Sunday, September 30, 2007

Real Estate Property Investment Series: Focus Dubai 2007

Dubais is a property market of two halvesas it is still a relatively young market in terms of its accessibility for foreign buyers it still has an active off plan residential real estate marketplace, and now it also has a resale and rental market too. This article examines the prospects for both in 2007

Dubais Off Plan Real Estate Prospects in 2007

When it first became possible for foreigner buyers to own freehold real estate in certain areas of Dubai there was an immediate frenzy of interest as properties were selling for relatively low prices in a location where there was already intense demand from expatriate workers for housing.

Both investors and expats living locally in Dubai went head to head for real estate and the off plan property investment cycle was born.

Investors have been making excellent profits from buying properties off plan in Dubai and paying just a deposit for them before flipping the incomplete units back onto a market where demand has been hungry for such property stock. Those who have bought in particularly well located and attractive high rises have often profited most by buying at the point of project conception and then holding stock until all other units had been sold outby waiting until demand for properties was outstripping the supply and then re-floating off plan stock on to the waiting market, investors have taken good profits in a relatively short space of time.

However, for such a market for profitability to continue there has to be a driving demand from other investors to buy flipped on properties and evidence suggests that this will not continue to be the case throughout 2007. Its a fact that profits derived from taking such an investment approach have softened recently because prices have risen so high, and the thought that Dubais property market can continue rising unabated and unchecked forever is nave at best and dangerous at worst.

Investors who take this flipping approach never actually intend paying for their properties, instead they rely on the fact there will be a waiting market hungry to buy resales off plan and all evidence is suggesting that this demand is waning and that the off plan market for investors could show signs of weakness in 2007.

Dubais Resale and Rental Real Estate Prospects in 2007

All is not lost - Dubais resale market and the future prospects for completed property stock are very good indeed for 2007 and beyond. Basically there is such intense and growing demand for real estate in Dubai with 5,000 new families moving to the emirate every month that supply cannot keep up with demand which pushes up rental rates charged and the underlying value of completed resale properties.

As each and every individual, couple or family arriving requires decent accommodation within easy reach and short commute of the main free trade zones and business areas, completed property stock across Dubai is intensely in demand meaning rental rates are already soaring and property prices are creeping higher. Dubai is also suffering from severe construction delays, a worsening shortage of construction workers and an excessive increase in the price of building materials which is holding back new projects and meaning that the predicted number of units to be completed in 2007 has been revised downwards. Clearly supply is not about to flow into the market any time soon and so the profitability of and desire for completed stock will rise.

Real estate investors looking for good performing property assets in Dubai need to buy completed stock in a good location that is not highly adversely affected by the commute issues plaguing Dubai at the moment - and then and only then can they be assured of strong returns in 2007 and beyond.

Rhiannon Williamson writes about property investment worldwide, to read more about property investment in Dubai in 2007 and beyond visit her site