Published August 12, 2022  09:55 AM



One of the countries that draws the greatest FDI from abroad is the UAE. The real estate sector is crucial for luring new investment to the UAE. A high-value investment in UAE real estate may really help a non-resident buyer obtain a long-term UAE visa, if the requirements are satisfied.


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Federal Law No. 5 of 1985 is the main piece of legislation that deals with defining various types of property and addressing land ownership rights (Civil Code). The official land purchase and selling regulations of each Emirate, however, should be reviewed if you need any more information.


Who Is Qualified To Buy Real Estate In UAE


Anyone can buy real estate in the UAE, provided they meet certain standards.




Suggested Reads:  UAE VAT System,  Why Buy Property In Dubai,  Why You Should Invest In Real Estate

What Is A Property Transfer


According to the Civil Code, unless a property is registered officially, it cannot be transferred between parties. According to Dubai Law 7 of 2006, which governs the registration of property in the Emirate of Dubai, all activities connected to the creation, transfer, modification, or withdrawal of a property right are null and void unless recorded in the property register. The sole recognized document establishing a person’s property rights in Dubai is their official government title deed.


Property Transfer Procedure


For the transfer and registration of property in the UAE, the following procedures must be followed.


Due Diligence


The subject property is thoroughly investigated to confirm that the seller has full authority to sell it. The normal property due diligence process includes looking over the title records, physically inspecting the property, and, if possible, looking over the property register.


Contract of Sale


In a term sheet or memorandum of agreement that is signed by the buyer and seller, the essential elements of the contract that have been agreed upon by the parties are frequently spelled out. Term sheets frequently have expiration dates and are only valid up until the sale contract is completed. Additionally, the customary condition is that rigorous due diligence has been successfully completed.


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The sale agreement should contain information on the property, the buyer and the seller, the purchase price, the terms of payment, the law that will apply, the process for resolving disputes, and a termination clause. If the authorities have provided a sample sales contract, that model should be used along with an annexure explaining the extra clauses.


Certificate of No Objection Request (NOC)


The seller and you will then schedule a meeting at the developer’s office. It will be necessary to obtain and pay for a letter of consent (NOC) to transfer ownership. If there are no outstanding service bills on the property, the developer will then provide the NOC in exchange for payment.


Dubai Land Department for the Transfer of Ownership


The last step in legally purchasing a home in Dubai is to meet the seller at the Dubai Land Department’s office so that the transfer may take place after you’ve gotten the NOC.



Required Documents for Property Transfer




Types of Property

There are three main property categories to choose from when buying a residential property as an expat. Each of these properties in Dubai corresponds to a distinct kind of house or piece of land.



Freehold Property


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The ownership of the property is an unfettered, eternal right. Some areas are thought of as freehold land in the United Arab Emirates. A freehold properties are the most frequently sought-after ones by foreigners interested in investing in Dubai. Purchasing a freehold home or townhouse in Dubai also grants you land ownership.


Commonhold Property


In the United Arab Emirates, commonhold homes are primarily freehold homes. A common hold property, such as a condominium, an apartment, or a non-residential unit in a building, is only the unit that you are buying when you purchase it. Therefore, you receive a title deed and full ownership of the unit, but not of the land on which the apartment complex is situated.


If you own a commonhold property, you have the exclusive right to purchase, dispense with, or lease real estate for inheritance purposes. These buildings are typically owned by property or real estate developers.




Usufruct properties can be thought of as simple leases for long-term investments. An occupant has no authority to make changes to usufruct property. If ownership rights are not allowed, expats can choose these other options, such as usufruct property and musataha. The residential lease periods in the United Arab Emirates can last 10 to 99 years while commercial lease terms can last up to 50 years. Usufruct characteristics can also be inherited.


Non-Freehold Property


Non-freehold homes in Dubai are solely accessible to locals and citizens of the GCC. These Dubai localities do not allow foreign investors to buy real estate. The government has recently granted freehold status to a number of projects inside a few non-freehold zones, nevertheless.


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However, real estate investment in Dubai involves a large financial commitment. Some procedures and inspections must be completed before you can buy or sell a home in Dubai. A skilled lawyer that specializes in property in Dubai may offer crucial advice to ensure that the deal progresses without any legal difficulties.


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