Buying Property in Bali

 In our book (Sell Up Pack Up and Take Off) we warn that the 'nominee' system of land ownership (where an Indonesian holds title) is a recipe for big problems if the law against foreign ownership of land was ever enforced. Well, there is a new government in Indonesia and they appear to be doing just that.

Check out the story from Bali Expat Facebook Page

As the law in Indonesia that foreigner is not allowed to own a property in Indonesia, now government said will check the status of the land in Indonesia especially in bali. Government said too many foreigner own property in bali now and they will check it slowly because government want to find the truth about the status of the land.
Government said, if the land is belong to foreigner, government will take the land / property and the land / property will be belong to government later. If the foreigner married with Indonesian people, without preup, they property might be will be belong to their wife / husband ( Indonesian people ) and their wife/ husband has the full right for the property ( means the foreigner / the local's wife/ husband ) can not get anything if they get divorce. This is the planning of government now and they will start it without telling anyone when they will start to check the status, because the government said many foreigner has hotel, restaurant, villa, etc and government don't want foreigner know about this.

Government said, this is to check the property status only and for now they don't impose sanctions to the foreigner who breaks the law ( own property in Indonesia ) but they only takes the property from the foreigner.

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Going to the dentist - Thai Style

There was no choice – I had to replace my six front teeth. They were cracking.  The enamel had long gone and no amount of bleaching could hide the yellowing tone.  I was too embarrassed to smile for photographs.  The dentist in Australia said he would do his best to keep the total cost down to USD$7,800.  It would take weeks of dental visits (and temporary front teeth in the meantime) to complete the whole job of capping the six teeth.  I was resigned to a long and expensive dental saga.

My friend Jay had another idea.  Go to Thailand.  The previous year Jay had been told that he needed several implants.  And although he is the wealthiest friend I have ever had, he opted to have his dental work done in Thailand.  During his misspent youth Jay had lived in London and befriended a young Australian model.  That model, who still looks glamorous decades later, now lives in Bangkok and swears by her dentist.

But how do you make a dental appointment in Bangkok when you are sitting in regional Australia?  No problem, it is all done online.  I filled in the form, emailed it off and had a reply within the hour.  Once the appointment time had been agreed, the receptionist wanted to know the address of my hotel.  A car and driver would pick me up from the hotel and deliver me back after my visit.  This sounded promising – and it was.

A Mercedes with a friendly English speaking driver collected me on time and thirty minutes later I was being offered a cappuccino in a very sophisticated dental surgery.  There were several dentists and orthodontists in the practice, many of them US trained.  My dentist was English speaking, very caring and blessed with a good sense of humour.

The end result – the most pain free dental appointment I have ever had (and that includes teeth polishing).  The six front teeth were capped. They look marvellous.  It took just two appointments and only five days with temporary teeth (which incidentally looked better than my original set).  The cost all up was just over USD$2,350 – less than a third of my ‘rock bottom’ Australian quote.

The dental surgery I attended was Thantakit Dental Center in Petchburi Road.  The website is

Australians spend an estimated $300 million seeking medical and dental treatment abroad.  Of course, not everyone has such an upbeat tale to tell – but my experience was a happy one.  And now I can smile for photographs.