Moving house
Charges to relocate a house include the cost of the actual move and the tertiary costs incurred such as utility transfer fees, move-in cleaning and maintenance costs. Image Credit: Stock image

Dubai: When focusing on or pre-occupied by the costs involved in buying or renting another property, the cost of moving is often overlooked. But, moving costs can add up to over Dh1,000 - which is evidence that one needs to keep a close watch on that too.

The health-crisis did tighten purse strings and although consumer spending is currently returning to pre-pandemic levels of normalcy, money lessons learnt during the crisis still compels one to rethink alternative means wherein one can do things more cost-effectively, like in this case - moving or shifting houses. 

2021: Time to think of relocating?

As most house lease renewals come up either during the start to the middle of the year, this is typically a peak season for moving residence. When renting a new house, you need to pay a 5 per cent refundable security deposit to the landlord and a 5 per cent referral fee to the real estate broker. Other charges to relocate a house include the cost of the actual move and the tertiary costs incurred such as utility transfer fees, move-in cleaning and maintenance costs.

Matter experts reveal that people should start searching for a moving company two weeks prior to shifting house and they should book the moving company one week before shifting house.

Cost of moving houses in the UAE

Experts further add that the cost of moving depends on the amount of furniture you are moving, the distance you are moving - whether you are moving within the same emirate, or to another emirate - and the service levels offered by the moving company.

Generally, for a move in the same emirate, the cost to move a studio is Dh800 to Dh1,000, 1-bed apartment will cost Dh1,100 to Dh1,500, a 2-bed apartment will cost Dh1,800 to Dh2,400 and for a 3-bed villa should be around Dh4,000 to Dh5,000. If it’s an inter-emirate move, the company will typically add Dh250 to Dh500 additional transportation charges on top of the cost of the move,

According to MoversZone, the moving charge for a studio apartment ranges from Dh1,000 to Dh1,200, a 1-bedroom apartment costs Dh1,500, 2-bedroom apartment costs Dh2,000+, a 3-bedroom costs Dh3,000, with every extra bedroom adding around Dh1,000. These are all charges for moving within the same city.

Moving to another emirate?

One should increase the moving price by 30 per cent if you are shifting from Dubai to all emirates except Sharjah. However, if you are moving from Dubai to Sharjah, the price will go up by 10 to 15 per cent from the same city charges.

If you are moving in the same building, since no transport is involved, the cost is around 30 per cent less. If you are moving inside the same community, the price will be 15 to 20 per cent less than the same-city moving charges. Although there hasn't been an increase in the cost of moving house during the COVID-19 crisis, many movers have been flexible in offering discounts to support customers during this time.

Cost to restore house to original condition

If you want to get your security deposit back from the landlord, it is better to restore the house to its original condition when you first moved in. You can hire a cleaning service and repaint the walls. The cost of painting an average 1-bed apartment back to white or off-white would cost Dh750 to Dh850, matter experts evaluate. 

It costs around Dh1,200 to Dh1,500 to repaint a 2-bedroom apartment in white or off-white, and cleaning is done after the paint. For a 2-bed apartment, it costs Dh250 for regular cleaning while for deep cleaning, it costs Dh600 to Dh700. Deep cleaning takes around 4 to 5 hours and regular cleaning takes around 2 hours, and this happens after the resident has moved out.

Factor move-in cleaning costs as well

Move-in cleaning and sanitisation is in very high demand at the moment, given the COVID-19 crisis. Once you’ve moved into the new home, you can book a professional cleaning and sanitisation service to make sure your new home is spotless and clear of any germs and viruses - which starts at Dh299 for a studio apartment. 

Customers also usually request for handyman services to help with hanging frames and curtains, installing shelves, connecting white goods, etc, which costs on average about Dh150 per hour. It is also recommended to take out home contents insurance, which costs around Dh300 to Dh500.

Many villa tenants require pest control ahead of moving in and this ensures you do a preventive pest control treatment of your villa to remove ants and cockroaches - a service that starts at about Dh299 for a 2-bedroom apartment.