There is no escaping the truth: The process of how to buy a house is complex and can be overwhelming, especially for first-time home buyers. You can simplify the process of purchasing property in Dubai and ensure smooth sailing by taking the time to research answers to big questions as well as planning ahead.
Step 1: Assess your finances
As a first-time homebuyer, you'll get to know the procedure inside and out by the end of the home-buying process. So, we recommend that the earlier you can wrap your head around your finances, the better.
Speak to a broker
Mortgage brokers work to find the correct mortgage with rates to suit your budget. They can show first-time homebuyers their best options. Their expert knowledge of the housing market means they are able to identify the best lenders and mortgage deals out there for first-time homebuyers.
Understand all fees involved
The real estate market in Dubai has one of the most robust regulations set in place to protect first-time homebuyers and sellers. This is why there are a number of upfront fees for purchasing properties in Dubai. These are payable by the buyer as well as the cost of the property.
These upfront fees for buying properties in Dubai can differ depending on the type of real estate (ready or off-plan) and who the buyer purchases from (a developer or a private seller). As a first-time buyer of property in Dubai, this can be daunting, so make sure that you have the information to hand when looking to buy a home.
Step 2: List your ideal property's features
A dream home, for a first-time homebuyer, is more about fulfilling wishes than meeting needs. So, when purchasing property in Dubai, don't be afraid to make a sizable wish list.
Rank each of these features in order of importance. While it's unlikely that a first-time homebuyer will find a home that will check off every single box on this list, this exercise will help you focus on properties that work for all of you.
Number of bedrooms
One big thing to consider when purchasing property in Dubai is figuring out how many bedrooms you truly need. Buying a home that is too small will leave you constantly trying to configure the space in order to make it work for you. In the same vein, buying a property that is too large will allow you to spread out but will clock up large costs.
If mowing the lawn and trimming trees aren't your idea of weekend fun and you don't have funds for a garden service, steer clear of large, high-maintenance homes with large plots. A smaller yard will cost the first-time homebuyer less to secure and will attract lower rates and utility payments.
Type of property
Residential properties come in a number of different styles. The right one really depends on how much space you need, your budget, and your preferences for upkeep and maintenance.
If you are looking to avoid difficult and expensive single-home issues such as security and the maintenance of large gardens, then buying a townhouse could be the right call for you.
However, remember that buying a townhouse is more complicated than buying a stand-alone home, as the future value of your property will depend not only on its individual location and condition but also on how well the development as a whole is managed.
Apartments are often a better option for first-time homebuyers because of their affordability. Apartments are also easier to rent out because they tend to appeal to younger people. Another excellent advantage of investing in an apartment is that these properties require less hands-on maintenance.
An apartment may be a cheaper option for a first-time homebuyer as opposed to a free-standing home; however, the fees may increase over a period of time, especially if you have amenities in your building such as a gym, concierge, or heated swimming pool.
Villas in Dubai range in size from around 1,500 square feet up to 46,000 square feet. They are in gated communities, which means that the villas are safe, secure, and often in close-knit communities.
While villa communities in Dubai can be centrally located, they usually have a calmer atmosphere than the glittering high-rise developments. They are set away from the busy highways and the air pollution that goes with them. This means that there is less noise, less hassle, and a peaceful living experience, something that first-time homebuyers often crave.
For first-time homebuyers, Dubai villa communities can offer the perfect setting for private and secure living. When you purchase a villa, you'll benefit from having your own space where you can create your own private oasis. These villas are the reason why people purchase property in Dubai.
Investigate potential areas
As a first-time home buyer, you must remember that when you buy a home, you are also buying into the neighborhood. Make sure it suits your lifestyle. That's why it's important to identify the wants and needs you have for your home and its location before making the commitment to home ownership.
Finding your real estate agent
It is wise for first-time homebuyers to establish which estate agents are active in the areas that they are looking at. They will also have a good idea of market-related property values for those who are interested in buying a home.
When you purchase property in Dubai, the reputation of the real estate agent is important. A real estate agent's knowledge of the homebuying process and the local market is key. You will get an idea of the agent's competencies by asking a few key questions, like the length of time they have been in the industry and questions about the law pertaining to property transactions.
Speak to your broker
Before you engage the services of a real estate agent, make sure that you contact the Holo team to see how much you can afford to spend.
Ask for recommendations
Ask your friends - as well as family members - if they are able to recommend a real estate agent with whom they've had a great experience in terms of purchasing property in Dubai and who guided them through the process of how to buy a house. Ideally, you'll want to connect with someone who has experience working with first-time homebuyers who are similar to you.
Check your candidates
Begin by examining their online presence. Check out their websites as well as their active social media accounts that they use to promote their listings. As a first-time homebuyer, you should take a look at their online reviews as well. Don't get worried about one or two negative reviews; more than that could be a red flag.
This is the first-time homebuyers opportunity to get a sense of the real estate agent's style as well as their experience in guiding people in terms of how to buy a home. Ultimately, you're looking for a real estate agent who is familiar with purchasing property in Dubai and understands your budget needs.
Have a look at how polished and professional their proposal is. The more effort they put into a presentation for you, the more effort they will put into presentations when they are working for you. You want someone who truly understands how to assist people in purchasing property.
The interview process will also give you a chance to find out the agents preferred method of communication in addition to their availability. If you're most happy texting and expect to visit homes after work during the week, you'll want an agent who is happy to do the same.
Trust your intuition
The knowledge and experience that an agent brings to the table when purchasing property is critical. So too is their ability to guide you smoothly through the property-buying process. Above all, go with a real estate agent who you trust and will feel comfortable with if the road to closing the property sale gets a little bumpy.
If everything checks out but you (as the first-time homebuyer) donbt get along with the agent, don't go with them. There are plenty of other real estate agents out there who will be happy to help you and who might be a better personality fit.
Understand the process
Buying a home is a massive step for a first-time homebuyer. As such, there can be a lot to consider from a legal point of view. Here we run through the typical legal steps that you will go through when buying a home.
How to make an offer
The real estate agent puts forward the offer that the first-time homebuyer makes to the seller. The seller will either accept the offer, decline it, or make a counter-offer.
If the seller makes a counter-offer, the first-time homebuyer can either accept, decline, or counter again. The negotiation continues in this manner until both parties agree or someone elects to walk away.
If an agreement is reached, the seller and first-time homebuyer have to sign the purchase agreement and enter into a contract. The contract's term serves as the sales period, and the appraisals, inspections, and others that are mentioned in the agreement will occur during the term of the contract.
This contract is called the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), is also referred to as Form F, and is one of the RERA real estate forms in Dubai. Form/Contract F is available on the Dubai Land Department's official website. Normally, the real estate agent will take care of getting the contract ready for the first-time homebuyers.
Once the contract is ready, both the buyer and the seller have to sign it in front of a witness (which is usually the agent).
When purchasing property in Dubai, an NOC is normally required from the developer, which gives clear title to the property as well as showing that all the service changes and utilities have been paid. In this case, the NOC shows that there is no objection from the developer to the first-time homebuyer purchasing the property.
Once the first-time homebuyer has obtained the NOC, they will need to meet the seller at the office of the Dubai Land Department (DLD) or the trustee office in order to effect the transfer.
The DLD will require the first-time homebuyer to pay the property price in the form of a managers cheque which should be made payable to the seller on the date of the transfer. Lastly, a brand new title deed will be issued in the name of the first-time homebuyer, and they will officially become property owners in Dubai.
Once the first-time homebuyer has made all payments to the developer, they will finally be in a position to take possession of their property and receive the keys or access cards. The developer will give you an appointment to sign the final paperwork in order to take possession of the property.
Ready to begin your home-buying process?
If you're ready to start looking for a home to buy, contact Holo to see what type of mortgage you are eligible for.
This blog is for educational purposes, but everyone's case is unique, and local guidelines and regulations may change. Our mortgage advisors can help you with any question you may have and have the latest advice. Get in touch.