Dubai: Property websites urged to link systems with authority to avoid fake listings, fines

Several property brokerages in Dubai and Abu Dhabi have been fined for violating local laws


Waheed Abbas

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Published: Wed 15 May 2024, 4:48 PM

Last updated: Wed 15 May 2024, 11:24 PM

Property listing websites in Dubai have been encouraged to integrate their systems with the Dubai Land Department (DLD) website to ensure that all the listings are valid and there are no fake ones.

Haider Khan, CEO of Bayut and Dubizzle Group Mena, said integrating the platform with DLD's system offers several significant benefits for all stakeholders in the UAE real estate market.

“Firstly, and perhaps most importantly, it will significantly increase trust amongst property seekers. Users can be confident that the properties they see are genuine and accurately reflect what's available in the market. This not only eliminates the frustration of encountering unavailable or outdated listings but ultimately saves valuable time and effort,” said Khan.

Haider Khan
Haider Khan

Secondly, he said it would streamline the process for real estate agents. “By allowing them to directly check their listings through the integration, agents can ensure their listings are accurate, reducing the risk of fines and ensuring a smoother experience for both agents and their clients."

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On February 14, 2024, the DLD asked real estate agents in Dubai to remove all the properties unavailable for sale or rent from their digital platforms within three days. They were also asked to remove the property advertisements that are no longer up for sale or rental.

Non-compliant agencies have been subjected to fines of Dh50,000 as a deterrent measure. Several property brokerages in Dubai and Abu Dhabi have been fined for violating local laws.

Bayut said it has trimmed down its inventory by over 26 per cent by eliminating a huge number of inaccurate listings.

Paul Kelly, operations director at Allsopp and Allsopp, said the DLD initiative to provide live API information to verify listings as well as remove listings once they have sold or let, "is music to the ears of buyers, tenants, investors and owners."

Paul Kelly
Paul Kelly

“From a property seeker point of view, it’s a huge step forward in eradicating the scourge of fake listings and all the frustrations that they bring to buyers and tenants, making a property search easier, more efficient and giving seekers more trust in what they are seeing online," said Kelly.

"From an owners’ perspective, their listings are getting fair coverage and exposure in the market, and not having to compete with fake listings, which often undercut on price and give the impression of a greater supply in the market,” he added.

Buyers demanding accurate listings

Importantly, property buyers are now increasingly demanding accurate and genuine information about listings.

“Property seekers demand accurate and genuine information and by rigorously checking the authenticity of property listings, we can do our part to ensure that users encounter genuine properties, effectively eliminating misinformation and fostering trust between users and the market. This not only streamlines the process for agents and seekers but also strengthens the integrity of the entire ecosystem,” Khan added.

The Bayut chief added that matching details such as permit numbers, property type, price and location ensure that the properties are genuine, providing users with authentic information and accurate prices.

“We have been proactively engaging with agencies and agents, emphasising the urgency and importance of taking corrective action,” he added.


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