How to find your agent in Dubai: expert advice

How to find your agent in Dubai: expert advice

05.10.2023 (updated 05.31.2023)

  • AX Blog
  • How to find your agent in Dubai: expert advice

Buying property in the UAE can be challenging. A foreign country and legislation, legal subtleties of documentation, and the language barrier are significant factors that should be taken into account. It makes sense to hire a professional broker with an in-depth knowledge of the local market who will navigate the variety of available options, make an informed decision based on your specific situation, and handle all the documentation on the transaction. Aram Grigoryan, Senior Property Expert at AX CAPITAL, explains how to choose a real estate agent and check their license and what to focus on during the meeting.


Why hire a professional agent

You are legally allowed to purchase real estate in the UAE without realtor’s services. Saving on the fee might seem enticing, but you need to have a clear understanding of what a broker does.

According to Aram Grigoryan, buying real estate without an agent is like administering self-treatment from the Internet without consulting a doctor. You cannot use googled advice alone when your health is concerned, if only because not all online information is accurate. You need assistance of a professional who has worked in the relevant field for a long time and has subject-matter expertise.

“Choosing a property is not the easiest thing in the world. Even if you know the city well, which is in fact rare, only a professional realtor can help you to avoid pitfalls and handle the subtleties you might have never considered. Agents have a full understanding of the market and know where, what, and when to purchase,” the expert says.

Another important thing is the documentation that a broker is dealing with. They provide legal support of the transaction.If you are buying real estate from the developer, an agent is your most reliable ally. The developer’s sales department has a limited range of products – only the real estate made by this construction company. An independent agent works for you and your benefit, so they will offer you projects by different developers.

How to check an agent’s license

In Dubai, every agent must have a license. The United Arab Emirates appreciate high tech and complete transparency, so you can check the agent’s and agency’s license via the Dubai REST app. This is an official application of the Dubai Government for tracking the status of an off-plan property, checking information on real estate agencies and developers, managing lease agreements, and much more.

Signs of an experienced agent

The Dubai real estate market is extremely saturated. Not all brokers offering their services are capable and have the required experience. You should consider several factors to choose an informed professional.

  1. An agent must be a real estate consultant, not a sales associate. To understand who you are dealing with, you may name several projects and ask for the agent’s opinion. A competent broker will list all pros and cons and provide arguments. They may bring up not only obvious features, such as the property’s location, but also many other significant details. Experienced professionals know the district’s infrastructure, the availability and location of schools and shops, the major motorways, entrances and exits, etc. You can also ask the agent about the community’s disadvantages in relation to your personal preferences. Finding a perfect match is almost impossible, so if an agent has honestly listed all drawbacks, it means they work in good faith and try to select the option that suits you best, Aram Grigoryan says.
  2. An agent must know the ins and outs of making the transaction and the documents required to purchase real estate. They must present all possible options of closing the deal and explain the transaction’s legal framework to you as the future owner.
  3. A good agency must have a professionally crafted website and be present on major social media. You can also reed reviews, which are rather subjective, but if a tangible negative pattern can be traced, this could be an argument against this agency.
  4. Note how quickly and easily the agent has connected with you. If they were able to do that, they can probably deal with other agents, buyers, and sellers—meaning reputation, networking, and a chance to negotiate better terms for your deal.

“The right agent is a professional who will help you not only with purchasing real estate. They will support you throughout the construction process in case of off-plan properties, during handover and subsequent lease of the apartment, and so on. We nurture warm, trust-based, long-term relationships with most of our clients. In my humble opinion, you need to find an agent interested in building such relations with you. It will benefit you both in the future much more than a quick deal here and now,” Aram Grigoryan explains.

How much agent’s services cost in Dubai

The average fee is 2% of the property value.

Decisions to make before meeting an agent

It is important to settle several critical issues with yourself:

  • What do you need a property for?

Real estate is never one-size-fits-all. For example, if you buy an apartment or a villa in a gated suburban community, you may feel very comfortable living there, but such a property is almost impossible to lease out by the day. In some buildings and complexes, this kind of lease is not even allowed.

If you are looking for a buy-to-live property, a capable agent will take note of your preferences, lifestyle, family, etc., not the objective parameters that make the property easier to lease or resell. 

  • How much are you prepared to spend?

If you are considering an off-plan project, you are entitled to an interest-free instalment plan that makes your budget planning more flexible. If you are buying a completed or existing property, you will need to pay the entire amount almost in one go. If applying for a UAE residence visa matters for you, the purchase amount should be at least AED 750,000 (USD 204,000).

  • What matters for you in real estate?

A competent professional can find an option that matches your search parameters as much as possible. To do this, the agent needs to know which of your preferences are priorities and which are optional. For instance, the availability of a school nearby, the cost, and the number of bedrooms could be critical, while the floor plan and design features are negotiable on a case-by-case basis.

  • Do you have critical requirements to any parameters?

This question is similar to the previous one, except it concerns the specific preferences that are better discussed separately, e.g., having a cellar in a villa, being able to order food from the hotel in whose grounds the apartment is located, etc.

Trust is key

Answers to all these questions may vary, and it is perfectly normal not to know exactly what you want or wish to form an impression of real estate price ranges in Dubai. However, the agent needs to understand your circumstances for your interaction to be efficient.

If you feel uncomfortable sharing your preferences, family matters, and financial capabilities with a stranger, try discussing unrelated subjects with the agent. Ask them about themselves, their career, and living in the UAE. This may relieve the tension.

“My key advice is, be open. This is the most productive way for both sides,” Aram Grigoryan concludes.

Buying real estate in Dubai

If you are planning to buy an apartment or a villa in the United Arab Emirates for relocation, as a vacation home, or an investment asset, please contact AX CAPITAL. We will answer all your questions and gladly assist you with any problem, no matter how challenging.

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