Rental Guide

Rental Guide for Dubai

The great Dubai property boom of 2008 was followed by the Dubai property bust of 2009, when prices sank by up to 60 percent, cranes stopped turning and many of the city’s building projects were canned, stalled or fast-tracked from the drawing board to the waste bin. In the midst of this slowdown, property scandals and disputes became more common, and government authorities quickly moved to crack down on those looking to take advantage of the changing fortunes in the emirates. Fast forward to 2012 and the troubles have moved down the food chain, from developers and owners to tenants, and there have been a number of well-publicised rental scams in the past year.



Signing the contract

You’ve found the apartment of your dreams. So how can you go about securing it quickly and efficiently, without the wool being pulled over your eyes?
 Check the internet to see that the rent is reasonable (Editor's note: try - according to the Decree No 2 of 2011, the Index will provide a fair range reflecting an updated market analysis in Dubai) then make sure you see evidence of proof of ownership from the landlord, such as a title deed or original sales contract and passport copy. To secure the property, you’ll have to pay a five percent deposit to the landlord. Make sure you use a reputable Real Estate Regulatory Agency [RERA]-approved agent.

What questions should you ask the agent?
Who is liable for the chiller [A/C] fees? Chiller fees are usually charged on properties that have a centralised A/C. Typically, it is the landlord who pays the chiller charges, but there are certain areas in Dubai where chiller fees are charged separately. (Editor's note: it is often the case that the cost of A/C connection is the responsibility of the landlord and the cost thereafter is the tenant responsibility.)

How can you spot a dodgy estate agent, and what steps can should you take to ensure they’re the real deal?
The tenant should ask to see the agents’ business card, as well as their RERA card. This will show that the agent is a certified broker through RERA and is not a freelancer – freelancing is illegal. Check that they are registered on the land department website