|26 February, 2020

Off-plan or second hand? Buying preferences of Dubai's investors revealed

New study reveals what high-end and affordable buyers really want

View to Dubai JBR beach in Dubai Marina district. Image used for illustrative purpose.

View to Dubai JBR beach in Dubai Marina district. Image used for illustrative purpose.

Getty Images/Marcutti

Dubai’s investors have varied tastes, and when they go property hunting, those with deep pockets prefer off-plan projects, while those in the middle or lower end of the scale would go for buildings in the secondary market.

Or, at least, this was the trend observed in Dubai last year.

Off-plan sales

According to a report from Data Finder, the real estate platform for Property Finder Group, popular buildings in the off-plan market last year were luxury projects priced above 1 million UAE dirhams, while the most favoured buildings in the secondary market were in the affordable bracket, priced below 1 million UAE dirhams.

Luxury segment

Among the projects monitored, the Se7en City project by Seven Tides in Cluster Z of Jumeirah Lakes Towers (JLT) registered 528 off-plan transactions in 2019, making it Dubai’s most popular off-plan building based on sales transaction volume.

Seven Tides’s project was followed by Emaar’s 78-storey Grande tower in the Opera District in Downtown Dubai. The building registered 446 off-plan transactions in 2019.

Emaar Properties’ Creek Edge Tower 1 in Dubai Creek Harbour registered 388 off-plan transactions, while Burj Royale in Downtown Dubai accounted for 350 off-plan sales, rounding up the third and fourth most popular off-plan buildings in 2019.

Other popular off-plan projects in 2019 were Al Mazaya Holding’s Q-Zone in Queue Point, Liwan (328 transactions), Damac Properties’ Reva Residences in Business Bay overlooking the Dubai Water Canal (299 deals), Deyaar’s Bella Rose in Dubai Science Park (253 deals) and Emaar’s Palace Residences in Dubai Creek Harbour (237 deals).

Damac Properties also put up a good show, with two of its off-plan projects ramping up sales. The developer’s Paramount Tower Hotel and Residences in Business Bay accounted for 230 deals, while its Aykon City Tower C in Business Bay registered 227 off-plan transactions. 

‘Affordable’ category

Moving into the affordable segment of the secondary market, the building which registered the highest volume of sales was Al Khail Heights 9a-9b with 213 transactions, said the report.

“What is interesting to point out in this data is how the popular buildings in the secondary market were all in the very affordable range while in the off-plan segment, the majority of the popular buildings were in the luxury market,” says Lynnette Abad, Director of Data and Research, Property Finder.

Danube Properties’ Starz apartment project in Al Furjan did considerably well in the secondary market, as it approached completion. Starz Tower 2 accounted for 204 transactions, while Tower 1 registered 189 deals.

The First Group’s Sky Central Hotel in Barsha Heights (135 transactions) and Royal Amwaj Residences North on the Palm Jumeirah (133 deals) rounded up the top five most popular buildings in the secondary market in Dubai last year.

Other buildings that saw a lot of ready units that changed hands in the secondary market in 2019 were Damac Properties’ Ghalia Constella in Jumeirah Village Circle (113 transactions), National Properties’ Eden Apartments in Motor City (108 deals), The Atria in Business Bay (97 deals), South Residences in JVC District 13 (74 transactions) and Bluewaters Residences Building 2 on Meraas’ Bluewaters Island (73 deals).

(Writing by Atique Naqvi; Editing by Cleofe Maceda)

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