How to (legally) make money with Airbnb in Dubai
The people of Dubai love to travel. And while they do, their apartments are locked down for a few weeks every year. If you own a house in Dubai, you could get 50% more rent – legally – with just a few conditions.
While Airbnb had been active in Dubai for years, it had long operated in a legal gray area. New rules introduced by Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Trade Marketing (DTCM) allow property owners to list their properties on the site.
However, since April last year, landlords have legally been able to cut out the middleman and list their property directly on home-sharing giant Airbnb.
Tenants also have the option of subletting their rented accommodation, but only if the landlord agrees.
Note: DTCM, the Dubai body that regulates homes listed on Airbnb, did not return a request for comment for this article. Despite April rules giving power to landlords in Dubai, it’s unclear whether it’s legal to list property in the other six emirates on Airbnb.
Airbnb in Dubai: Here’s what you need to know
– Listing a single property on Airbnb requires the owner to obtain a permit from the DTCM.
– Follow this link to the DTCM online platform: https://hh.dtcm.gov.ae/holidayhomes/ and follow the steps indicated on the portal – there are several.
– You will then need to go to the DTCM in Al Garhoud during working hours on working days. Don’t forget to bring a copy of your Emirates ID card.
– You can then upload your property and relevant documents to the DTCM platform.
– If you are renting, make sure you get a letter of no objection from the landlord.
– You will also need to take out insurance for your home.
– Don’t forget that you must pay 1,520 Dh to activate your account on the DTCM online platform. There is also a Dh300 fee for each room in your property and a Dh70 management fee.
– The rules of the DTCM only authorize the rental of a complete accommodation.
– If you do not register your properties with the DTCM, you will be liable to a fine of 5,000 Dh.
– Next, the owner must create a profile for the property on Airbnb with a description and photos. Next, the owner should remain active on the site to respond to inquiries.
– When making a reservation, the new occupant must receive the key and the access cards to the building, as well as a number to call in the event of a problem.
– Be sure to obtain passport copies from each guest and submit them to DTCM.
– With each reservation, the owner must also take a scan of the occupants’ passport and send it to the DTCM. A tourist tax must also be paid to the department.
– As long as you haven’t skipped any steps, you’re good to go.
(Advice provided by Ameer Jawad, the founder of Faraway Homes, a Dubai-based vacation home company)