Residential Real Estate Market in UAE - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2022 - 2027)

The residential real estate market in UAE is segmented by Type (condominiums, villas, and others), key cities and other urban, suburban and rural markets.

Market Snapshot

UAE Residential Real Estate Market Overview
Study Period: 2016 - 2026
Base Year: 2021
CAGR: 12.36 %

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Market Overview

The residential real estate market in UAE is poised to grow at a CAGR of 12.36% by 2026. The residential real estate market came to a halt as a result of Covid-19, as the government implemented lockdowns and citizens were forced to stay at home. The GDP growth in UAE in 2019 remained positive driven by high oil prices, increased production levels, and ease in business regulations across cities like Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

The residential market in the UAE has been slipping due to fierce competition and lesser supply in housing units The real estate prices in the Dubai and Abu Dhabi residential markets have declined by 23 percent and 18 percent respectively since 2018 as demand is slowing and new supply is being added. However, the real estate market is expected to stabilize by 2020. One of the major drivers in the UAE residential property market is the growing transaction value and investment in UAE’s real estate sector, which has resulted in an increase in new development projects in UAE’s property market.

The region is witnessing a decline in residential sale prices which is likely to increase the number of end users buying properties in the UAE’s property market rather than renting them. The UAE government has also announced several initiatives in the 2019 aimed at driving economic and stimulating weakened real estate demand in the country such as introduction of a long-awaited freehold law in Abu Dhabi that allows foreigners to own land within the emirate’s investment areas on a freehold basis for the first time. Additionaly, a new permanent residency “golden card” scheme in Dubai has also been introduced in 2019 that is granted to investors and exceptional workers in a number of sectors.In order to meet the demand-supply mismatch, currently being witnessed in the country an initiative was launched by the Dubai government by the announcement of a new Real Estate Planning Committee. The aim of this committee is to introduce measures to improve the balance between supply and demand. The committee will also develop a comprehensive strategic vision for all major real estate projects in Dubai for the next ten years. These schemes are anticipated to increase the demand for housing units in the country.

The local property market in UAE is also maturing, and there are more developers coming up with their offerings for both ready stock and off-plan units to stimulate demand with local and foreign investors. The developers are also offering attractive payment options to customers with the aim of turning tenants into owner-occupiers.

Scope of the Report

This report aims to provide a detailed analysis on the UAE residential real estate market. It focuses on the market dynamics, technological trends, insights and government initiatives taken in the residential real estate sector. Also, it analyses the key players present in the market and the competitive landscape in the UAE residential real estate market.

Key Cities
Abu Dhabi

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Key Market Trends

New Project Launches in Dubai and Abu Dhabi

In UAE, there were around 23,000 new housing completions in 2019. The residential sector witnessed a year on year increase in the supply of housing units with the developers focus on completion of existing under-construction and launch of  new projects. Most of the new supply was in the form of standalone towers or projects offering less than 2,000 units per project. Some of the prominent new supply in housing units witnessed in Abu Dhabi included 707 units at Al Ghadeer 2 by Aldar Properties and Reflections comrising 192 units at Reem Island.

In Dubai, Seven Tides Developments launched Seven City (3 Towers comprising of 2,617 units) at Jumeirah Lake Towers (JLT), Emaar Properties launched Beach Vista (447 units) at Dubai Waterfront, and Dragon Towers (1,142 units) was launched by Nakheel near Dragon Mart, International City.

Among the landmark developments, two of the largest real estate developers in the region, Emaar Properties and Aldar Properties, entered into a Joint Venture (JV) to develop AED 30 Bn worth of projects. The first two developments as part of the JV are likely to add approximately 9,000 units.



Off-plan housing segment performing well in Dubai

In 2019, more than half of residential real estate sales in Dubai  were off plan rather than completed homes. A total of 3,069 off-plan homes were completed in the first two months of 2019, representing around 55 per cent of the total Dubai residential sales in the same period. There were approximately 1,700 transactions witnessed in the off-plan housing segment in February 2019 for Dubai as compared to 1,666 units sold in February 2018.

This indicates that Dubai real estate is slowly becoming popular for the budget-conscious buyers in equal measure. The softening in house prices is steadily making Dubai property more affordable to investors and end-users. Off-plan sales accounted for a bigger share of transactions for properties below Dh3m whereas secondary market sales contributed a far bigger share in deals for properties worth Dh5m and above, suggesting both investors and end-users prefer less pricey off-plan projects backed by post-handover payment plans.

Some of the leading players in the off-plan market were Emaar which registered 3,590 off-plan transactions cumulatively worth Dhs7.6bn, accounting for the largest volume of transactions at 46 per cent followed by Dubai Hills Estate taking up 11 per cent of the volume of off-plan transactions with 1,092 off-plan registered transactions worth Dhs1.5bn. Damac Properties came third, accounting for 8 per cent of the volume of registered off-plan transactions with 840 transactions valued at Dhs861.9m.


Competitive Landscape

The UAE residential real estate sector has become increasingly competitive. With increasing spends on infrastructure, relaxed laws for foreign investors, new government initiatives to drive investments, and new project announcements is expected to bring an overall development in the real estate sector development which will further enhance the interest of more investors. Some of the major players in the UAE include Aldar Properties, Emaar Properties, Nakheel Properties, Deyaar Properties and Damac Properties.

Recent Developments

April 2019: Deyaar Development has merged 40 plots of land to create Midtown, a 46-hectare flagship development. Midtown is in the heart of Dubai's boom corridor, with direct access to Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road. Its transportation links are bolstered by its closeness to the ports of Jebel Ali and Al Maktoum International Airport.

September 2020: Union Properties has received an AED 400 million offer for a 40% share in its Dubai Autodrome business. Several racing tracks may be found at Dubai Autodrome, a multipurpose motorsport and entertainment venue.

Table of Contents

  1. 1. Introduction

    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study

  2. 2. Research Methodology

  3. 3. Executive Summary

  4. 4. Market Insights

    1. 4.1 Current Economic Scenario and Consumer Sentiment

    2. 4.2 Residential Real Estate Buying Trends - Socioeconomic and Demogpaphic Insights

    3. 4.3 Government Initatives, Regulatory Aspects for Residential Real Estate Sector

    4. 4.4 Insights on size of real estate lending and loan to value trends

    5. 4.5 Insights on interest rate regime for general economy, and real estate lending

    6. 4.6 Insights on rental yields in residential real estate segment

    7. 4.7 Insights on captial market penetration and REIT presence in residential real estate

    8. 4.8 Insights on affordable housing support provided by government and public-private partnerships

    9. 4.9 Insights on real estate tech and startups active in real estate segment (broking, social media, facility management, property management)

    10. 4.10 Market Dynamics

      1. 4.10.1 Drivers

      2. 4.10.2 Restraints

      3. 4.10.3 Opportunities

      4. 4.10.4 Challenges

  5. 5. Market Segmentation (2016-2019) and future outlook

    1. 5.1 Quantitative and Qualitative Commentary on Supply and Demand (Condominiums, Villas, Others)

    2. 5.2 Quantitative and Qualitative Commentary on Supply and Demand (Key Cities)

    3. 5.3 Key Cities

      1. 5.3.1 Dubai

      2. 5.3.2 Abu Dhabi

      3. 5.3.3 Sharjah

    4. 5.4 Quantitative and Qualitative Commentary on Transaction Volumes (covering property types and key cities, other urban, sub-urban and key rural markets

  6. 6. Competitve Landscape

    1. 6.1 Overview (Market Concentration and Major Players)

    2. 6.2 Company Profiles

      1. 6.2.1 Arada

      2. 6.2.2 Azizi Developments

      3. 6.2.3 Aldar Properties

      4. 6.2.4 Nakheel PJSC

      5. 6.2.5 Emaar

      6. 6.2.6 Damac Properties

      7. 6.2.7 Deyaar Properties

      8. 6.2.8 Union Properties

      9. 6.2.9 Manazel

      10. 6.2.10 Bloom Properties

      11. 6.2.11 Dubai Properties

  7. 7. Future of the Market and Analyst Recommendations

  8. 8. Disclaimer

  9. 9. About Us

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Frequently Asked Questions

The UAE Residential Real Estate Market market is studied from 2016 - 2026.

The UAE Residential Real Estate Market is growing at a CAGR of 12.36% over the next 5 years.

Aldar Properties, Emaar, Nakheel PJSC, Deyaar Properties, Damac Properties are the major companies operating in UAE Residential Real Estate Market.

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