Investors flock to buy Dubai realty in Ramadan

The emirate recorded 4,804 property sales worth Dh9.99 billion, the highest number of transactions in the month of Ramadan. The number of transactions in Ramadan 2021 grew by 211 per cent compared to 2020 and 57 per cent compared to 2019.

Dubai property market to improve on higher-than-expected demand, says Morgan Stanley

Dubai’s real estate market continued its upward trend during the holy month of Ramadan despite reduced working hours as investors flocked to purchase apartments and villas amid fears of a price increase in the coming weeks.

The emirate recorded 4,804 property sales worth Dh9.99 billion, the highest number of transactions during Ramadan. The number of transactions in Ramadan this year grew by 211 per cent compared to 2020 and 57 per cent compared to 2019, according to data released by Property Finder Group on Tuesday.

Earlier, the emirate recorded the previous highest Ramadan sales in 2015 when it saw 3,870 property sales transactions and since then the number of transactions in the holy month have averaged around 2,500 every year. Ramadan 2020, being in the midst of the pandemic and in the lockdown last year, saw only 1,543 sales transactions.

“There was always a myth that the real estate market slowed down during Ramadan and a few years ago we dove into the data and debunked that myth. Ramadan has proven to be a strong time for real estate sales and as we can see this year the record breaking trends since the ease in lockdown continued during Ramadan,” according to Lynnette Abad Sacchetto, director of Research & Data at Property Finder Group.

Realty bottom out

Imran Farooq, chief executive, Samana Developers, said Dubai market has now bottomed out, showed it maximum resilience and finally achieved boom.

“This is at the back of excellent handling of Covid-10 crisis, highly successful country-wide vaccination drive, and commitment of His Highness Shaikh Muhammed Bin Rashid, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, of converting a crisis into an opportunity,” Farooq told Khaleej Times.

Historic 4,804 transactions valued at Dh9.99 billion in Ramadan 2021 reflects Dubai’s attraction as a magnet for investors as soon as Covid-19 related travel and business restrictions were eased. Samana Developers has been optimistic about Dubai real estate market has, time and again, been predicting similar outlook, he said.

“Investors gained from the low trend caused by Covid-19 and invested into future for higher return on investment when the crisis are over. They have now seen the results,” he added.

Property prices picking up

In another positive development on Tuesday, Morgan Stanley also said Dubai property prices are rising for the first time in six years amid higher demand and a slowdown of project launches since 2017.

Citing research from consulting firm ValuStrat, the US investment bank said there was a 1.2 per cent month-on-month rise in residential values in April, the index’s highest monthly growth rate in seven years.

“Demand for residential real estate has picked up faster than expected, amidst a wave of government reforms over the past 12 months, attractive mortgage rates, and a shift in demand patterns due to Covid-19,” according to Morgan Stanley research note.

Property firms earnings up

As the property prices are heading towards stability since fourth quarter of 2020, the listed companies have reported better earnings this year.

Emaar Properties recorded an eight per cent growth in net profit to Dh657 million for the first quarter 2021 compared to the net profit of Dh609 million during the same period in 2020.

Emaar Development posted 20 per cent growth in first-quarter net profit at $213 million as property sales rose two-fold to Dh5.88 billion due to increasing demand from the investors and end-users in the UAE. Morgan Stanley upgraded Emaar Development to ‘overweight’ and raised its price target by 37 per cent to Dh3.7.

Union Properties, another listed Dubai developer, reported profit of Dh5.6 million for the quarter ending March 31, versus a loss of Dh121.9 million a year ago.

Some developers see recovery taking longer. Damac on Sunday reported a widening first-quarter loss of Dh189.6 million, versus a loss of Dh106.1 million a year ago.

“The market is slowly recovering from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and its impact on various industries, particularly travel and tourism. I still strongly believe that recovery will take at least 12-24 months,” Damac Properties chairman Hussain Sajwani said in a bourse filing.

Ramadan sales breakup

Out of all the sales that took place this year during Ramadan, 60 per cent of all transactions were for secondary/ready properties and 40 per cent were for off-plan properties.

Moreover, the off-plan market transacted 2,019 properties worth a total of Dh3.09 billion and the secondary market transacted 2,785 properties worth a total of Dh6.89 billion during the holy month of Ramadan.

In the villas/townhouses sector, 17.3 per cent of all sales in Ramadan 2021 took place in Mohammed bin Rashid City, followed by Dubai Hills Estate (9.5 per cent), Dubai Land (8.8 per cent), Nad Al Sheba (4.8 per cent) and Arabian Ranches 3 (4.4 per cent).

Looking at apartments, 10.1 per cent of all sales transactions took place in Jumeirah Village Circle followed by Jumeirah Lakes Towers (9.5 per cent), Dubai Marina (8 per cent), DownTown Dubai (7.1 per cent) and Al Jaddaf (5.9 per cent).

There were four luxury, high valued property sales over Dh50 million that took place in Ramadan 2021. Three of them were on Palm Jumeirah ranging from Dh70 million to Dh105 million and one of them took place in Emirates Hills valued at Dh72.3 million.


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