Hello and welcome to our first Better Informed of 2020.
Today we’re releasing our 2019 Betterhomes market report and infograph and it’s packed full of data both from Betterhomes and the DLD on stats and figures about what happened in the property market here in Dubai in 2019.
One of the biggest trends we saw in 2019 was an increase in sales transactions. There were roughly 40,000 properties sold and that was up a healthy 20% from 2018. That was mainly driven by buyers realising the value to be found in today’s prices; prices which in 2019 did continue to soften, falling roughly 10%. Crucially though, that rate of decline and the fall in prices did slow considerably in the second half of the year.
So what were people buying last year? Well, off-plan still dominates the market. Roughly 58% of all transactions last year were off-plan compared to 42% in the secondary market. The affordable sector, in particular, did very well last year. We saw 51% of all sales were studios and 1-beds and just over 40% of all transactions were under 1 million Dirhams. So, under 1 million Dirhams seems to be the sweet spot for most investors last year. We also did, however, see an increase in transactions in the luxury market. There was a 60% increase in the sale of villas with 6-beds and more in 2019 vs. 2018.
So who is buying at the moment? Well if we look at the figures from Betterhomes, we found that 69% of our buyers in 2019 identified themselves as investors rather than end-users. Cash buyers were still in the predominance, 67% of all of our buyers were cash buyers compared to 33% mortgage buyers which were on the par with the previous year.
In leasing we saw activity increase by 9% in 2018 however with 38,000 new properties hitting the market as new supply in 2019, we did see that have an impact on rental prices, with rental prices falling double digits across Dubai.
We saw the majority of handovers in JVC, Mohammed bin Rashid City, Business Bay, and Town Square and all of those communities saw property rents dropping over 10% in the second half of 2019. So, landlords crucially are having to work hard to attract tenants and hold onto tenants and we’re seeing more flexibility.
One of the growing trends we’ve seen within the rental market is flexibility on cheques and 54% of all leases in 2019 were for 4 cheques or more.
There is lots more information on the infographic and on our website www.bhomes.com where you can get in touch with us to learn more about the current property market.