When it comes to the process of buying or investing in property, there are many tasks with short timelines that require urgent action.

If trust issues or doubts are preventing you from using a property developer or an agent, you can choose to go ahead on your own. But first, make sure that you have answered these questions:

• Can you commit to doing background checks on properties, locations, previous track records, and potential returns?

• Can you make sure there are no outstanding mortgages on the property you are thinking of buying?

• Are you sure that the owner has a clear title deed, or if there are existing tenants and parking space(s)?

• Have you considered all the charges that the Government requires you to pay?

• Do you know the required timelines you are supposed to comply with?

• Have you allocated enough time for each task?

• Are you confident that the information provided online is up to date, with the developments today?


Property developer

  • Property developers can be an attractive option for buying or investing in property, if you have a specific property or development in mind. Be aware that this mostly covers off plan projects/units that have not yet been bought by anyone. Because once a property gets sold (transferred/completed) it is no longer in the primary market and therefore, not in the developer’s hands. It then would (usually) be listed by an agent, appointed by the property owner.
  • While the total cost of an off plan property can be higher (or lower) than an older property in the secondary market, the developer can offer attractive payment terms. For example, these can include payment options like paying 25% of the total cost and then moving in immediately. The remaining amount can be paid through instalments linked to various timeframes.
  • There is no commission fee to pay (and sometimes no or half) transfer fee(s); the, developers usually pay the agent’s fee when they bring clients to the development.
  • Research the track record of the property developer. Aim for big names, with proven successes and a track record. Read up on their profile, past projects, their completion rates, and the valuation of their properties.
  • You will have limited options to choose from, as the developer will only show THEIR current properties. In other words, you will be cut off from 80% of the real estate market.
  • A developer will not show you another comparable property that is available with a different developer. You will have to choose from only their own properties.
  • The advice you get from a property developer can be biased as they have a vested interest to promote their own projects.
  • There is no guarantee that the value of the property will appreciate. You can go by the track record and past performance of the developer, but it is not a sure thing. Some developers inflate their prices, which the uneducated can fall prey to…
  • The back and front-end offices of developers are prone to a high rate of turnover. For clients, that means a lack of a rapport with the agent whom they deal with, and requirements not being made clear.


Real estate agency/ agent

  • When working with a real estate agency, make sure it is a trusted and respected brand. We recommend to do some background research, with a special focus on their regulatory certification (‘RERA’ or ‘Real Estate Regulatory Agency’) as well as their reviews. That will give you a better idea of how previous clients responded to their service.
  • An established, proven and successful agency that’s respected in the market, will give you advice on what common obstacles and pitfalls to avoid. For example, they can guide you whether it’s a ‘buyers’ market’ or whether you’re better off holding onto your finances and waiting for a more opportune time.
  • Agencies network extensively and partner with a lot of property developers. This gives them access to upcoming projects before they’re announced on the market. They can better explain the project completion timelines, and how certain properties might appreciate or go down in coming years. The scope and range of developers mean that you get a true (and fair) indication of the market at that particular time.
  • After factoring in the agent fees, transfer fees, the difference in price between the primary and secondary markets etc, the total cost to the client, in both cases, is very similar. Slight differences in price, attractive offers, and more variety are some areas that ultimately determine the client’s decision.
  • Also be aware that you only pay on the successful completion of a deal. Your satisfaction, therefore, matters to the agent.
  • If a project is not available in one community, a competent and customer focused real estate agency, can hand you over to another agent in a different community (within the same brand), who can meet your requirements.
  • Agencies make it their job to keep tabs on the latest bank offerings such as mortgages and loans, as well as currency exchange companies. They have contacts with the right partners to get in touch to resolve issues speedily. They (usually) partner with conveyancers, to ensure a speedy and smooth transfer of property for their clients.
  • And last but not least, a real estate agency will dedicate a property consultant/ agent (who should be a local expert) who will guide you throughout the property sale process from start to finish; this results in a more intense and focussed one on one consultation to fully cover your property needs.


Now that you know all the facts, if you have decided to put your trust in an established, respected agency, why not give us a call? Our agents are enthusiastic, dynamic and dedicated professionals who live and breathe the communities they operate within. All are RERA (Real Estate Regulatory Agency) qualified and certified real estate brokers, who seek to ensure the best price and quality for their clients. Don’t just take our word for it, have a look what our clients are saying about us.

Simon Baker

Your dream property is just a phone call away; what are you waiting for? Call our industry experts today, for any property need you may have. We provide a free, no obligation consultation: +971 4 302 5800 or book your appointment.