View of Jumeirah Lakes Towers in Dubai. Image Credit: Pankaj sharma/Gulf News Archive

Highlights

  • Rents have either stabilised or dropped in Dubai, according to residents
  • Tenants show their latest tenancy contracts showing lower rates
  • Others expect to get good rental deals in the coming months 

Rents are stable or lower, latest tenancy contracts in Dubai show as more residents are now able to negotiate lower rates and flexible payment plans.

The sentiment among tenants is positive, with most expecting to get good rental deals in the coming months. It is a tenants' market and landlords are realising it by providing flexible payment plans.

Gulf News spoke to a cross-section of people on their current rental prices and compared them to where they stood a year ago.

Here's what they said:

Egyptian, Mohammad Mordi, 30 is one of perhaps many who has been able to take advantage of the recent rental drop in Dubai. From previously staying in a one-bedroom apartment paying Dh70,000 per annum rent in Al Barsha, Mordi moved to a two-bedroom pad in Dubai Silicon Oasis two months ago paying Dh53,000 per annum. His new building in DSO also comes with a number of facilities like gymnasium, swimming pool among others. “There are really good deals in the market and one has to be on the look-out for good properties,” he said.

The Dubai Silicon Oasis technology free zone finds favour among families due to its close proximity to schools, universities and tech firms. Image Credit: Gulf News archives

Jordanian expat Rania could not agree more. She too upgraded her house a couple of years ago, thanks to falling rents. She was previously living in a three-bedroom apartment in Jumeirah Lakes Towers (JLT) paying a rent of Dh150,000 per annum.

But she now lives in a plush four-bedroom independent villa with a private garden paying just Dh200,000 per annum. What is more the rent for her villa has remained stable the last two years.

“We are going to see more demographic shifts as people move to bigger and better places for lower rents. As for the Meadows community, it is a very matured development. There are playgrounds, swimming pools, a fitness centre all nearby. I believe I have secured a real value for money deal,” she said.

Ideal for families to spend time outdoors, The Springs features landscaped gardens, cycle paths and parks. Image Credit: Gulf News archives

In the neighbouring community, an Indian expat, Deepika Sharma (38), also said her rent of Dh110,000 for a two-bedroom townhouse in Springs has remained the same last two years. “I renewed my lease in September and the landlord decided to charge me the same rent. I did have to negotiate a bit with him, but I was happy he agreed,” said Sharma who works as a digital planner for a private company in Dubai.

She is paying her rent in two cheques.

The second bed-room was very tiny and nobody slept there. The building was very old and had no facilities

- Annie Espera, Al Nahda 2 resident

Filipina, Annie Espera said she has been able to massively save on rents this year after moving into a brand new building in Al Nahda 2, close to the pond park. Her one-bedroom apartment is priced Dh48,000 per annum and it comes with facilities like gymnasium and swimming pool. Her rent is settled in four cheques.

Espera said she has had a major saving in rent as she was paying Dh56,000 per annum for a two-bedroom pad in a very old building. “The second bed-room was very tiny and nobody slept there. The building was very old and had no facilities. So definitely I have been able to upgrade my house. There are fabulous deals for lease in the market, one has to take time scouting around for a good price,” she said.

A view of the Remraam community Image Credit: Supplied

There are other similar sized apartments in Remraam that are even going for Dh75,000 per annum.

- Nabeel Mahmoud, Remraam resident

Indian, Nabeel Mahmoud, (37), too said he has seen a massive rent drop in the last one year for his two-bedroom apartment in Remraam. From paying Dh85,000 per annum last year, Mahmoud has been able to negotiate a great deal with his landlord to lower this rent to Dh78,000 per annum. “There are other similar sized apartments in Remraam that are even going for Dh75,000 per annum.”

“My wife and I are happy living here and the fact that our landlord is reasonable, we plan to stay here for some time. We are extremely relieved with the rental drop, it is a huge saving in our pockets,” said Nabeel.

But the rent has remained the same the last two years

- Mohammad Zubair, Al Nahda 2 resident

Indian, Mohammad Zubair, (36), has lived six years in the same building in Al Nahda 2. The reason being, there have been no major shift in rental prices these last years. He is currently paying Dh42,000 per annum for a two-bedroom apartment in Al Nahda 2. When he moved here six years ago, the rent on this apartment was going at Dh38,000 per annum, marking a mere 1.1 per cent increase. “But the rent has remained the same the last two years,” said Zubair who lives with his wife and five year old daughter in this Al Nahda apartment.

The Gardens, developed by Nakheel comprises of 129 low-rise buildings with 3,828 apartments of one, two and three bedrooms

- Nandini Shekhawat, The Gardens resident

Indian Nandini Shekhawat, (40), living in a three-bedroom apartment in The Gardens, said her rent fell to Dh95,000 per annum from Dh105,000 per annum last year. As per her latest tenancy contract which she signed last month, Shekhawat has also been able to negotiate a more flexible payment plan for her lease. She will now pay her rents in six cheques versus four cheques last year. “The Gardens, developed by Nakheel comprises of 129 low-rise buildings with 3,828 apartments of one, two and three bedrooms. The community development comes with lush landscaped gardens, playgrounds, tennis and basketball courts, swimming pools, 24-hour security and we are very happy living here,” she added.

A Golden Sands building in Bur Dubai Image Credit: Gulf News archives

I pay Dh93,000 per annum rent for a two-bedroom pad. My lease is up for renewal in May and I am positive I can negotiate for a better price with my landlord

- Danny Saldanha, Bur Dubai resident

Danny Saldanha, 40, Indian is a devout fan of the Golden Sands buildings in Bur Dubai. He has lived in one of them for straight seven years with no plans to shift anywhere else. And why should he? Rents have remained the same for the last two years for him. “I pay Dh93,000 per annum rent for a two-bedroom pad. My lease is up for renewal in May and I am positive I can negotiate a better price with my landlord. People who have moved into similar sized apartments in the Golden Sands building are renting for lower rates. Rents are definitely on the downward trend. What I have also seen is that rental prices are way lower than the benchmark set up by the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (Rera),” said Saldanha who lives in the apartment with his wife and daughter.

“Take a look around buildings in Bur Dubai and you will find many “To let” and “vacancy” boards everywhere. From a location perspective, Bur Dubai is very central too,” he added.

According to reports by realty agents and experts, rentals have declined across Dubai. Downtown and Discovery Gardens rents dropped by 12 and 14 per cent, respectively; at Jumeirah Village, the decline has been around 15 per cent in the 12 months up to September end. The only exception to the double-digit drops is at Dubai Marina, where rent declines averaged 8 per cent during this period, according to data from Asteco, the property services firm.