an offshore account at 6%. If the amount is enough to give you 5000 baht a month then you have enough to survive in Isaan. the locals can do it, so can a farang.

Forget about the guesthouse, it's a cute idea but destined to see you with empty pockets. Best case is to stick to what you know, as a carpenter you have a craft.

The key to making money in Isaan is selling a service or a skill to another farang, do everything you can to network yourself amongst farangs, there's not a single house in Thailand that does not have warped door's, termite damaged woodwork. windows that are hanging off hinges. Farangs will pay a small premium to get the job done right first time. There are plenty of raw materials, beautiful teak wood is available, what about crafting some designer coffee tables? exterior decking, I live in Khon Kaen and i wanted to buy some nice darkwood furniture all i could find was garbage from Index so thats what i bought. I would happily have given the 100,000 baht for some unique hand made stuff. I got MDF! maybe you would only make a small amount of money to start with, but compared to the guesthouse that will never earn a single penny profit, you'd be on your way!

Well thats my 50 satang spent. good luck anyway!!!

Richard

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Just a simple question from a lowly carpenter with a small pot of gold and without a rich father. Is a guesthouse feasible in an Isaan village? Any other options?

I'm not sure if it is a simple question? simple questions ten to have simple answers and i dont think there is one in this case :o

Given the circumstances you mention I would put that small pot of gold in an offshore account at 6%. If the amount is enough to give you 5000 baht a month then you have enough to survive in Isaan. the locals can do it, so can a farang.

Forget about the guesthouse, it's a cute idea but destined to see you with empty pockets. Best case is to stick to what you know, as a carpenter you have a craft.

The key to making money in Isaan is selling a service or a skill to another farang, do everything you can to network yourself amongst farangs, there's not a single house in Thailand that does not have warped door's, termite damaged woodwork. windows that are hanging off hinges. Farangs will pay a small premium to get the job done right first time. There are plenty of raw materials, beautiful teak wood is available, what about crafting some designer coffee tables? exterior decking, I live in Khon Kaen and i wanted to buy some nice darkwood furniture all i could find was garbage from Index so thats what i bought. I would happily have given the 100,000 baht for some unique hand made stuff. I got MDF! maybe you would only make a small amount of money to start with, but compared to the guesthouse that will never earn a single penny profit, you'd be on your way!

Well thats my 50 satang spent. good luck anyway!!!

Richard

Thank`s Richard, at least you are telling it like it is and, realistically, you are not saying anything that I did not allready know. Although I live in hope of a rare gem of knowledge that may be of some help.

I almost dropped everything to rush up there and start making wooden cows as some bright spark suggested but I just don`t think I could get the uders ( teet things ) quite right.

Does MDF actully last up there?

All the best.

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Thank`s Richard, at least you are telling it like it is and, realistically, you are not saying anything that I did not allready know. Although I live in hope of a rare gem of knowledge that may be of some help.

I almost dropped everything to rush up there and start making wooden cows as some bright spark suggested but I just don`t think I could get the uders ( teet things ) quite right.

Does MDF actully last up there?

All the best.

I doubt it! MDF is a light snack considering that termites can eat concrete if they are hungry enough!

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Just a simple question from a lowly carpenter with a small pot of gold and without a rich father. Is a guesthouse feasible in an Isaan village? Any other options?

I'm not sure if it is a simple question? simple questions ten to have simple answers and i dont think there is one in this case :o

Given the circumstances you mention I would put that small pot of gold in an offshore account at 6%. If the amount is enough to give you 5000 baht a month then you have enough to survive in Isaan. the locals can do it, so can a farang.

Forget about the guesthouse, it's a cute idea but destined to see you with empty pockets. Best case is to stick to what you know, as a carpenter you have a craft.

The key to making money in Isaan is selling a service or a skill to another farang, do everything you can to network yourself amongst farangs, there's not a single house in Thailand that does not have warped door's, termite damaged woodwork. windows that are hanging off hinges. Farangs will pay a small premium to get the job done right first time. There are plenty of raw materials, beautiful teak wood is available, what about crafting some designer coffee tables? exterior decking, I live in Khon Kaen and i wanted to buy some nice darkwood furniture all i could find was garbage from Index so thats what i bought. I would happily have given the 100,000 baht for some unique hand made stuff. I got MDF! maybe you would only make a small amount of money to start with, but compared to the guesthouse that will never earn a single penny profit, you'd be on your way!

Well thats my 50 satang spent. good luck anyway!!!

Richard

Thank`s Richard, at least you are telling it like it is and, realistically, you are not saying anything that I did not allready know. Although I live in hope of a rare gem of knowledge that may be of some help.

I almost dropped everything to rush up there and start making wooden cows as some bright spark suggested but I just don`t think I could get the uders ( teet things ) quite right.

Does MDF actully last up there?

All the best.

Richard is definetly right farrang selling to farrang if you want anything close to a farrang living. I really believe the cattle business dealing wiht the highend quality beef would do allright, but you got three years of putting money out before your going to see a return, But there are stilll many many things that can go wrong.

I have one friend that is involved in fishnet manufactoring and markets all over the world, lives here in Thailand, obviously a speciality field. But he knows the nitch and knows how to fill it. There are probably many ways to make money, but the majority everyday things such as guest house's and bars are all over the place.

Going into business anywhere is a major risk even more so when you are not famaliar with the country you are living in.

Have you established what income you have to have to live here? I think that is usually underestimated by people when they come here. I hear of many who live well on 40 K But personally wihth the lifestyle I want it doesn't come close. But each person needs to know what is going to make them happy. If living on the farm, eating nothing but Thai food, not having aircon,not having english T.V., not having a the interenet or phone, You can live for much less. Not for me but it may well be within the perfect dream for others.

Our housekeeper has two daughters one of which is trade school at the moment her only source of income is 1400 a week she gets from us and she makes it OK.

If you could do that, you could teach english and get by and have extra left.

So it all depends on how you want to live

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Making some small money from photography....although you could do that from anywhere really.

However, Thailand is fairly photogenic....regarded as colourful and exotic....if you live in (say) Birmingham (AL or UK)

I had a request for a picture of "strange food", so a trip to NongKai market fixed that!! I did not sell it though :o

See http://photomoney.blogspot.com/ ....maybe some ideas

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There are two members here who are building a geust-house near the border in Surin.

The aim of the place is for Visa-runners and Eco types.

I, know their business plan is based on 6 guests a month, from memory at 800 baht a night including two cooked meals a day.

The purpose is to get her family into a few baht.

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I guess that Lampard10 is incommunicado right now..... :D

I am sure he will have something to say soon..... :o

Just read that bit now. We have another couple opening here soon, but if you read on, I fully endorse someone opening another establishment here. Especcially if it's somewhere my customers can stay :D

And vegamite look in http://www.farangconnection.awebspace.com

A bit further down the Pike (halfway beyween Khorat and Khon Kaen) is

Lamai Homestay and Guesthouse.

Uk/Thai ran and it kinda makes sense if you own a home anyways, have extra room and don't mind company dropping in from time to time. A village homestay won't be a cash cow of course but it might break up the routine at least.

As you point out Lamp, more and more folks are visiting Isaan all the time and this pilgrimage will just increase with punters subsequent encounters at various beaches and Bkk... :D :D

Edit/sp

Edited by baht&sold
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There is a man that has built a small bungalow complex with a pool and bar in Buriram at Bangruad, think it cost him a fair amount of money particularly the pool believe he paid about 2 million baht for that. Not sure how he is doing with it, not sure he will make his money back but guess he will have an intrest and an income form it. Anybody been there or know how he is doing ????

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funny u all should mention but was talking witht he guys here along the lines of 'what if...' i.e. what if the kibbutz falls apart etc etc and i will be old with no one to support me... so two guys offerred land to rent, build a small thai style house, and do 'guest house'... i'll drag in all the israelis looking for cheap travel.... wont u all love me then 55555555....

one area near nong khai, the other near udon thani areas....i tell u all what...

u build the house... i'll find the israelis, u give me commission, and u deal with the tourists at your end... i'll  deal with the flak when they come back home to gripe and complain (they always always do )...

just when i was getting excited about an idea.... havnt tourists discoverd issan yet?

I reckon that if you don't have the money or pension to stay here you should not be here. 8 years ago there were only a couple of farang bars in Udon. Harry's', Erwyn's and TG's. Now there are about 20 farang bars. This is because there have been too many farangs coming on holiday and thinking that a bar is the answere to thier financial problems. In Nong Khai there was at the last count, about 26 bars. Again farangs coming to town and thinking they can scratch a living by opening a bar. In most cases it's a shack. Most of these bars whether it be in Udon or Nong Khai are frequented by thier rivals, who take alternate nights off to go and spy on other bars. About 1% of farangs make it with bars. If they are truthful they will admit it. Look at the amount who have packed in and went home,it's too many to remember. Many young guys come here and try to settle with thier "two week" holiday t'luck when they should be back in thier own country paying into a pension for thier retirement years. (The small head rules)

I have said this before and many of the older residents have heard it also. There is only one way to leave Thailand with a small fortune. The answere is to come here with a BIG fortune. If there was a fortune to be made in Thailand it would be made by a Thai.

I bet there is a bit of slagging about this. Be truthful before you reply.

Can't slag you bloke! I will agree,

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90% of backpackers are just going to follow the trail. If they want somewhere more remote than Chiang Rai they're gonna go to Laos rather than Isaan. Shame really cos all they need to do is get on a motorbike and look around any province to find Unseen Thailand.

Some might venture North East but not enough to ram a guesthouse. Guesthouses can struggle in the busiest of places.

But don't knock the goats. I have some Thai friends in Pichit who have gone mad for goat's milk. They hate cow's milk and they always say how it's gonna make me fat but goat's milk is 'healthy' apparantly. And the Buddha used to enjoy a drop.

Tastes the same to me... some excellent marketing going on somewhere.

Edited by DrBooze
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90% of backpackers are just going to follow the trail.  If they want somewhere more remote than Chiang Rai they're gonna go to Laos rather than Isaan.  Shame really cos all they need to do is get on a motorbike and look around any province to find Unseen Thailand.

Some might venture North East but not enough to ram a guesthouse.  Guesthouses can struggle in the busiest of places.

Now I think more backpackers are crossing to southern Laos via Chong Mek, so this makes potential for a guesthouse on the Ubon - Phibun - Chong Mek trail.

Was thinking of maybe doing that, not so much for income but to keep wifey busy and to ensure a reasonable flow of new faces to chat over a cold Leo with.

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Saw a couple of grotty backpackers heading out towards the 99 Baht hotel in Nong Khai yesterday.Apart from that just the usual ex pat crowd.Not many tourists even in the capital to make money from.

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  • 1 month later...
Just a simple question from a lowly carpenter with a small pot of gold and without a rich father. Is a guesthouse feasible in an Isaan village? Any other options?

I will say a difficult quest to achieve sucessfully. If you are after earning an income in thailand then overseas income (via investments) to support your endevours is perhaps wiser. The outlay and risk is not worth it. People who are falangs coming to issan villages tend to be the bargirls 'meal-ticket' so to speak and will stay in her place, the back-packers are few and far between and if you're miles from the main road you'll probably be the only farang in the village. Now I don't want to upset your personal plans but it sounds similar to a crazy dutch mans enterprise i knew. He was the sugar daddy of bangkok, partying, shagging, living the high life and splashing the cash!

He settle down with a decent enough BG and plans (and continues to plan!) on retiring to to a small village where his wife lives. He is zealously convinced that falangs will soon tire of the beaches, cities and night-life and move in-land. To that end he has started construction of small concrete rooms over a mile away from the village. He has spent over 2.5 million baht on construction and materials(I personally think, and said that he's being ripped off!) and the rooms are still unfinished! I asked him how much he was going to charge and he believes 1000 baht a night is being generous! I soon gave him my brutal opinion on that one!

The land is highland with no rice crops only corn is the major food crop! The village is dusty and arid too. There are no single women (as they are working in the cities!!)

He brings his friends from his hometown in holland to stay in the village on pretence of staying for free but hands them the bill after they arrive at the airport!

I tell him to carry out marketting in the cities etc but to no avail, he believes the 'backpacker' network will 'find' his village! They must be bloody good mind readers!

An example of how not to do it! If you want to build the guesthouse and keep it as a hobby then go ahead but earning a revenue and fulfilling the legalise paperwork that goes with it will be a challenge.

Getting business will need co-operation from various other tourist geared locations. Marketing and media are a big must. Internet advertising on Back-packer Websites and bars etc.

Overall if there is no beach, no city and no nightlife nearby you've got no chance of getting a good customer base.

As a final note I personally know 5 falangs who have tried like desperate fools to make money on the guesthouse scene all bar one have failed. Issan is so cheap but poor, most folk there (Taxi drivers, Bar Girls) move to the city to earn the money and save their money when in the villages! As the clock said to Dick Whittington' Turn again my friend...'

Edited by JimsKnight
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