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Business Property

Property agents in Dubai fume over NOCs needed to give clients viewings at some buildings

Agents say even property owners need pre-approvals to give viewings in some cases

Estate agents in Dubai are concerned that more developer/OA companies will issue the same pre-approval requirements for each viewing. And that could easily dent their business prospects.
Image Credit: Agency

Dubai: Property brokers in Dubai are being asked to take pre-approvals each time they bring a client for a viewing at properties owned by one of the biggest developers in town. Their concerns is that even if a handful of other developers – or their OA/property management companies – were to follow the same practice, this could seriously dent their prospects of netting clients.

“A majority of clients don’t want to wait on us getting approval from the developer’s OS and just cancel the viewings,” said Elena Timchenko, Managing Partner at Royal Home Real Estate. “Often, clients are already on-site and don’t want to wait for days for someone to approve if they can view the property or not.”

Some in the industry say that not just estate agents representing a particular property in the building, even the unit’s owner has to go through the same paperwork before they can take someone in for the viewing.

It would have been fine if the No-Objection Certificate (NOC) was required just once for a particular broker. That’s not how it is happening – the concerned OA management firm requires the same paperwork to be cleared each time a unit in one of their buildings need a viewing.

“This procedure has to be done every time - so, instead of any viewings, we need to do a pile of documentation with no guarantee that it will happen,” said Elena. “In our opinion, no-objection certificate requirement for an owner or broker is a clear violation of freehold concept for owners and all licensing concept for brokers. We are licensed to carry out our activities by RERA and by DED (Department of Economic Development).”


Will others do the same?

As of now, estate agents say only one master-developer is insisting on such requirements. But there are some in the industry who believe others could soon make it mandatory at their own buildings. “The intention at the end of the day is for potential buyers or tenants to use the developer’s own property services firm to sell or rent,” said an estate agent. “It does not make for a level playing field.”

According to a developer source, “An NOC requirement is done keeping in mind the building’s other owners or renters. It is only about streamlining the processes for a viewing – and not a denial of service to licensed brokers. Other prominent real estate markets use the same process.”

This procedure has to be done every time - so, instead of any viewings, we need to do a pile of documentation with no guarantee that it will happen

- Elena Timchenko of Royal Home Real Estate

Max demand

Through the summer, buying and leasing activity in Dubai has maintained high levels, as more first-timers take up residencies in the city. The process will only pick up once the new season kicks off in earnest in September.

Estate agents will be hoping that NOCs prior to viewings will be confined to just the one or two developers and their buildings…