A third of Dubai's tenants want to pay off their annual rents through 12 cheques. And they are willing to pay more as rent for such a facility. (Picture is for illsutartive purposes.) Image Credit: Agency

Dubai: Here’s a detail that landlords in Dubai should take note of - tenants are willing to pay slightly higher rents if they are allowed 12 cheques. In fact, 34 per cent of respondents in a new survey reckoned they wouldn’t mind paying 5 per cent more if the 12-cheque formula is used.

As many as 45 per cent said they would prefer to pay via more instilments rather than the single or four-cheque regime that most landlords follow here. In the recent past, landlords have been more willing to offer multiple cheques in a bid to get their properties filled. But someone offering a 12-cheque facility remains a distinct minority.

“Dubai’s renters have suffered for far too long, with the lack of price transparency, the financial burden of one or two cheques and mismatches between pictures and the property advertised,” said Rashid Al Ghurair, CEO of Cafu. “Renters are crying out for change.”

His company had commissioned the study on what tenants in Dubai were facing and what their hopes for change would look like.

Being restricted to fewer cheque payments and inaccurate listings were some of their main grievances, as per the study. Over a third of respondents asked for more transparent price negotiations, while a similar number said they would like to limit the involvement of the agent.

An app to ease rental pains

Al Ghurair now plans to bring out an app that he says would ease some of the typical issues related to the rental process. “Technology is an enabler and we can’t ignore how it can bring positive change to Dubai’s real estate market,” he said. “We are developing a tech solution that is built on tenant-centric values to empower residents at every stage of the rental journey and help landlords find and retain the right tenants quicker.”

Recently, his company Cafu launched a mobile fuel filling service.

Big gap between expectations and reality

The Cafu-sponsored study fimnds:
* Two-thirds of respondents said the property did not match their expectations;
* 45 per cent said the surrounding area was not up to par;
* 30 per cent faced difficulties coordinating timings with their agent;
* A quarter struggled in their communications with the agent; and
* 45 per cent have been restricted to making fewer cheque payments.