So, you want to live in Dubai! Did you know that this emirate is in the list of most expensive cities for expatriates that want to be in the Middle East, according to Mercer’s 2017 Cost of Living Survey? Why is this? Well, Mercer’s 23rd annual Cost of Living Survey finds that factors like instability of housing markets contribute to the overall high accommodation expenses. In addition, “Dubai in particular has witnessed resurgence in property prices, and rents have been rising in line,” reports Emirates 24|7 that mentions Expo 2020 as one of the causes for the hike in rental values.
It is also true, however, that, according to The National, “the UAE’s property market has faced headwinds as a slowdown in the past two years on the back of a three-year oil slump has weakened demand and dented sales and rental prices.”
The costs of living in Dubai can be high, nonetheless, there are places in the metropolis where rents have fallen recently, such as in Deira, Bur Dubai, Jumeirah Lakes Towers (JLT), Al Nahda and Dubai Marina, as Gulf News Property reveals. In fact, prices have fallen on average from 3.3% to even a 12.7% for one-bedroom apartments. This is obviously good news for future renters, but there are other things that can be done to keep costs at bay.
Tips to avoid paying too much for rent: Avoid the temptation to reside in commercial centers and premium neighborhoods, as rental costs are much higher. Keep in mind that rent in the emirate will vary significantly depending on the area you live in and renouncing to some amenities might make your budget go a long way.
In addition, some Dubai companies are offering their employees large housing allowances as a part of their salary package to lure more working professionals to the region and to retain talented employees by offering competitive compensation packages. Negotiating accommodation as a benefit is definitely a winning option for expatriates.
So where is it most affordable to live in Dubai? An option is Dubai International City, incorporated in July 10, 2004 and founded by Nakheel Properties—a property developer based in Dubai, that offers affordable living in a flourishing residential district. “With over 22,000 residences, including spacious studios and one-bedroom apartments, spread throughout ten distinctly themed precincts.”
- Pros: The arrangement of the city spreads over an area of 800 hectares (8 million square meters) and is a mix of residences, business, and tourist attractions, according to project developer Nakheel Properties.
- Cons: The buildup of the city has yet to be completed and is still in construction with the apartments to accommodate over 60 thousand residents, as noted on its website at http://internationalcity-dubai.com/.
If interested in this accommodation, go to https://www.nakheel.com/en/leasing/international-city.
How about the cost of living in a residence as a student in Dubai? In Dubailand, a student housing complex called Uninest (https://unineststudents.ae/) is available with a total of 424 beds that provides is a great living experience for students in Dubai with utility bills in the rental cost and free shuttle buses to universities, beaches and malls. “The rents are paid monthly and start from Dh2,650 and are up to Dh4,800,” reports Khaleej Times.