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Survey Reveals: Cost of Accommodation in the UAE drops

UAE : 18 October 2010

Recent survey results show that education, utilities and healthcare are still costly.

As the property market continues to get lower, cost of living and working in the UAE drops, as stated in the Kershaw Leonard Cost of Living Report for the nation.

Managing partner of Kershaw Leonard Mike Hynes noted that prices for either an apartment or villa in Dubai have dropped by almost 40 per cent this year.  Also Hynes stated that current tight bank lending rules will certainly harness the effects of any rebounds over the short term.

Hynes said that rents for both villas and apartments in Abu Dhabi and Dubai have decreased by the same figures.  Even though pricing for freehold properties looks to be steadier or even increasing in certain cases, rental costs are still decreasing.

As an example, an apartment with three bedrooms in Dubai currently rents for between Dh 80,000 and Dh 180,000, down quite a substantial amount from 2008.  In Al Barsha an apartment containing three bedrooms will rent for an amount 17 per cent lower than figures seen in September of last year.

The difference between rental figures for Abu Dhabi and Dubai were also covered in the report.  A three-bedroom apartment can rent for a figure within a wide range of Dh 135,000 to Dh 240,000.

Costs for education, utilities and healthcare are all remaining high, even with the drop in housing costs.  Dubai and Abu Dhabi are ranked at the top of the costliest spots to live within the GCC.

Many UAE private schools are increasing their enrollment fees to the highest possible levels.  Schooling costs in Dubai sit at the top, where enrollment at International Baccalaureate will cost Dh 90,000 or more annually.

Hynes noted that trends can change drastically in just one year.

The report was based on cost of living for three typical scenarios drawn from real life.  Fluctuations were applied to an Asian family living as expats in Sharjah, as well as a young and single advertising executive with a Dubai residence on Sheikh Zayed Road and an expat family from the West with a home in the Meadows.

Paul Holdsworth, Staff Writer, Gulf Jobs Market News
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