Fifa World Cup visitors are now buying property in Dubai; here's why

These decisions aren't spur-of-the-moment, property experts believe that investors have "realized the potential of a long-term investment in the UAE"



by

Nasreen Abdulla

Published: Mon 19 Sep 2022, 11:48 AM

Last updated: Tue 27 Sep 2022, 2:58 PM

Several football lovers, who are looking to base themselves in Dubai for the Qatar World Cup, are choosing to buy property in the city. This is strengthening the already robust real estate market of Dubai, according to experts.

“Dubai’s real estate investment throughout the country is projected to exceed Dh300 billion by the year-end,” said Arash Jalili, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Unique Properties. “With Dubai and the entire UAE being recognized among the leading destinations across the globe, and several real estate developments rising up post-pandemic, the property market is poised to flourish in the short- and long-term.”

However, none of these purchases are a spur of the moment decisions, according to another property expert. “These are people who have realized the potential of a long-term investment in the UAE,” said Shabna Ibrahim, a property consultant from A1 Properties. “They have done their research and they know that buying a property in Dubai is going to give them long-term return. So, they decide that they will buy an apartment or villa here, stay there when they visit here for the World Cup and then rent it out the rest of the time.”

The Fifa World Cup, which occurs only once every four years, has historically been a great boost to the economy of its hosts. Qatar is no different, with the country expecting $17 billion to be injected into its economy. However, due to limited accommodation in the peninsula, UAE and other neighbouring countries stand to benefit immensely from the event.

“We have been getting a lot of calls for short term rentals from the people who are attending Qatar World Cup,” said Jeff Raju Kuruvilla, Sales Manager at Positive Properties. “Several of these clients have already asked me details of new projects and the process of investing in property in Dubai. It is clear that they are very interested in investing here.”

Clients of High Net Worth

Due to the nature of the event and its price points, most of those who will attend the Qatar World Cup are High Net Worth Individuals (HNWI), according to Jalili.

“Finals tickets for the 2018 World Cup ranged from Dh600 to Dh4,000; in comparison, the cheapest QWC finals ticket for non-Qatar residents start upwards of Dh2,200 and can cost up to Dh6,000,” he said. “The pandemic and people’s desire to return to normalcy can be attributed as factors that have caused these price spikes. For this reason, HNWIs will likely represent a large majority of those in attendance.”

This translates into the kind of property they are looking at too. “With HNWIs classified as people who have between $1 million and $5 million of fortune, luxury properties are typically their purchase preference,” added Jalili.

The average age of homeowners in the UAE has reduced in recent times. “The average age of first-time property buyers has dropped from early 40s to mid 30s,” said Ibrahim. “Their age plays a role in the areas that they look to invest in as well. Younger buyers prefer areas that they see as happening like Dubai Marina, Business Bay and Downtown with metro access. However, the seasoned investors are ready to take a bigger risk and invest in areas that are not fully developed like Dubai South as they are looking at capital appreciation. Dubai South has been extremely popular with our international clients in recent times.”

Investing in Dubai

One of the major reasons why international visitors are opting to buy when they come to visit Dubai is due to the reputation of the city worldwide.

“Dubai has positioned itself as a really place to invest in and a lot of people are ready to put their money here because they know it is a secure investment,” said Ibrahim.

Some other factors also influence their decision, according to Jalili. “These individuals often purchase luxury developments due to their lavish infrastructure and appeal as assets for long-term investment,” he said. “In addition to the prospect of property as an asset, investment in the UAE is increasingly appealing with the country’s Golden Visa program, new regulations that will enable dual citizenship, and favourable tax advantages that few other countries offer."

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