Property Buying Guide

This Property guide provides us the following information for the property investors in Dubai .

  • Payment Process
  • Finance Contracts & Lawyers
  • Other cost involved when purchasing
  • Selling Property before completion
  • Residence Visa
  • Legal safeguard for foreign investment

  • Payment process

    The payment process for new build property in Dubai is very straightforward. It may vary slightly from developer to developer but on the whole you can expect similar terms.

    As you may expect, payments are spread over the construction period. The percentage value of the installments is generally 10%. There are often "special offers" available which offer the opportunity for buyers to pay usually 30% and nothing until completion, but please check with us first as these do not apply to all projects.

    It begins with a deposit which will secure the property for you. This is usually in the amount of between AED 7000 – AED 15000. The rest of the deposit, typically 10%, is payable within 7 days. A further installment of 10-15% depending on the project and/or the developer becomes payable within 30 days from the date of reservation of the property.

    Subsequent installments are payable as and when certain works on your property or on the block/tower you have purchased in (if apartment) have been completed. The final installment is paid on completion.


    Mortgages are available to foreigners in Dubai, but typically 30% of the property value must be paid before an application is considered. As with any bank anywhere in the world, proof of earnings and bank references will be required.

    Repayment periods are usually over 15 years. Life insurance and a "Good Health" declaration will be required and for larger mortgage amounts a medical may be required. A credit report (from country of domicile) may also be required for foreign nationals not residing in the UAE.

    Obtaining a mortgage in the UAE can be a long process and it is advisable if possible to raise the funds for the purchase in country of residence.

    Some developers do offer their own finance terms, but it is always advisable to check these against bank terms before proceeding.

    Contracts and Lawyers

    After reservation two copies of the contracts will be sent to the client, both must be signed and returned (either to us for forwarding on or to the developer). The client will receive a signed copy.

    A high percentage of clients do not use lawyers when signing contracts as generally these are non-negotiable. Contracts are very easy to follow and will include clear payment dates and terms.

    Of course you have the right to use the services of a lawyer if you would prefer and there are many international solicitors based in Dubai.

    We can of course recommend one or two if you are stuck. Upon completion, the final contract / title deed is signed in front of a Dubai Notary and the deeds are then recorded with the Lands Registry.

    Other costs involved when purchasing

    Typically there are other costs involved when purchasing property in Dubai .

    Land Registry: There is a fee of 1.5% payable on completion.

    Service charge:There will be service charge payable annually on apartments in towers/complexes.

    Typically a maximum of 15AED per square foot for the first 3 years. As it is freehold ownership, the property owners will have a say that the management company is, therefore the management company will always charge competitive rates.

    Lawyers: If a buyer decides to use the services of a lawyer in Dubai then this cost must be budgeted for.
    Capital growth and rental income is tax free unless the buyer is bringing the money back into the UK . Many investors get around this by setting up off shore accounts.

    Selling property before completion

    Selling a property before completion is permitted but the buyer must be given authority to do so by the developer.

    At least 30% of the property value must have been paid before a buyer can sell on, and there will also be an administration charge of between 1-5% (depending on project) and as stated in the contract of sale.

    Many properties in Dubai are already on as much as their 3rd market before construction even starts.

    Residence Visa

    A residence permit is available through the developer of the project in which you buy. All permits are sponsored by the developer and are renewable every three years at a small fee.

    The application is made for the permit once the property is complete. Please note that the residency permit does not permit the buyer to work in Dubai , only reside there.

    Legal safeguards for foreign investors

    All potential and existing investors are naturally concerned for their interests.

    The Dubai Municipality and the Civil Code of the UAE applies strict codes of standard to building standards, building permits and property sales contracts and developers must maintain these standards.

    Regulations issued by the Municipality with regard to building construction and safety issues are rigid. The contract will stipulate guarantee periods etc, often these are 10 years for construction and workmanship You can rest assured that we only work with very established and reputable developers in Dubai.

    For more Details Contact

    Better Livings Real estate Brokers
    Shop # 1, Supreme Residency, CBD International City 
    P.O. Box: 60809, Dubai UAE
    Tel: (+971 4) 447 2352 | Fax: (+971 4) 447 2351 | Mobile: (+971) 50 2824464
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