Going off-plan: Rising Sales in Dubai Looks Like a Trend for 2020


The off-plan segment is seeing a boost from aligning factors and will likely surge next year, says the CEO of Appello Real Estate.

As we approach a new year and a new decade, the outlook for the off-plan segment of the Dubai property market is looking distinctly bright – despite a generally flat 2019 for the market overall.

With a surge in off-plan sales in recent months, it seems there’s something in the air, says Naval Vohra. After ten years working at the leading edge of the UAE real estate industry, he believes recent events have converged to give off-plan developments a much needed shot in the arm – and has witnessed the upward movement in his own Dubai agency.

“It has been a bit of a mixed fortunes kind of year, but the dynamics of the market have recently shifted, and it is having a huge impact on off-plan sales – at Appello we are seeing this each day,” said Vohra. “I think these three factors – the UAE Central Bank getting rid of the seventy-year age limit for the last mortgage repayment in order to ease mortgage loan requirements for customers of banks and finance companies; the lifting of the 20 percent cap on real estate lending for banks; and the excitement of finally approaching Expo 2020 Dubai – have all come together to create a bit of magic.

“And with plenty of bargains around and enticing payment plans in chic new projects, Dubai’s off-plan segment is once more looking very appealing to global consumers.”

Vohra said there are good sales for off-plan properties in beachfront communities such as Palm Jumeirah, Emaar Beachfront (an exclusive new residential community in Dubai Harbour), and Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR). Indeed, a newly launched project in JBR by Dubai Holding – La Vie – is already close to being fully sold, which is a positive indicator.

“Another trend is off-plan townhouses are selling well in Dubailand and Dubai Hills Estate. Emaar has also launched a new community called The Valley which looks like a townhouse community to watch closely in the coming year.”

Vohra added: “Even if project launches reduce in number in coming years to manage the supply issue, which has been discussed greatly, I still see the off-plan segment as heading towards ever better times. Highly attractive house prices are forecast to continue for a while and with feasible payment plans – some going well beyond handover – and other great incentives, developers are opening the door for more people to come into this space.”

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