Guide to Renting Property in Dubai

Guide to Renting Property in Dubai

Renting a house or apartment in Dubai can be challenging, especially if you are visiting the emirate for the first time. The intricacies involved with the housing market, local laws, paperwork, and signing of various forms can be confusing for the uninitiated. We will inform you about the nuances of renting property in Dubai.


Budgeting, Finding a Realtor and Housing

Before starting your search for a villa or apartments in Dubai, it's crucial to determine how much you're willing to spend on rent, what type of property you need, and how many rooms it should have. Experts suggest that rental costs should not exceed 30% of your monthly income.

A characteristic of Dubai's real estate market is that the leasing and renting of property is strictly regulated by law. No one is allowed to lease or rent living space without signing the necessary agreements; otherwise, administrative penalties will be incurred.

All property transactions in the emirate are conducted with the involvement of realtors and lawyers. Agents are market experts who have the latest information on price trends and new properties, and they not only assist in the buying and selling process but also help in finding landlords or tenants.

Choosing a realtor should be taken as seriously as choosing the housing itself. Assistance should be sought from organizations registered with RERA - the Dubai Real Estate Regulatory Agency. You can check if your realtor is in the registry on the RERA website. Another option is to ask the agent to show their license. This is important because without this credential, any deal involving your agent will be considered invalid.

You may prepare a list of districts where you'd like to rent property in advance, but this is not mandatory. During your meeting with the realtor, you will discuss all nuances regarding search parameters and sign a contract that includes the service fee. The agent will then find suitable options for you and schedule dates to view properties that meet your requirements.

Guide to Renting Property in Dubai

Property Viewing

Before viewing a property, it's best to prepare a list of questions in advance and arrive a bit early to have time to walk around the neighborhood. If possible, ask neighbors about the specifics of living in the particular location or building.

When inspecting the property, experts recommend paying attention to details such as:

  • whether the property needs repairs;
  • the condition of furniture, plumbing, bathroom, and electrical appliances;
  • whether parking space is included in the rent;
  • the amount of daylight in the rooms, how spacious they are;
  • the view from the windows;
  • the placement of outlets;
  • the presence of security cameras in the common areas of the residential complex, intercom, security;
  • if it is a gated community, find out in advance about any visitor rules;
  • whether pets are allowed (if you have any).

If there are any cosmetic defects or technical glitches in the apartment or villa, bring them to the attention of the agent and owner. All faults should be corrected before the contract is signed. Otherwise, it is necessary to include in the agreement a clause about the defects, with a detailed description, or else you will have to correct these issues when moving out.

Things to pay attention to when inspecting the location:

  • how lively the area is, how far the residential complex is from the main road;
  • transport accessibility;
  • how far grocery stores, public recreational areas, pharmacies, and other infrastructure objects are from the house;
  • the approximate distance from the house to your place of study or work;
  • if necessary, the location of the nearest car park;
  • whether construction work is being carried out nearby;
  • how suitable the neighborhood is for families with children.

Also, if you have pets, it's better to find out in advance if they can be walked in the area.

Making an Offer and Reserving a Property

After you've made your choice, discuss all the terms of the contract with the realtor or property owner, including in which cases the rental price may decrease or increase. Clarify the duration of the agreement, the amount of the deposit, and the total costs of renting.

Carefully examine the ownership documents and pay a deposit of 5–10% of the rental cost. If you move in, the deposit will be returned to you. However, if you break the deal, the realtor will transfer the entire deposit amount to the property owner as compensation.

Guide to Renting Property in Dubai

Signing the Lease Agreement

After paying the deposit, it is necessary to sign the lease agreement.

The agreement protects the rights of both the property owner and the tenant. If the owner does not fulfill the contract's conditions, for example, does not take care of the property's maintenance and no conversations help to make them comply with all points of the agreement, you can file a complaint with RERA.

Please note, if you do not have sufficient funds in your account when cashing the checks that you have given to the owner, you will be arrested by law.

Ejari Lease Agreement Registration

The contract must be registered in the Ejari electronic system. After that, the landlord will not be able to change the terms of the contract.

The agreement can be registered by a realtor or by you personally.

The documents required for registration are:

  • the original contract;
  • a copy of the property title deed provided by the owner;
  • copies of the passports of both parties to the transaction;
  • a copy of your Emirates ID.

Self-registration via the website costs AED 172 (about $47), and in-office registration costs AED 220 (about $60).

Guide to Renting Property in Dubai

DEWA Electricity and Water Application

Before applying, you need to check if there are any outstanding debts from previous tenants. This can be done by your realtor.

The following documents are needed to connect utilities:

  • house and apartment number;
  • Ejari number;
  • copies of your and the property owner's passports;
  • completed DEWA form;
  • a copy of your residency visa or the original letter stating that your visa is being processed;
  • a copy of your Emirates ID;
  • payment of the security deposit.

The service will be activated within 24 hours after the refundable deposit is paid.

Water and electricity connection costs:

  • deposit – AED 2,000 ($545) for apartments and AED 4,000 ($1,090) for villas;
  • meter activation: small – AED 110 ($30), large – AED 300 ($82);
  • registration fee and innovation fee – AED 30 (just over $8).

Residential Complex Entry Permit

In some communities in Dubai, you need to arrange a move-in permit in advance. Required documents:

  • photocopy of Emirates ID or passport;
  • proof of payment;
  • copy of the lease agreement;
  • copy of the latest service charge receipt (to be provided by the owner).

Guide to Renting Property in Dubai

Buy and Lease: The Best Areas to Invest in Dubai in 2023

There are many neighborhoods in Dubai with high investment potential in the long term. However, many investors want to know where to buy property to maximize income in the near future.

Mohammed Bin Rashid City

The district's infrastructure is highly developed: there are many schools, including international ones; shopping and sports complexes operate; and landscaped green areas are created.

Developers building in this area, if necessary, provide an installment plan for the purchase of housing. The average annual return on real estate in the area is 8% of its value.

Commercial and residential projects here are implemented by the best UAE construction companies – Meraas Holding and Emaar. Companies Azizi Developments and Sobha also offer budget and luxury apartments in this location.

Guide to Renting Property in Dubai

Dubai Marina

The area mainly consists of premium-class apartment communities, from the apartments of which there are panoramic views of the harbor and the sea. The housing market in the quarter is characterized by high prices and steady demand for residences.

Thanks to luxurious apartments, a beautiful promenade, and the presence of a large number of attractions in this location, there are many tourists and tenants who rent housing for a long time. Investing in apartments in new buildings in Dubai will soon allow you to have passive income from renting out housing.

The average ROI of residences in this area depends on the number of rooms:

  • studios – 6.4%
  • 1-bedroom apartments – 6.2%
  • 2-bedroom apartments – 5.7%
  • 3-bedroom residences – 5.3%
  • 4-bedroom residences – 4%
  • 5-bedroom apartments – 4.5%

The average yield of a villa in Dubai in this quarter:

  • with 2 bedrooms – 3.2%
  • with 3 bedrooms – 4.1%
  • with 4 bedrooms – 4.2%
  • with 5 bedrooms – 5.2%

Business Bay

The district is one of the most in-demand business centers of the metropolis. Most of the objects in this quarter are commercial and office buildings. But there are also several residential communities here.

About 18,000 organizations work in Business Bay, and there are almost no children's playgrounds and squares, residences in this part of the city will become a great option for businessmen and office employees who have not yet started a family.

Housing in the area is bought for both personal living and earning income from renting. Small residences are in high demand here. The average ROI of apartments depends on their area:

  • studio apartments – 6%
  • 1-bedroom residences – 5.8%
  • 2-bedroom apartments – 5.1%

Guide to Renting Property in Dubai

Downtown Dubai

The high-tech and multifunctional community is a platform for profitable investments in residential real estate. The area houses a large number of offices, branches, and headquarters of large organizations, whose employees are foreign specialists. Many of them rent comfortable residences close to work.

Constant flows of tourists from different countries also increase the demand for apartments in the quarter, allowing property owners to earn well. The average ROI of investments in the housing stock of this location depends on the type of real estate:

  • studios – 5.9%
  • 1-bedroom residences – 5.1%
  • 2-bedroom – 4.7%
  • 3-bedroom – 4.3%
  • 4-bedroom – 4.7%
  • 5-bedroom – 4.1%

The yield for villas:

  • with 2 bedrooms – 3.7%
  • with 3 bedrooms – 3%
  • with 4 bedrooms – 3.3%
  • with 5 bedrooms – 5.2%

Palm Jumeirah

The district is located on artificial islands in the Persian Gulf. Here land plots, apartments, penthouses, and villas are sold. The archipelago is very popular among tenants and investors thanks to the rich infrastructure: the world's tallest infinity pool is located in this location, there are beautiful beaches, and a huge number of Michelin-starred restaurants are operating.

Every year this resort area attracts about 4 million tourists. At the same time, 80,000 people from different countries live in this exclusive area.

On the islands, you can earn by renting out property for short and long term. The annual income of housing owners on the archipelago reaches 15% of the cost of apartments.

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