How to rent an apartment in Dubai

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Any expat in Dubai can rent an apartment as UAE resident with few steps, but the important questions are:

How to find the best apartment for rent?

How to find cheap apartments for rent? And how much does it cost to rent an apartment in Dubai?

You might be looking for a cheap studio or furnished apartments for rent…

In this article, we’ll show you all steps to rent an apartment in Dubai starting from finding an apartment for rent and including all agency fees for renting and tenancy rules and regulations.

So what do you need to rent an apartment?

1. Finding an apartment

Whether you’re looking for apartments for rent long term, or just monthly, you’ll have to start by looking for it online through rent an apartment websites.

Search apartment listings in rent an apartment websites such as dubizzle, propertyfinder.ae, JustProperty.com, bayut, and even some Facebook pages.

In most of those platforms, you can filter the listings based on your needs such as number of rooms, the area , furnished or unfurnished, etc. The landlord or agent usually states the following clearly:

  • Rent Amount
  • Number of cheques over a rental year
  • Security deposit (usually 5% of the rent amount)
  • Furnished or unfurnished
  • When can the unit be viewed
  • Desired starting date
  • Any other conditions – your visa process should be done (you need an Emirates ID)

Now, make your shortlist of a few apartments that meet your requirements and contact the person mentioned in the listing, who will either be the agent or landlord.

We advise you to make a plan and narrow down your preferred properties three months in advance. The landlord or agent is usually more interested in you if you’re ready to move in within a month.

2. View the unit

Make sure you take note of the minute details when you visit.  (take photos if required.)

Here are a few tips to keep in mind before you rent an apartment:

  • Find the access to and from public transport (metro stations or bus stops), in case you don’t drive (You can refer to our Dubai Public Transport in Dubai to see maps of the metro stations and bus stops)
  • Security of the building (Is there a watchman always? Can anyone access the building at anytime without a question?)
  • Plan your transportation to your work whether it’s by metro, bus or car and check timing ( Usually, more than 10 minutes from public transport is considered a problem especially in summer days)
  • Noise in the area (for example: in winter time some construction works last 24 hours non-stop)
  • A good trick is to interact with the neighbors -if possible- to know if they face any challenges
  • Understand the AC system inside the apartment (central or separate for each room)
  • Check how’s the maintenance service. (Is it frequent and on time or it’s just mentioned and might be a hassle?)
  • Check all shared facilities in the building such as gym or swimming pool
  • Ask about the parking lot. (Would you have your own parking spot?)
  • In case you have visitors, guests or family coming, check for the rules if there are any.
  • Take a look around the apartment for any facilities nearby such as grocery, laundry, school, restaurants, Mall, etc.

3. Negotiate the rent

When you decide to rent the apartment, you may want to negotiate rent amount. While the landlord or agent may not go down on the rent amount, a common way to bargain is on the number of cheques. For example, sometimes the landlord may agree to reduce the total rent amount if you pay with fewer number of cheques.

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