Most Important Considerations When Renting an Apartment in Dubai


Many individuals inexperienced with leasing an apartment might be unaware of the various things to consider before signing a lease agreement. Thousands of expats have experienced difficulty moving to the UAE only because they were uninformed of basic rental laws that are understood amongst many of Dubai's residents. This article aims to improve your moving experience to Dubai by listing the important concerns before signing a lease agreement.

Stay Within Your Budget

When searching for an apartment, know your budget and make sure to rent an apartment within your monetary range. Budget wisely as renting an apartment in Dubai is expensive. Leasing an apartment in Dubai includes additional fees: deposit, real estate agent fee, internet and utilities. Confirm if the landlord is responsible for all maintenance services. If the tenant is responsible for maintenance services to the apartment, have an idea of potential maintenance costs.

Examine the Apartment's Condition

Take your time analyzing the apartment's condition before renting. Take notes during the apartment viewing of any damages that require repair. Prospective tenants should examine the unit thoroughly. Turn on the faucets, shower and kitchen sink. Inspect for leaks and any interruptions in water fluidity. Confirm the doors lock and unlock and the windows function properly. Do the lights work? How many electric sockets does the apartment have?  Note any damages and request all repairs be completed before moving into the apartment. The repair details must be specified in the contract.

Utility Costs

Utility costs range in different communities and buildings. Compare utility costs when visiting apartments. Enquire regarding utility costs with your real estate agent.

Featured Amenities

Does the rental agreement feature a designated parking garage for tenants?  Is parking assigned to each tenant or a first come, first serve basis? Do friends and family visiting need to pay extra to park? Many apartment buildings in Dubai also feature a swimming pool, fitness facility and 24-hour security.

Choosing a Certified Real Estate Agent

Before proceeding with the viewing, ask for the agent’s business card to confirm that he/she is RERA certified and legally practicing real estate in Dubai. Be aware of freelance agents who are illegally practicing real estate in Dubai. Any legal disputes or issues with the apartment cannot be taken to court since you worked with a freelance agent.

Lease Agreement Details

Read the contract agreement thoroughly before signing the leasing agreement. The contract is a mandatory agreement that should define the term of the contract, amenities, listed costs, payment method and what maintenance responsibilities belong to the tenant.Make sure to understand the entire contract. Ask extensive questions to the landlord or real estate agent before signing the rental agreement.

Can a Landlord Legally Increase Your Rent

The Real Estate Regulatory Agency requires landlords to provide a 90 days notice regarding any revisions to the rent contract, terminating the contract or increasing the rent amount. Tenants should document when a landlord requests to increase the rental amount. Tenants can legally decline to pay the increased rental amount if the landlord did not provide a 90 days notice. Tenants should review the contract entirely to confirm no additional changes were made in the contract. Do not hesitate to contact the Rent Disputes Settlement Centre at the Dubai Land Department(DLD) if a landlord has not provided a 90 days notice to increase rent.

Ask Neighbors for Feedback on The Building

Prospective tenants can receive the most valuable feedback from tenants currently residing in the building. Ask tenants how their experience has been and how long they have lived in the building. Current tenants have no reason not to provide honest feedback on their experience.

Rental Additional Costs

The real estate agent's commission and rental security deposit must be paid upon signing the agreement.  The real estate agent’s fee and  apartment security deposit typically total 5% of annual rental amount. The security deposit will be returned to the tenant upon the completion of the rental contract.

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