Determine what type of property you are interested in.

Foreign buyers often choose to purchase either apartments, townhouses, or villas, which are generally located in secure complexes with communal leisure facilities such as tennis courts, swimming pools and gyms.

Since 2002, when, by royal decree, foreign nationals first became eligible to own property, Dubai has enjoyed a construction boom. Ensure you are looking at an area in which foreigners are allowed to buy property. Some of the most popular, luxurious and expensive developments include Emaar Towers, Jumeirah Gardens, International City and Al Hamra Village.

Start Searching

As with any property search, a good place to start is online. There are numerous agencies and estate agents that list properties in Dubai online. You can buy properties from estate agents or from property developers. Estate agents generally sell resale properties, properties that have been built and have previous owners. Developers sell off-plan properties, which may be still under-construction.

Contact Specialist Agents.

If you want help with your search, and want to talk to someone with specialist knowledge about the property market in Dubai, it’s best to employ an estate agent to work with. Estate agents can help you find properties and explain your options to you. Big real estate companies will be used to dealing with foreign buyers and will speak English.

  • Laws and regulations can change quickly in Dubai, so hiring an agent will help you avoid any potential pitfalls.
  • Usually if you hire an Estate Agent, you can expect to pay a fee of between 2% and 5% of the value of the property.
  • You should always check the credentials of anybody you hire. The regulatory body for Real Estate in Dubai is the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA)

Attend Property Fairs.

The property market in Dubai is still relatively young, although growing fast. As a result, a significant amount of property bought by foreigners is bought from developers who may not have built the development yet. Property fairs are a popular way for developers to present their work and meet potential buyers. These property fairs are held all over the world, so look for one visiting a city near you.

Visit Dubai.

Before you think about making a move for a property be sure that you have spent a little time in Dubai. If you are buying a resale property ensure that you view as many properties as you can, and ask the same questions you would ask if you were buying property anywhere else in the world.

  • If you are buying off-plan or construction is not complete, make sure you go to see similar properties by the same developer that are finished.
  • When you are in Dubai, you will also have access to paper listings in specialist local newspapers and magazines, and be able to attend the property fairs that continue all year.

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