UAE realty correction offers good bargains
The Cityscape Global Conference brought together more than 1,000 senior real estate professionals and government officials in Dubai.
Dubai - Price hike is expected by 2017, says industry executive
By Abdul Basit
Published: Tue 8 Sep 2015, 12:00 AM
Last updated: Wed 9 Sep 2015, 2:55 AM
The current correction is healthy for the future of the UAE property sector. Now is a perfect time to invest in the UAE as another price hike is expected in a year, an industry specialist said at the Cityscape Global Conference in Dubai on Monday.
"The correction also confirms real estate market maturity," Hesham Al Qassim, chief executive officer (CEO) of wasl Asset Management Group, said in his keynote address.
Al Qassim said the property market was being sustained by the strength of the UAE economy, with the current correction likely to last until the end of 2016.
"The correction in the UAE real estate market has come at the right time and its impact is being absorbed. In 2017, we will witness another hike and see growth again as we lead up to 2020. I predict that the real estate market will reach a new level and move upwards. It is the perfect time to invest, especially with the Expo 2020 ahead of us," Al Qassim said.
"There is a high demand for and need to build affordable housing to accommodate low and medium income individuals who will make their homes in the region for the long-term. This is especially needed in the Dubai market," he added.
During his presentation, Al Qassim outlined wasl Asset Management Group's role in the continued growth of Dubai, revealing that wasl properties owns and manages over 30,000 units across Dubai.
He said the company has 24 residential projects currently under development comprising 10,400 units, all of which will be completed between now and 2020.
Read: UAE realty a safe haven for buyers
"Our main vertical, real estate development and property management, is provided under wasl Properties, one of the top property management companies in Dubai. Today, we have 99 per cent of our inventory leased out and we have very high retention rates due to customer loyalty," Al Qassim said.
"We recently entered the freehold property market in order to add value and bring the wasl expertise to this important sector. We have announced four major projects this year, out of which three are freehold, with a total value of Dh40 billion," he added.
Read: Dubai property will return to growth path in 2016-17
"Following the win of the Expo 2020 bid, we announced that we will be building an extra 15 hotels from now until 2020, two of which are 5-star and the rest mid-range. We are eager to fill the gap in the market especially in the hospitality sector. We aim to have more than 10,000 rooms in our portfolio by 2020."