The question whether one should invest in Dubai’s real estate market or not has been floating around the air for months, especially after the recent drop in property prices and the spike in rent. Investors and residents alike are wondering whether it is safe to put their money into realty. propertyfinder’s first Property Investment Seminar presented a VIP panel of expert professionals in the field of real estate, and shed light on the pressing questions regarding investment.
The right climate
A number of factors play a role in Dubai’s position in the middle east as a strong economic force:
- Political stability: a factor that sets the country apart from its MENA neighbors. The UAE has become a model of political stability at a time when some nations in the region are witnessing unrest.
- Changing regulations: the recent years have seen a continuous change and alterations in ownership regulations and laws in the Emirate. These all seem to be in the best interest of the owner. An example can be made of the current talks and negotiations regarding will and inheritance rights for non-Muslim property owners.
- Massive development projects: never underestimate the pace at which Dubai moves, both economically and socially. The emirate has currently a number of mega-development projects such as Dubai Water Canal, Meydan One and Dubai South.
The right prices
Dubai property prices are sinking noticeably faster than rent rates, and for those looking for the right moment to tap into the real estate market, this could be it. Experts agree that the current prices in the market are in favour of those who buy, not rent. As rental rates continue to frustrate residents who are eagerly waiting for them to fall, recent findings show that it is cheaper for a person to buy a property in Dubai than to rent one, especially if they are planning on settling in the country for the long run.
To simplify things further, think about it this way:
- When you are renting a property, you are giving away money for a temporary service.
- Rental rates will continue to rise as we get closer to Expo 2020.
- At the current rates, it is cheaper to pay a mortgage loan than to pay rent on a monthly basis.
- When you purchase a property, you are paying for a service that is permanent.
- Right now, real estate prices are lower than previous years, and are expected to rise closer to Expo 2020.
- Unlike rent, a rise in property rates is very beneficial for the owner.
The following two graphs show the expected rental and purchase rates by the year 2020, courtasy of Warren Philliskirk, managing director at mortgagefinder.ae
But not everyone can afford to give up rent and become a homeowner. It is a good time to buy, however, potential buyers need to make sure they can afford to pay the deposit and are eligable for a mortgage says mortgagefinder.ae general manager, Warren Philliskirk.
The right opportunities
When it comes to the opportunities real estate investment presents, Dubai has plenty. However, the main investment opportunities remain linked to Expo 2020 and its effects on the economy.
Architectural Impression of Expo 2020 location
Experts agree that investing before Expo 2020 is a guaranteed win because Dubai is expecting 17.5 million people to visit the city, and these people will need a place to stay. So if you are looking to invest in properties to gain revenue, then seriously consider buying to let. Aside from visitors, Expo is creating thousands of job opportunities and officials are expecting a large number of expats to relocate to Dubai.
Aside from winning the bid to host Expo 2020, Dubai enjoys a reputation for being the number 1 expat destination in the Middle East as recent studies have shown. All figures indicate that Dubai has plenty to offer, and is a safe choice for first time property investors.
For those speculating that the current drop in property prices is an indicator of an approaching bubble or an economic disaster, investing in the current market might seem like a risk. However, these rumours have no weight according to professionals in the field. The notion that supply and demand dynamics have an effect on the property market is not necessarily true, and will not affect the buyer who buys the right property at the right time. According to Stuart Cassidy from IFA Hotels & Resorts, all the rumours surrounding the Dubai real estate situation are not necessarily true, and if they were, Dubai has shown time and time again its ability to adapt to change and find new ways to emerge as a leading force in the global economy. For those considering the global market as an indicator of Dubai’s real estate market are mistaken; the graph below shows that global market trends and Dubai market trends are seldom similar.