Friday, January 25, 2013

Real Estate Market Outlook in Dubai and the UAE

The outlook for the real estate market in the United Arab Emirates is much improved over that of the previous few years. Much of this is due to all segments of the real estate market in Dubai currently experiencing a recovery, to the extent that prime office rents are rising for the first time since 2008. The bursting of the real estate market bubble in 2008 dropped these prices in Dubai as much as 65%. In order to avoid a repeat performance, the government is taking steps to ensure that sustained growth is not over exuberant.

However, up to 70% of property purchases are made in cash, which makes it difficult for the government to regulate the market's growth. Experts remain cautiously optimistic, as they watch Dubai's market making a broad recovery; though regulations are not yet in place to avoid another recession, they do not foresee a repeat of 2008 in the near future. Abu Dhabi's real estate market, on the other hand, is estimated to be 18-24 months behind Dubai's market. Plans are now in the works that should see Abu Dhabi experience a recovery on the scale of Dubai's sometime in 2014.

The real estate market is expected to continue its broad recovery during the next few months and well into the rest of 2013, though growth approaching an economic boom is not expected for this year. Financial experts have identified seven major trends expected to determine the UAE's market for the rest of 2013:

    Dubai's market will display a return of investor confidence. The Abu Dhabi market, however, will not yet see a similar upturn. Factors driving Dubai's market gains include the UAE's economic growth, increased employment, safe haven status, improved pricing and rental performance, multiple new real estate project announcements over the past six months, and the UAE Central Bank setting new mortgage caps.

    Several factors will limit the rate of development. Off-plan sales, IPO bonds and bank loans barely support the current rate of growth. This means most developmental funding will come from private money and overseas cash investors.

    Much of the foreign funding in 2013 is expected to come from Chinese and South Korean investors.

    Increased supply in real estate will benefit buyers and tenants, but may offset the positive impact on the market.

    2013 will see a greater concern for health and safety, with occupants making demands and legislation ensuring the adoption of best practices. This favors a best-value vs. lowest-cost approach to investments.

    Likewise, 2013 will likely see a greater focus on initiatives for sustainable, 'green' buildings.

    UAE government will continue to influence the market's growth with initiatives such as mortgage caps, and stimulus packages.

These trends support the widely-held view that the UAE's real estate market will see a broad recovery in 2013; a good, stable growth, that, if not an economic boom, will not result in a dangerous market bubble like that of 2008.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Advantages of Living in Apartments Near Campus

So, you're heading to college this fall. That's super! But have you given any thought to where you'll live? If living in a dorm isn't something you're looking forward to, have you considered living in one of the many amazing apartments near campus?

Living off campus has many terrific advantages. But first, take a look at the disadvantages of living in a dormitory.

Little Privacy

Finding a space where you can truly be alone in a dorm is as hard to do as figuring out who actually did create the Internet. Sharing bathrooms, bedrooms and sound space is challenging. In fact, you probably won't be able to ever have any quiet time because, with so many other students, there's always something going on.

Little Space

Dorm rooms are notoriously small. You won't even be able to bring everything to school from home that you'd most likely want to bring. And, if you're a true fashionista, you'll have to leave some of your clothes and shoes at home.

Low Grades

Dorm life can also be extremely social and your GPA may even be affected negatively. If you're not a disciplined person in your study time, you may make many unwise choices over when to study.

As stated previously, living in apartments near campus has many great advantages. Here are a few of them:

True Independence

One of the best reasons for living off campus is that you won't have as many rules to adhere to. It's true dorm rules are geared to each student's safety and protection but for the older or more independent student, they can be quite a hindrance. Living off campus affords you the ability to set your own rules.


Does having your own bedroom, a huge closet and a nice little kitchenette sound appealing to you? Even if you choose to have roommates to help with living expenses, you can make sure you have your own space quite easily right in your very own home.

Sense of Responsibility

One day you may choose to buy your own house. Living in apartments near campus will enable you to establish a rental reputation and build a credit history. This, in turn, will increase your sense of responsibility. You'll be the one to make sure your rent is paid on time, your living space and clothes are clean and your groceries are purchased and cooked. These are excellent ways to become more responsible.

When making the choice to live in a dorm or in apartments near campus, you are the only one who can decide what's most important to you. A good way to decide is to make a pros and cons list. And, be sure to check first with your school's housing regulations. Some schools don't permit freshmen to live off campus.

Living in apartments near your school can be a true delight. It can definitely help make your college experience a memorable one.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Buying Smaller - The Cons

Recently we highlighted a few benefits of owning/living in a smaller arrangement. i.e. downsizing or reducing your "lebensraum."

What irks you about these living arrangements? Normally in apartments as opposed to houses you will find yourself living 'smaller.'

This week we look at some of the detriments associated that cramps your style...

Negative 1 - Less Control

You have got slack strata managers, poorly trained/careless real estate agents, fellow tenants and neighbours, executive committees, sub committees and stubborn owners and minorities holding a building back. This lack of control can really affect some people. Beware the fun police and beware the constant meddling into each others affairs!

Negative 2 - Space (lack thereof)

Yes, this one is pretty obvious. With most smaller properties, the lack of internal and external space (balconies, decks etc) can impact on 'your quiet enjoyment' of a property. Not having the ability to simply sun bake nude (if you so wish) or escape from the world and worry about peering neighbours, can cause concern for some people! Having your kids, partner or your flatmate seemingly everywhere in your abode can be mind numbing as well. To prepare, think about how much room you have now and assess what your dynamics will be in the future as well.

Negative 3 - You can't host (as many) family and friends

Some may argue this is a great thing! Having no room for sleepovers for friends and families can upset the in-laws, visiting children and cause a nuisance when you have dear friends wanting to visit and spend some time with you. I guess that is what a hotel is for...

Negative 4 - Organisational skills

As you have less cupboard space now and you may have downsized to an apartment, it is unlikely you now have a garage, shed, man cave or storage - your ability to hold onto past materials and memories will be reduced. You will have to find your "de-clutter self" and be more organised to put away toys, bikes, clothes etc to keep the living arrangement with some semblance of order. Can you handle throwing away all your 'precious'?

Negative 5 - A good party

Having a large property can mean having a large party and entertaining people on your deck, lawn or having a 6 burner sizzling away the magic from the BBQ. You may even have to downsize your friends list!

Of course we like to stay positive and these are just some elements that may sway a decision or two.
That's enough from us, what are some of your gripes in living smaller? As we age, don't we get smaller anyway?!

About Elevate Property Group

The team at Elevate focus on ethics, excellent customer service and ultimately, better relationships with clients - whether they be vendors, buyers, landlords, tenants or a myriad of other people involved in a property transaction.