UAE: How much mortgage can Dubai property buyers apply for?

Expert clarify about banks financing real estate down payment in the country


Waheed Abbas

Published: Mon 1 Aug 2022, 4:21 PM

Last updated: Mon 1 Aug 2022, 4:58 PM

As interest rates rise in the UAE, property buyers are increasingly opting for cash purchases rather than mortgages. According to the latest Betterhomes report, the UAE has seen a 1.75 per cent increase in interest rates in the first half of 2022. It said around 31 per cent of property purchases were financed through mortgages in H1 2022 as against 36 per cent in the same period last year.

Mortgage lending is readily available to foreign residents in Dubai, with over twenty financial institutions currently offering over 2,500 different mortgage products/rates.

Andrew Cummings, Partner - Head of Prime Residential, Middle East, Knight Frank, says for first purchases, the maximum lending amount on properties over Dh5 million is 70 per cent of the property value, which increases to 80 per cent for properties with a value below Dh5 million.

Andrew Cummings
Andrew Cummings

Some banks also provide fee financing, meaning borrowers can finance up to an additional 5 per cent to fund transfer/agent fees. For second purchases/investment properties, the maximum lending amount is 60 per cent, and for under-construction properties is 50 per cent, regardless of the property value.

Do UAE banks finance the down payment as well? Cummings says technically, no.

“Personal loans are available as a form of unsecured credit to cover funding gaps, however, the interest rate charged is typically higher than mortgage rates, and the repayment period is shorter, therefore, it is not the most efficient/cost-effective route to funding the down payment. Also, personal loans in UAE will show on your credit report and therefore will be included in your mortgage affordability calculation, meaning your maximum available mortgage lending amount will be reduced."


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