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Ultimate Guide to Renting in Dubai



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Dubai hosts a large expat accommodation. From free standing villas to duplexes and shared apartments, expats find an array of options for renting in Dubai. But arranging a property rental in Dubai can be cumbersome and tiring. In wake of soaring Dubai rentals and imperfect information of part of expats, many would want to consider locating to nearby emirates of Sharjah or Abu Dhabi where ample home accommodation is available at lower costs.

Expats consider a number of factors while renting in Dubai. Rent, commute to office, availability of shops and commercial facilities, environment and noise, utilities and maintenance, car parking, sharing basis (if any) and others. With these in mind, let us give a short, handy and ultimate guide to renting in Dubai.  

Where to Begin?

The easiest way is to approach a real estate agent. By letting an agent registered with Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA), you can fairly reduce your losses related to imperfect information, and can leverage all paper and legal work to the agency.

Another way is to check out one of the several online classifieds where you can find listings like Dubai renting homes, property rental Dubai, Dubai rentals, and Renting homes Dubai, Renting office in Dubai and even car rentals in Dubai. The last way is to just drive through one of the many residential lanes and carry a look out for ‘To Let’ signs.

Leasing and Legal Issues

A major prerequisite for renting in Dubai is a valid residence visa. This may be provided by your employer or obtained once you have established a registered business concern in the Emirates. The landlord might also require a copy of your income and passport while signing up the lease. In most cases, a year’s contract is made, with some landlords wanting the entire year’s rent upfront. In case paying the full year rent is not possible, post-dated checks are handed over. Be sure of the maintenance, utility and other charges of your Dubai rental, as these are often not covered in your tenancy agreement and you will have to pay them separately. Make sure that all rental checks are named to the registered owner.

While drawing a contract, get an eye over the dues of water and electricity. This could be the receipts from DEWA, the Dubai Electric and Water Authority.


Once DEWA charges are cleared, the next few things the tenant expat should consider are chiller fees (for those who live in apartments), TV, internet and landline charges (most usually collected by DU or Etisalat), and gas supply charges (collected variably by each building or housing).

Finding the Right Dubai Rental Area

Depending on your needs and budget, Dubai rentals can vary from between 30k AED to 340k AED. The Arabian ranches, hosting 2 bed townhouses to 6 bed Hattan villas, are extremely popular with families. Marina is the next favorite, although it is a bit noisy and varies extensively in quality from tower to tower. Marina projects made by one of Trident, Emaar or Cayan builders are however most neatly kept.

Another top family hotspot in Dubai is Palm. Larger in size, Palm’s houses comes in all sizes and shades, both furnished and unfurnished.

For those looking for low (but quality) Dubai rentals, Downtown and Tecom are some of the better options. All big towers of Sheikh Zayed and area around Dubai Mall lie in this place. DIFC is also just minutes away.

Other most sought places lie in Al-Barsha, Diera, Greens, Jumeirah/Umm Sequim, Mirdiff and JBR. All these settlements are traditional living accommodations and come in really nice rentals for expats. 

Moving into a new place is not always easy. But a proper homework and a little know-how about expats can reduce your gamble in your favor. It is fairly common for expats to search for more and more information about Dubai rentals before they make a decision. In all cases, it is vital to establish your own knowledge about the accommodation so that you claim all benefits and liabilities of living without much blame.

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