‘Is it cheaper to rent an Airbnb apartment than to take out a one-year lease?’

I recently moved to the United Arab Emirates for a one year assignment. I have been in the hotel for a few days but my employer asked me to look for an apartment with a one year lease.

I don’t want to sign a traditional one-year apartment lease with a real estate broker. Instead, I was told that several Airbnb vacation homes are now offered under long-term residential leases.

Read more

What are the pros and cons of renting a vacation home long-term with a management company? Are there any hidden fees I should watch out for? Do I have to pay a commission to the management company?

I am also considering hotel apartments or serviced apartments. Do these come at a rental premium for a traditional residential lease? Please advise. KV, Dubai

If you use an agent registered with the Real Estate Regulatory Agency, the benefits associated with the services of a real estate broker are numerous. Contrary to popular belief, brokers have the knowledge and expertise to provide any prospect with the benefits that will lead to a successful rental or sale.

A one-year rental is considered a long-term rental, so limiting yourself to using only management companies or second homes for your search could prove to be a mistake in terms of inventory diversity.

The only advantage I see in using a management company for your search would be that the property will most likely be managed by them. This will help if there are any maintenance issues in the future. Being able to contact the owner to resolve any maintenance issues can be a pain when they don’t respond quickly.

If you rent a property through Airbnb, you will be charged a service fee, security deposit fee, and the landlord will also collect local taxes (if applicable). The owner can also set the cost of cleaning their property and charge for additional occupants, so please check the fine print.

Hotel and service departments have a premium because of the services offered, which are sought after by busy working people

Using a management company (assuming they hold a real estate license from the Ministry of Economic Development) or a real estate broker will attract a commission of around 5% of the lease amount.

Hotels and serviced apartments are priced high because of the services offered, which are sought after by busy workers. Often these apartments come with many extras included, such as all bills, internet, and media packages including TV, maid, cleaning service, and access to a gym and swimming pool.

Keep all options open to select the right property after talking to everyone involved.

If a landlord wishes to increase the rent for a specific residential unit according to the Housing Regulatory Agency’s Rent Index, does the notice have to be sent by registered mail or a simple email with 90 days written notice to it be enough? EF, Dubai

When it comes to changes to an existing rental agreement, the landlord or tenant must communicate the changes by giving 90 days notice.

However, these types of notifications do not necessarily have to be sent by a notary public or by registered mail. As long as they are written, they are legal.

The easiest and possibly the best way would be to email and forward a WhatsApp message to the tenant.

Mario Volpi is Director of Sales and Rentals at Engel & Volkers. He has worked in the real estate industry for over 35 years in London and Dubai. The opinions expressed do not constitute legal advice and are provided for informational purposes only. Please send your questions to [email protected]

Comments are closed.