The total value of real estate transactions recorded in Dubai last year reached over Dhs259bn, according to Dubai Land Department’s (DLD) annual report.
In terms of volumes, Dubai recorded 60,595 real estate transactions in 2016. Over 41,776 sales transactions took place, representing a total value of Dhs103bn, while the 15,000 mortgage transactions were valued at Dhs128bn.
In 2016, land sales and mortgage transactions represented a total value of Dhs193bn across 15,994 transactions. While mortgages brought in over Dhs114bn via 5,145 transactions, sales secured over Dhs55bn from 9,892 transactions. In terms of value, commercial land (already built on) represented 30 per cent of the total value in 2016.
DLD’s report also found that building sales recorded 2,626 transactions worth Dhs7bn, while units recorded 29,258 transactions worth Dhs51bn.
The report recorded 1,391 building mortgage transactions worth Dhs3.4bn, and 8,000 unit mortgage transactions valued at Dhs10.5bn.
The report found that real estate investment transactions for the year exceeded Dhs91bn from 55,928 investors.
The leading investors were UAE nationals, with over 7,000 individuals putting in nearly Dhs22bn.
About 12,768 GCC citizens contributed Dhs35bn, with 3,294 Saudi Arabian investors alone recording transactions worth Dhs8bn.
Arab investors from outside the GCC – 6,416 investors of 16 nationalities – contributed over Dhs12bn to Dubai’s real estate market last year, with Egypt ranking the highest in number of investors.
Internationally, the report found that Indian nationals rank highest in terms of both volume and value, 6,263 investors making Dhs12bn worth of property transactions. Pakistan and the UK followed.
DLD’s report identified Dubai’s top five sales areas for 2016, as Business Bay — which saw 3,508 investments worth Dhs6.2bn — followed by Dubai Marina, Jebel Ali 1, Burj Khalifa and Warsan 1.
In terms of value, the Burj Khalifa area secured over Dhs7bn across 2,097 transactions, followed by Dubai Marina, Business Bay, Jebel Ali 1 and Warsan 1.
Looking at land sales, Seeh Shuaib emerged as the most attractive area for investors in 2016, with the value of transactions reaching Dhs3bn across 1,684 transactions. It was followed by Al Yafra 3, Al Yafra 2, Al Hebeya 3 and Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Gardens.
In terms of building sales, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Gardens topped the list with 699 transactions valued at Dhs1.8bn, followed by Al Yalayis 1, Al Thunaya 4, Al Yalayis 2, and Nad Al Sheba 1.
Business Bay led the list for individual unit sales with 3,491 transactions valued at Dhs5.1bn, followed by Dubai Marina, Jebel Ali 1, Burj Khalifa and Warsan 1.
The report also found that Dubai Marina secured the highest number of mortgage transactions for individual units, with 1,107 mortgage transactions amounting to Dhs1.721bn.
DLD’s data also indicated the entry of 55 new developers into the real estate market, with the launch of 134 new projects worth over Dhs100bn, and the completion of 62 projects in 2016. DLD recorded over 410,000 lease contracts from different groups across Dubai last year.
DLD issued 695 licences over the course of 2016, and with 272 licences for sales brokerages and 223 licences for rental brokerages.
“There has been demand for other categories of licences in the field of real estate, most notably real estate development, the interim real estate development, property valuation services, rental services and property management to third parties, the purchase of land and properties, mortgage brokers and many others,” the report added.
Overall, it found that the number of brokers has increased to 5,933 over the past year, with 2,285 brokers’ offices active in 2016.
Sultan Butti Bin Merjen, DLD’s director general said that the report confirms that Dubai’s real estate market has “reached a new phase of maturity and stability”.
He predicted that the market will gain further momentum in 2017, signaling an upward trend for sustained growth in the run-up to Expo 2020.