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20 April 2024

Foreign residents ‘fail to register properties’

By Muna Ahmed

Only a tiny proportion of foreign residents who have bought property in Dubai have registered their purchases with the emirate’s Lands Department, a senior official has revealed.

More than 4,000 properties have been entered in the books, said Director-General Sultan bin Buti bin Mijrin. But this figure represented only the tip of the iceberg in Dubai’s booming real estate market, he told Emirates Business.

“We have advised all property owners to register with the department or else face higher fees,” he said. “Despite that we have seen very few registrations in comparison to the total number of properties sold.

“Our figures do not represent the actual number of foreign investors in Dubai’s property sector – they cover only those who have registered with us. There are many who register only with the developers and not with us.”

Bin Mijrin said Indians topped the list of owners with nearly 700 registrations. “Britons come next with 489 buyers, followed by Iranians with 373. Among GCC nationals, Kuwaitis topped the list, followed by Saudis, Qatari, Omanis and Bahrainis.

“Dubai’s healthy economic image and the stability of the UAE are the most important reasons for foreigners to invest in property here.”

The property market is an attractive and promising sector.

“Foreigners buy in Dubai for many reasons. Some buy properties to live in. Others – especially GCC nationals and other Arabs – buy holiday homes. Then there are those who treat property as an investment, either to lease or resell.”