First look:  The View Palm Jumeirah, Dubai's new observation deck
Private listings immediately restrict access to those who have the means and are in the mood to buy. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Private listings - or pocket listings, as my American friends would call them - refer to the practice of brokers selling a home through private networks rather than on the open market. Over the course of the pandemic, the number of private listings have skyrocketed.

It is difficult put to put an exact figure, but I would estimate that as many as 20 per cent of all our super-prime sales are done via the private listings service where discerning buyers meet even more discerning sellers. Brokers and buyers alike credit these private listings with offering a leg up in a Dubai market where, in the super-prime areas at least, demand for the right home far outstrips supply.

In areas where there is a shortage of inventory, sellers can enjoy discretion and create a sense of exclusivity around their off-market properties. Private listings tend to appeal to sellers because they allow for home transactions without multiple viewings. Removing the mere thought of open market buyers marching through their homes is sometimes a very attractive proposition.

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Discrete buy and sell

As a prop-tech company, we as a digital destination that allows people to browse, sell, research and invest in super-prime homes with the click of a button or tap of the screen. Our Private Listings service, which is a password protected online system, gives sellers an avenue to market their homes safe in the knowledge that digital access to the property can only be obtained via password, which is issued only after the buyer’s credentials have been fully verified.

Using this tech-enabled private listing service, our team can connect verified buyers directly with privately listed homes while allowing sellers to have complete discretion and anonymity. The verification process for buyers who enquire on private listings is robust with KYC and proof-of-funds required. Our private listings truly are for the discerning few, and discerning they must be with private listings across Dubai listed at eye-watering price point.

Can be anywhere from Dh100m

Beachfront luxury on the Palm Jumeirah, as an example, starts at Dh100 million, with some homes hitting the Dh250 million mark. The struggle in this market is super-prime inventory and the sellers of such homes are looking for a more refined, structured sales approach.

Our private listing service is a blended approach to the norm, where listings are all about insider knowledge and the ‘old boys club’, if you will. Using our digital platform, we bring some of that knowledge to the right UHNW home buying audience. Through a clever use of technology, we restrict access to private listings to only those who have the wherewithal to complete a transaction at that level.

Many high networth buyers do not realize that there are homes available in Dubai at Dh250 million as they are not hon the open market. Our service serves to remedy that position and to create a dedicated channel for super-prime transactions.