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I often get asked the question “what kinds of properties are best for holiday homes rental in Dubai in order to achieve the highest occupancy rates?” The answer is relatively simple. There are three key components that are most desirable: location, interiors & price.

Location

Whether your holiday home model is focused on daily bookings or a minimum of 1 month and above, ultimately guests tend to prefer a more central location for short term rentals. While the property itself should ideally be a quiet hideaway, the location should provide an upbeat atmosphere. The number one up-sell for any property is access to transportation.  Almost 80% of guests will ask if the metro station is within walking distance. Here are some more important factors that should increase the appeal of the property’s location when making your investment and when marketing your property:

  • Beautiful views
  • Natural light
  • A private balcony
  • A supermarket within walking distance
  • Cafés and restaurants close by
  • A pedestrian-friendly neighborhood
  • Taxis available from the street
  • Easy access to main highways
  • Car parking available for 1-2 cars
  • Landscaped surroundings

If you are renting out an apartment, then another location feature that could be attractive to guests is the building’s facilities. Guest’s top requests tend to include the following:

  • Outdoor swimming pool: ideally one that is open-air and unobstructed from sunlight as most guests using the pool like to sunbathe
  • Sauna/steam room
  • Children’s play area
  • Well-equipped gym
  • 24-hour security guard in the building lobby


Overall when selecting a particular apartment building in Dubai, the most important factors to ensure are that the building is well-maintained, cleaned daily, with garbage chutes managed and no issues with bad smells or pests.

The main areas in Dubai that I would recommend investing in properties in, to obtain maximum occupancy rates for short-term rentals are:

  • Downtown Dubai
  • DIFC
  • Business Bay
  • Greens & Views
  • JLT
  • Dubai Marina
  • Blue waters
  • The Palm
  • JBR


Do speak to an agent before purchasing to ensure that the title deed of the desired property is listed as residential only, as you will not be able to legally list your property as a holiday home if the title deed states it is a serviced apartment or hotel apartment.

Interiors

Your property’s interior can really assist you in achieving the highest occupancy rates. It’s all about the right colour scheme and comfortable furniture that looks appealing. A lot of my clients were under the impression that furniture must be costly to look good, however, this is really not the case. Luckily in Dubai, there is a wide variety of furniture shops to suit a range of budgets.

For smaller budgets, my suggestion is to look at Pan Emirates, Home Centre, United Furniture and Ikea. Make sure you view and try out the items in-store prior to purchasing them. Ensure that the sofa is comfortable and big enough for an adult to lay down on, you could also opt for a sofa bed as an up-selling point. Ensure that the bed is sturdy and the mattress is comfortable or you may need to invest in a mattress topper. Do spend slightly more money on these two items as it will be worth it in the long run. This option will take a little more time and effort however it will be lighter on your bank account.  You may also look into buying high-quality second-hand items like dining tables, TV units and other furniture from Dubizzle, keeping in mind that you will have to organize pick up and drop off transportation.

For mid-range budgets, my advice is to approach Indigo living or Kiana Interiors. Both will assist you with the furniture selections to fit your budget and they have a great range of options. For luxury bespoke fit-outs, Zen interiors will do it all for you, resulting in a 5-star hotel room vibe.

Always use a neutral colour palette as this is most welcoming for your guests and remember to accessorize with a pop of colour.

My top tips for an excellent interior are:

– Include a feature wall or wallpaper in the main rooms

– Add textured rugs to fill a room

– Invest in some modern and bright light fittings

– Ensure the curtains completely blackout light in the bedroom

– Keep the living room light and airy

Guests usually do use the kitchen, so be generous with cooking utensils, mugs, pots, and pans. Another special touch could be a coffee machine, food processor or blender. The smaller touches matter the most.

My final tip for your interior is to ensure a professional photographer carries out a photo shoot of the property and facilities, and include a descriptive property write up as this will boost the chances of your property being booked.

Price

Even a perfectly located property with top-notch interiors won’t get many bookings if the price isn’t right. Make sure you visit all of your local online property portals to see what other apartments are being rented for in the same area and make sure the price you are requesting is comparable. The bottom line is – since guests will only be staying for a short time, they will most likely select the cheapest property within the same area. Make sure you change your prices to reflect the peak and off-peak seasons, including the higher demand around different events in the area of your property. Sometimes dropping the price even by a fraction can help to boost bookings.

The key advice to remember when turning a property into a holiday home is to put yourself in your guests’ shoes while selecting the location, furniture, and the price. Ask yourself “would I be happy and comfortable paying a daily rate while staying here?” With ample 4 and 5-star hotels available in Dubai, guests here choose holiday homes as an alternative to hotel accommodation as it allows them to feel more at home in the city that they are visiting. Be sure to take into consideration their comfort while assessing your expenses in order to achieve the highest returns.

On a final note, in order to expedite and simplify the process, you will need an all in one-holiday homes operator that is fully licensed by the department of tourism and commerce marketing, has extensive market knowledge, 5-star guest reviews and a good reputation in the market to guide you on the right path to achieve above 90% occupancy rates.

We wish you the best of luck in renting out your property!

If you’d like to list your property for short term rental with Betterhomes, visit our Holiday homes page.


Alisha Azzopardi
Head of Holiday Homes




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