Charting a New Course: Dubai’s Real Estate Market Seeks Truth in Advertising


For an extended period, Dubai's real estate sector has faced challenges with the accuracy and reliability of online property advertisements, particularly on property portals. Despite stringent regulations from the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA) directed at real estate agents, the digital nature of property portals—as arenas for resale and leasing—has led to creative interpretations of RERA's advertising guidelines. This situation, although beneficial for the real estate advertising portals' revenue streams, involves a complex interplay of responsibilities among all market participants. It's essential to recognize the collective role in this context, rather than attributing blame to any single party or denying any involvement in the issue of less accurate online property advertisements.

The consequences of permitting a multitude of less reliable property listings on real estate portals are varied and significant:

  • Reputation challenges for some portals due to listings that are not available or inaccurately presented by real estate agents.
  • A distorted perception of market supply, with an apparent abundance of properties for sale or rent that does not accurately reflect compliance with RERA regulations.
  • Discrepancies for developers who discover their properties listed at prices not aligned with their actual valuations.
  • Diminished returns for real estate companies whose legitimate listings compete with a multitude of other listings, some of which may not adhere to the required standards.
  • Investors looking to sell or lease properties face increased competition from listings that may undercut or overshadow their offerings.
  • Committed real estate agents, who follow the guidelines set by RERA and the Dubai Land Department (DLD) diligently, find themselves at a disadvantage compared to those who might not adhere as strictly to these standards.
  • The accuracy of market statistics and performance indicators is compromised, with services like DXBinteract unable to accurately reflect the true absorption rate of listed units.
  • Identifying genuine market trends becomes challenging, as a significant portion of the listings might not represent unique or accurately priced properties.

Revolutionizing Transparency: Dubai's Real Estate Market Takes Bold Steps to Enhance Online Listing Integrity

In light of these challenges, recent dialogues with RERA's management have highlighted a resolute commitment to improving the situation. An immediate measure is the revision of the use of developer's marketing No Objection Certificates (NOC) for advertising individual units, which will address a large fraction of the listings not in line with RERA regulations. This change is expected to significantly reduce the prevalence of less accurate listings. Basically, real estate agents will no longer be able to use Marketing NOC issued by developers for a certain project, to advertise individual units for sale.

Furthermore, the DLD is set to digitalize the process for obtaining Marketing Permits for advertising rental properties in Dubai. This move is anticipated to validate approximately 60% of online rental ads, ensuring they meet the necessary criteria. While these steps are part of a broader, ongoing effort to enhance the integrity of online listings, they are forecasted to eliminate a substantial number of the less reliable listings, thus increasing the overall credibility of online real estate advertisements for all involved stakeholders.

I am honored to contribute to this important shift towards greater transparency and integrity in Dubai's real estate market. This market, rich with opportunity, deserves our utmost effort and dedication to ensure it remains a trustworthy and vibrant marketplace for all, now and in the future.

I urge all Dubai real estate agents, CEOs, real estate portals, and all market stakeholders to embrace and support this transformative initiative. It is imperative that we collectively take immediate and decisive actions to ensure a smooth and healthy transition towards a more transparent and reliable market.

Additionally, I extend my deepest appreciation and gratitude to the dedicated team at the Dubai Land Department (DLD) and the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA). Their unwavering effort and proactive approach are instrumental in enhancing the market's integrity, making it a better and more trustworthy marketplace for everyone involved.


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