Dubai Land Department says property transactions rise 53% amid continued market rebound
Dubai Land Department said on Saturday that the total amount of real estate transactions in Dubai exceeded AED236 billion ($64.2 billion) in 2013, up from AED154 billion in the previous year.
A report released by the state entity's real estate sector development department recorded AED166 billion worth of land mortgages and sales and AED62 billion of housing unit mortgages and sales for the year, with the total number of transactions jumping 53 percent on 2012 to hit 63,652.
Compared with 2012 data, the figures represent an increase in turnover of 53 percent, the Land Department added in a statement.
Sultan Butti Bin Merjen, director general of the Land Department, said: "The transaction figures for 2013 reveal a high level of optimism currently prevailing in the real estate market.
"These can be attributed to the new regulations and procedures issued during the past year, which have contributed to the strengthening of trust and confidence between the various categories of investor.
"We are anticipating a further rise in the growth index this year, boosted by Dubai's winning bid to host World Expo 2020."
Sales and mortgages relating to land transactions accounted for the lion's share (70 percent) of the total real estate figure for 2013.
The Al Thenaya Al Khamesa area of Dubai was revealed to be the most attractive for investors, with transactions from sales and mortgages reaching AED9 billion.
This was followed by Al Barsha South 5, Al Hibiya 3, Al Barsha South 4 and Wadi Al Safa 5.
Dubai Marina was ranked first for apartment sales and mortgages, with the value of transactions equating to AED15.6 billion, followed by Al Thenaya Al Khamesa, Burj Khalifa, Al Warsan 1 and Business Bay.
Earlier this month, Bin Mejren said Dubai property prices could rise by as much as 40 percent this year.
He said in an interview with Bloomberg that the department planned to introduce new rules to control speculation on properties sold before they were built in response to property prices increasing more than 30 percent in 2013.
The Land Department also said this month that it was updating its rental price index, which determined caps on increases depending on the type and location of the property.
Last year the department raised the transaction fee to 4 percent from 2 percent and the UAE Central Bank imposed restrictions on the value of mortgages made available to foreign buyers in a bid to cool the market.
Concerns have been voiced that Dubai's recent Expo victory could cause property developers to build too many residential and commercial projects, and investors to pour too much money into them, inflating a speculative bubble that would eventually burst.
Such a bubble popped in 2008-2010, when the global financial crisis caused Dubai property prices to crash by more than 50 percent, shaking financial markets around the world.
Last month, Knight Frank said Dubai's real estate market is forecast to be the world's top performer in 2014, building on this year's rapid price growth.
The property consultancy's Prime Global Forecast predicted price growth of between 10-15 percent next year, ahead of Asian powerhouse markets such as Beijing and Shanghai.