DUBAI Think twice before you let out your apartment to bachelors illegally. You could be fined anything from Dh1,000 to Dh50,000, depending on the size of your apartment.
Hundreds of residents learnt this bitter truth when Dubai Municipality fined them for the ‘misuse of the approved plan or approved drawing and accommodating bachelors in unauthorised planning areas’.
One person must occupy only one room. For example, no more than three bachelors can stay in a three-bedroom apartment, otherwise there will be a fine
The bigger the apartment, the bigger the fine.
Until June this year, 317 bachelors had been served eviction notices for violating Dubai Municipality guidelines. But it’s the tenants who had to bear the financial implications.
“The fine has been imposed on the tenants in whose name the rental contract was made,” said Jaber Ahmad Abdullah Al Ali, Head of Inspection, Building Inspection, Building Department Section, Dubai Municipality.
A Dubai Municipality official said bachelors can stay in all residential buildings in Commercial Business District (CBD) areas. They can also stay in residential buildings in designated residential areas such as Al Quoz 4, Ghusais 1, Hor Al Anz and Muteena, among others.
“One person must occupy only one room. For example, no more than three bachelors can stay in a three-bedroom apartment, otherwise there will be a fine,” said Dawood Al Hajri, Director of Planning Department at Dubai Municipality. Al Hajri defines a bachelor as a white collared employee who is single and living here without a family, a wife or husband. According to him, blue-collared workers can live only in labour camps in Mohaisna, Al Quoz and Jebel Ali.
The guidelines do not affect bachelors living in freehold areas.
So far 121 such workers have been fined for living outside these areas.
“Some construction companies let their workers live outside labour camps. This is illegal. They have been evicted and those who sub-let their apartments to these workers have been fined,” said Ali.
Residents sharing their villas with other families have not been spared either, Eviction notices have been served to 313 families on this count.
Since January, Dubai Municipality has also demolished 67 villas and buildings.
“Most of these properties were abandoned by their owners for various reasons,” said Ali. Explaining the demolition process, Ali said when his department comes across a rundown or uninhabited building, they put up a violation notice asking the owner to renovate or occupy the property.
“If they don’t respond within one month, we send them a letter warning that their property will be demolished. If they still do not respond, we publish a demolition notice in newspapers,” he said.