Dubai Real Estate Developers Revising Prices and Payment Plans Based on New Market Conditions

With an estimated 70+ projects that are now for sale across Dubai, we are increasingly seeing Real Estate Developers revise their offering, prices and payment plans to gain market share.

While the major established developers like Emaar Properties, Nakheel and Dubai Properties Group are still able to sell out projects with relative ease – there are now dozens of smaller, private developers that are building various types of projects across Dubai.

The competition is strongest on the mid-end segment. Hot spot areas of development include projects like Dubai Sports City, Jumeirah Village and the greater Dubailand area. With so much competition in this segment, developers are adapting to the market place with new, innovative campaigns and product placements.

A bit of background; Dubai’s real estate market crashed in late 2008 and between 2009 – 2011, the market corrected drastically with prices declining between 30 – 50% in some cases.

Starting in 2012, mainly as a result of instability in the region (remember the Arab Spring), billions of dollars poured into Dubai – largely being diverted into the local real estate market.

From 2012 – to late 2013, the market appreciated drastically. In order to cool down the market and prevent another bubble, the Government took a number of measures to prevent speculation. An increase in the mortgage cap, doubling of transaction costs and preventing off-plan buyers to resell immediately have all contributed to a slow down.

The slow-down has not been as drastic as once feared. The correction which began in mid-2014 has seen prices decline by 7 – 10% on average for most communities. Many of the small and medium sized investors have started consolidating their positions. Most mature communities have high occupancy rates and now witness less transactions.

The overall market has now shifted towards the off-plan market. Buyers from within Dubai and from overseas are attracted to purchasing on payment plans which minimize cash flow and risk.

Thousands of units have been announced for development since 2013. In the long run, the city will require new housing to counter a growing population and high rental costs which contribute to the high cost of living in the city.

With so many under-construction projects, developers are competing against one another in ways that they have never done before.

Developers are revising prices downwards and in an interesting turn of events, many new projects are now offering payment plans which extend to upto 3 years after completion – a concept which was pretty much unheard of a few years ago.

Good examples of these extended payment plans are projects like Royal Estates in Dubai Investment Park, GGICO’s numerous developments in Sports City and Dubai Silicon Oasis and Al Khail Heights.

Even high-end developments are beginning to introduce flexible payment plans. Fortuna Village, a 30 townhouse development enclave within Victory Heights, has recently offered buyers a chance to pay off their units upto one year after handover on a 6% increase on the purchase price.

According to research done by on under-construction freehold supply, there are 9,000 villas, 6,300 townhouses and 38,000 apartments currently under-construction across Dubai.

The 4 Principles of Securing Real Estate Development Finance

Unless you’re one of a very privileged group of people and you do not need to seek Real Estate development finance, getting the cash you need is probably one of the most influential aspects of whether your real estate venture will succeed. That said, even if you don’t need to borrow money for a development, it usually makes business sense to borrow at least some of the cost anyway (that point is for a different article!).

Make no mistake, like all investment – real estate involves an element of risk to a lesser or greater degree. And like all businesses, risk should be managed. However, it could be said that ‘risk’ allows profit (or loss) to be made. If a real estate Investor or Developer has no appetite for risk, they may as well stuff their mattress with cash rather than putting it into Property. If there were no risk involved, wouldn’t everyone be a Property Speculator?

So it could be said that Risk is nothing to be intimidated by, but that it should be monitored so you don’t lose the shirt off your back (and with property, it’s possible to lose an awful lot of money in a short space of time if ridiculous mistakes are made). A philosophical attitude to this is quite important, because the truth of the current situation is that banks would really prefer the customer to shoulder as much of the business and project risk as possible. Let’s face it banks are in a powerful position, they have the money that the Developer wants…they call the shots. If you haven’t got the nerve to take on the risk, the bank will lend the money to another Developer who is prepared to take the risk.

I personally don’t think that this is a bad situation. It could be argued that the current/recent financial crisis who due in part, to excessive lending to people who should have been subject to greater scrutiny.

The 4 (very) basic rules to consider before approaching banks for Real Estate Development funding are:

1. Make sure you have access to people with experience! It is often said “never invest in anything you don’t truly understand”, if you are a novice Developer you should not be attempting to learn everything my your mistakes….they will be too costly. Speak to people with experience. The bank will insist upon you having good and regular access to appropriate professionals such as Architects, Structural Engineers, Realtors/Estate Agents or Building Surveyors.

2. Don’t expect to borrow too much against the project! As a general rule, a bank will expect you to put up at least 25% of the combined total of initial project purchase and build/development costs. You should also include a contingency fund of around 5-10% of the total build cost figure. It’s also a good idea to have enough working capital to be able to fund the initial stages of the individual build stages just until the bank releases funds in a staged-payment arrangement.

3. Don’t use a Limited Liability Company when you are starting out! The primary purpose of a LLC is to limit the personal risk of the company owner(s), this is not what the banks want to see. They will want to ‘facility’ to pursue you to recoup losses if it all goes wrong. This may sound dramatic, however I am talking worst-case-scenario! In reality, banks would far rather work with you to sort out problems than immediately enforcing their agreement covenants.

4. The CV of the individual Developer. When you begin to establish a good track-record in property development, the banks will tend to be far less nervous about lending you money. It’s never a good idea to take on a huge project that the banks knows will challenge you. It’s far better to gain experience by carrying out light work (such as modernisation and redecoration) rather looking for a substantial rebuilding project as one of your first attempts. ‘Easing yourself’ into the field of Property Development is the way all very successful professional developers have done it. It’s not a way of life that should be entered into on a whim; if a Developer gets in ‘above their head’, they are far less likely to continue in the field. Completing a Real Estate development is a very satisfying thing, it’s much more sensible to complete several ‘quick refurbishments’ than jumping straight into a substantial project requiring specialist structural work.

To conclude, banks are willing to lend at the moment. they have simply become more scrupulous with who they lend to. If you have prepared yourself properly to begin your venture (and you’re creditworthy), then you will find that the banks are far more likely to accommodate your requirements for Property Development Finance.

Using Home Interior Design Software Can Make Your New Design A Breeze

When you are undertaking an interior design project, using a quality home interior design software program can be very helpful. It can help you choose colors and place furniture. There are many design software programs available, so choose wisely.

These software programs allow you to create the room you are decorating right on the computer. You can choose the measurements and shape of the room. Then you can place walls and windows where they are in your room. This allows you to try out different colors and designs on your own room right on your computer. Some home interior design programs will also let you download a picture of your room. Then you can really get a good feel of how a color or design will work in your space.

After you have created your room on your computer, then comes the fun part, trying out colors and designs. You can use actual samples of paint colors, flooring options, window treatments, lighting choices, and more. If a particular product that you are interested in is not featured on the home interior design software that you have chosen, you can import your own samples from other sites.

Another nice feature of design software is that you can plan furniture arrangements on the screen. No more moving around heavy pieces of furniture, only to change your mind and have to move it somewhere else. You can finalize your furniture placement on your program, and then move it to the desired location.

Home design software is especially helpful when planning a new home. You can choose from many exterior designs and finishes. You can see how your new home would look in brick, and then change it to siding. You can even plan out your landscaping.

When planning the interior of your new home or remodel, this software can be very helpful. Kitchens and bathrooms are the trickiest rooms to plan. With a quality design program, designing these rooms is a snap. You can change the layout as many times as you want until you find the perfect space for you. In the kitchen, you can import actual appliances and countertop choices. You can put together your dream kitchen all on your computer. Home interior design software allows you to get a snapshot of your new space before it is finished.

Using a great home interior design software program is the perfect way to design your home. It will help you to finalize your plans before you begin. This will help you save a lot of time, money, and effort on changing elements after you begin. Home interior design software is truly the wave of the design future.