Dubai plans new 'star-ratings' version of rent index in 2018

Total completed residential units estimated at 1 million in freehold, non-freehold areas
Dubai plans new 'star-ratings' version of rent index in 2018
Dubai Land Department, deputy chief executive officer, rental affairs, Mohammed Ahmed Yahya.
By Parag Deulgaonkar
Mon 12 Dec 2016 01:52 PM

Dubai Land Department (DLD) is likely to release the new version of the rent index after the completion of the building classification survey, a senior government official told Arabian Business.

Under the classification survey, each building in Dubai’s non-freehold and freehold communities will be given a star rating depending on its location, amenities and sustainability factors.

Landlords in buildings with higher ratings can charge higher rents than neighbouring buildings. The current rent index does not take into consideration any such factors, giving a general price band for all the properties.

“The existing rent index will be revamped only after the building classification survey is completed next year,” DLD, deputy chief executive officer, rental affairs, Mohammed Ahmed Yahya.

Mohamad Khodr Al Dah, senior director, DLD technical affairs department, confirmed that the survey will finished by end of next year.

“We have completed 25 percent of the survey [nearly 250,000 units] and we expect to complete the entire survey by end of 2017,” he said, adding the estimated residential units across the emirate will be close to 1 million.

While the rent was updated three times a year since 2009, it is revised annually from 2015 with the aim to stabilise prices.

“We are not running a stock market, and so we don’t want to change it more than once a year. Markets will go up and down, but updating it annually helps us to stabilise the market,” he said.

Moreover, the DLD will be holding awareness campaigns next year so ensure tenants and landlords know their rights under the law. The DLD will highlight existing clauses, such as the landlord does not have the right to increase rent if s/he has not given 90-day notice to the tenant.

“There are owners and tenants who have no idea what their rights are. So, next year we will launch campaigns to help them understand their rights and duties under the law,” Yahya said.

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