Dubai landlords, tenants call for end of 'ghost listings'

Urge Rera to implement Simsari multiple-listing service asap

Simsari - the Real Estate Regulatory Agency’s (Rera) multiple listing service in Dubai - was set to go 'live' on September 1, but it hasn’t.

Property renters and buyers are calling for it to go online as soon as possible, so they know listings aren't fake and that they are dealing with registered agents only.

Emirates 24|7 reported on July 29 that Rera urged registered agents to list all their inventory on the MLS system before the end of August. Rera is set to make an announcement soon on the project.

Rahul Jaiswal, who currently stays in Sharjah, is looking for a one-bed apartment in Dubai.

He says: “I read about Simsari and logged on to their website. But it's not yet active.

"I wanted to use it as my source for finding an apartment in Dubai. Since the rental scams have been uncovered, I want Rera to launch the site so I know the listings are genuine.”

Ruby Leen, who has just moved to Dubai from Manila, echoes the same sentiment.

“I read about the scams and so i am making sure that I deal only with registered agents.

"I do want the official listing website to go active early so I feel that I am at least protected.”

Property owners also believe Simsari will assist in bringing an end to fake listings and transparency in the market.

Shabir K, who owns an apartment in Dubai Marina, says: “I wasn’t aware that my apartment was up for rent till I got a call from a realty agent.

"Rera’s Simsari plan is really good for the market since the listing will be monitored by them. I hope it will be the end of freelancers.”

We reported earlier that in a notice sent to brokerage firms on July 19, Rera said: “We urge you to register on Simsari.

"Kindly note that the deadline for registration is August 31, 2012, and will be mandatory to use starting from September.

"Consequently, all Rera approved-brokers who fail to register on Simsari before the aforementioned deadlines will be penalised.”

The notice further said: “We believe that top performing companies such as yours along with Simsari, will shape and regulate the industry, establish transparency in the real estate market and align the relationship between owner and real estate broker.”

Real estate experts say the move will reduce the number of “ghost” listings, common in the UAE, and, more possibly, the agency being able to limit listing of one property with not more than three agencies.

In order to bring transparency in the market and control broker activities, Rera had recently unveiled plans to fine brokers instead of their brokerage firms if the former was found to have misled investors, co-operated with unlicensed brokers or made phone calls to their clients to promote/advertise a project.

In July, Rera imposed fines totaling Dh900,000 on 22 real estate companies and brokerage firms during the first half of 2011 for violations.

(Home page image courtesy Shutterstock)



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