What documentation will I need to lease a property?

Prospective tenants are required to present a valid passport, a valid visa page or a visa-processing letter (this can be provided by the HR department of the company you are working with). The required documents are needed from each tenant wishing to be included in the tenancy contract.

Who will prepare the leasing contract?

The leasing contract is a legal document governed by the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA). It will be prepared by Gulf Sotheby’s International Realty, signed by both landlord and tenant, and registered with the Dubai Rent Committee. The contract outlines all the conditions of the lease and the payment terms.

Do I need to give references?

No. You will not be required to provide references to lease a property in Dubai.

Will I be required to pay a security deposit?

Yes. Upon selecting the property you wish to lease, a security deposit will be requested from you by a Gulf Sotheby’s International Realty global property consultant. The amount is payable by cheque and is equivalent to 5% of the annual lease amount for unfurnished properties, and 10% for furnished properties. This amount is payable to the landlord.

Who holds the security deposit?

Gulf Sotheby’s International Realty will collect the security deposit amount from you when you sign the lease agreement. All transactions will be done in our office. When the landlord signs the lease agreement, the cheque with the amount of the security deposit will be handed over to the landlord. The landlord has the right to cash the security deposit amount for the duration of the term. This will be returned to you at the end of the lease agreement provided that the property is returned in the same condition it was leased out to you.

How are the leasing instalments taken?

The leasing instalments are between 1 to 4 payments. They are taken with post-dated cheques spaced evenly throughout the lease term. These payments will be taken in advance when signing the lease agreement and be held by the landlord. The landlord or his/her property manager will cash each cheque according to its due date.

Are utility bills included when leasing?

All utilities are the responsibility of the tenant. DEWA is the supplier for water and electricity in Dubai and, for many properties, the DEWA will also include the A/C. If the A/C is not included, you will require an additional connection – this is called Empower. For data and television packages, there are many suppliers, such as OSN, Showtime and du. In any case, your global property consultant will advise you on the connections you require and suit best your chosen property.

What additional fees do I need to pay?

There is an agency fee applicable, which is 5% of the annual lease amount. Also, for some properties, you may need a resident’s pass or access card, which will serve as your access to the pool, beach or fitness facilities. For most of the properties, this is included. In case it is not included, your global property consultant will advise you on how to acquire it and the cost involved (if required).

What happens at the end of the contract?

Standard leasing contracts are for 12 months. 3 months prior to the expiration date of your contract, your global property consultant will contact you to discuss if you wish to renew. Any changes to the contract are governed by the rental committee and its current laws. If you wish to vacate the property, you will be required to inform your landlord 3 months in advance, and at the end of the term, an inspection will be carried out and your deposit returned, provided the property is returned in the same condition it was leased out to you.

What precautions should I take when leasing a property?

Firstly, work only with credible agencies/companies. Gulf Sotheby’s International Realty is a fully regulated company and represents the global Sotheby’s International Realty® brand in the entire GCC region, including the markets of the UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Oman. Our clients range from high net worth individuals to banks and financial institutions, royalty and governments, as well as corporate and commercial clients. Secondly, always ask to see the agent’s RERA broker number – this ensures that the agent you are dealing with is a registered agent and is licensed to practice in the UAE. Thirdly, always ask questions and request anything you have agreed with the agent to be included in the sale contract. And lastly, when handing over any payments, make sure that the transaction happens at the agent’s office and always request receipts and copies of all documents.


If the question you have in mind is not listed above with an answer then please ask below and we will be happy to get back to you with help.

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