How to Buy Your Dream House in Dubai: 6 Things You Need

Wondering where the best place to settle in would be? While many countries can provide a good home for you, Dubai in the UAE is most likely the place you’re looking for.

Also called the ‘City of Gold’ and the most populous city in the country, Dubai still attracts many property buyers today. This is likely because of its stable and robust economy, overall safety rating, and strategic location.

It is also home to many tourist destinations and offers affordable luxury living and tax perks, so it won’t be surprising if you consider it the right place to buy a home and settle in.

But before you begin shopping around new real estate projects in Dubai, there are six things you need to make your dream a reality, such as:

1. A well-thought-out budget

If there’s one thing that will greatly affect your property purchase, it’s most likely your budget.

When planning to buy a house in Dubai and everywhere else in the world, creating a well-thought-out budget is the most basic step you need to take. This is a fact that won’t change regardless if it’s your first or subsequent property purchase.

That said, first-time buyers often make mistakes during this part of the process, primarily due to their lack of experience. They look only at what’s presented to them (i.e., the outright price of a property) and fail to account for other expenses they will incur during the purchase.

Of course, you also need to consider other financial commitments you have along with your current earning potential to ensure that you can afford the property you’re planning to buy. This mortgage calculator should provide you with the crucial numbers you need to make a decision:

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2. Downpayment

Besides the budget calculated to cover the total cost of your property purchase, you must also make sure you have funds for the downpayment. If you’re making the purchase on a mortgage, you need to handle this in advance.

In Dubai, the typical down-payment required upon signing of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) is 10 per cent of the total property purchase value. For people from other countries wishing to engage in a real estate purchase, at least 25 per cent down-payment of the complete property value might be required.

This means that the sooner you save up cash for the downpayment, the better.

3. A complete understanding of all fees and charges

As you organise your budget, you’re bound to encounter other fees and charges that aren’t immediately apparent in real property listings. Besides the price of the property, you also need to think about additional expenses during the purchase, such as:

  • government fees;
  • transfer fees;
  • broker fees;
  • property deposit;
  • bank charges;
  • cost of documentary requirements; and
  • potential exchange rate fluctuation.

Alone, each of these fees may not seem much. But when combined and added to the price of the property, they might overwhelm you and your finances.

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While it’s not mandatory, you can use a lawyer to help you with all the paperwork and negotiate the purchase. If you choose to do so, you should also include the representation costs you’ll incur in your calculations.

On top of that, you may need to pay a registration fee of about 2 per cent of the property cost if you’re planning to build a structure from scratch.

4. Property verification

Now that you’ve handled your finances, the next thing you need to do is to verify the property you’re interested in. This is especially important if you’re a first-time buyer to avoid falling victim to a fraudulent transaction or scam.

First, make sure that the seller has the legal rights to sell the property. Check the property title for this purpose.

Next, determine whether there are any pending debts linked to it. Look for signs of mortgage, lien, tenancy rights, and the like. You can accomplish this using the No Objection Certificate or NOC (more on this later).

Also, check the legitimacy of the real estate broker you’re working with. Make sure they have a Dubai Land Department (DLD) registration applied through the Real Estate Regulation Authority (RERA). Don’t forget to ask for a valid broker ID.

5. Documentary requirements

Both buyers and sellers need to complete different sets of documentary requirements for the real estate transfer. As the purchaser, you need to present the following to buy a property in Dubai:

  • Passport
  • Emirates ID
  • Residence visa copy
  • Photos

Since 2012, the law covering the property rent and purchase for foreigners has become more straightforward. However, expats still need to present a valid passport to prove their identity.

But while residency permits aren’t necessary for buying a property, you should still get one considering that you’ll be staying in the city while you’re processing the purchase.

Take note: UAE offers six-month visas for property buyers. The Property Holders Visa lets foreign nationals stay in the country while they look for properties to invest in.

To qualify, consider buying a property with a value higher than 1 million dirhams, or about $272,000. Also, remember to register the purchase as an individual and not as a company.

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6. Purchase forms and other paperwork

The paperwork needed to buy a property in Dubai may vary depending on the circumstances, but there are a few basic things you will need to complete the purchase. This includes:

Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

This certifies all terms and conditions outlined and agreed upon during negotiations between the buyer and seller of a property. It is a formal and legally binding contract that must include details such as the expected date of property completion and penalties for the developer in case project delivery is delayed.

No Objection Certificate (NOC)

The NOC is acquired from the real estate developer in Dubai in charge of the property you wish to purchase. This should show that every utility and service charge has been paid and indicate that the developer doesn’t object to the sale of the property.

Make your dream home a reality

Acquiring a dream house in Dubai is not a simple task, so you need to do a bit of research to make sure you’re doing everything right. Begin by completing the items on this list and make your dream home a reality.