Understanding Thai House Registration: Blue vs. Yellow Tabien Baan

Navigating any new country, especially if you seek to remain there permanently, involves familiarising yourself with a variety of cumbersome administrative procedures.

In Thailand for example, the house registration system (aka “Tabien Baan”), plays a crucial role in establishing residency – but often leaves foreigners feeling overwhelmed and confused.

In this blog post, we’re going to outline everything you need to know about the world of Thai house registration, explaining the key differences between the Blue Tabien Baan (Thor Ror 14) and the Yellow Tabien Baan (Thor Ror 13), in order to help you best determine which one applies to you and your unique situation.

If you have no idea where to begin and feel a little out of your depth, read on and we’ll share some valuable insights with you…

What is a house registration book in Thailand?

The Tabien Baan is an official document issued by the Thai government that registers a person’s residence at a specific address. It serves as a vital piece of documentation, similar to a residency permit, and is often required for specific purposes in Thailand, such as registering for a Thai bank account, obtaining a driver’s licence, or applying for various government services.

Types of Thai House Registration Books

Thailand utilises two main types of house registration books: The Blue and the Yellow book. Understanding the purpose and eligibility for each type is crucial.

  • Blue House Book Thailand (Thor Ror 14): This is the most common type of house registration book, primarily issued to Thai citizens and permanent residents of Thailand. The Blue Book lists all residents registered at a specific address, typically a household. For example, a Thai family residing together would have a single Blue Book listing all family members.
  • Yellow House Book Thailand (Thor Ror 13): This book is specifically for non-resident foreigners residing in Thailand. Unlike the Blue Book, the Yellow Book focuses on a single individual and verifies their residency at a specific address in Thailand. It’s important to note that not all foreigners qualify for a Yellow Book and as such, you should contact your local District Office (Amphoe) for confirmation before starting the application process.

Yellow Book vs. Blue Book House Registration Thailand

So, which book applies best to you and your situation? Here’s a breakdown of the key differences:

  • Eligibility: The Blue Book is primarily for Thai citizens and permanent residents. However, foreigners married to Thai nationals can be added to their spouse’s Yellow Book with proper documentation. The Yellow Book is for non-resident foreigners who meet specific criteria (explained below).
  • Purpose: Both Blue and Yellow Books serve as proof of residence. However, the Yellow Book caters specifically to foreign residents who may not qualify for a Blue Book.

It’s important to remember that a Yellow Book is not mandatory for all foreign residents in Thailand. However, it can offer several advantages, such as simplifying applications for bank accounts, utilities, or obtaining driver’s licences.

Who Qualifies for a Yellow Book?

Obtaining a Yellow Book is generally limited to foreigners who meet one of the following criteria:

  • Married to a Thai Citizen: Foreign spouses of Thai citizens can be registered on a Yellow Book for the marital home.
  • Property Ownership: Foreigners who own freehold property in Thailand can apply for a Yellow Book for that specific property.


The Blue and Yellow Tabien Baan systems might seem a little complex at first glance. However, better understanding the eligibility criteria and purpose of each book will clarify which one applies to your situation.

For further information and specific requirements regarding the Blue and Yellow Tabien Baan and your eligibility, contacting your local District Office (Amphoe) is always recommended.

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