An Expat’s guide to real estate in Dubai
There are around 7.8 million expatriates living in Dubai acc. to a report by Guide2Dubai. Some of these expatriates have been living in Dubai for around 50 years. For most of them, UAE is like a second home which they don’t like leaving. For those staying in the UAE for more than 3 years, buying property can be a better option rather than renting. This guide will tell you all you need to know before you start your property search.
There are many perks that Dubai offers like high quality of life, tax-free incomes which attracts expats from across the world. But like every good thing all of this comes with a cost. Living in Dubai can get expensive. One of the major components of that expense in rent. It can account for as much as 40% of their monthly income, burning a major hole in people’s pockets.
Buying property is something that expatriates tend to stay away from because of reasons such as job and residency security, uncertainty about stay period in UAE, big down payments, among others. So let’s take a look at the reasons that why buying can be a better option than renting.
WHY BUY ?
- Bank’s instalments on house mortgages are usually lower than monthly rents and you don’t have to worry about increase in rents.
- You can get loans on interest rates as low as 3%.’
- At the end of the day, you get to own the home you live in.
- Dubai is continuously boosting its infrastructure so you can expect the prices to rise giving you good returns on your investment.
So now that we have sorted that you should buy property in Dubai. The next question is where.
WHERE CAN EXPATS BUY ?
- Any leasehold property across Dubai, no restrictions at all.
- A freehold property in one of the 23 areas, including Al Barsha south, Emirates hills, Dubai Marina and Palm Jumeirah.
In the specified areas, the expats can buy anything including villas, apartments and townhouses.
WHAT WILL IT COST ?
While depending on the the kind of home you’re investing in, other factors can affect the prices too. Factors included are location of the house, stage of construction, access to facilities are some of the factors that can come into play. Above all said you can own a house in Dubai for as less as Dh500,000 going upto several millions.
But worry not, expats have access to mortgages too but there are some restrictions. Acc. to the UAE Mortgage cap law non-UAE nationals should have a cash payment of at least 25% of the property value along with the associated purchase costs. The minimum down payment requirement varies depending on the type of purchase.
HOW TO BUY ?
It can be a bit complicated if you don’t know the rules and regulations of buying. There are some steps that needs to be followed so that you don’t get in trouble with any regulatory authority. It is important that one understands all the additional fees that are associated so that you can be prepared from the beginning.