A Guide to Rent-to-Own Program in Dubai

A Guide to Rent-to-Own Program in Dubai

01.04.2024 (updated 01.04.2024)

  • AX Blog
  • Rent-to-Own Properties in Dubai: The Complete Guide

The Rent-to-Own program, a trending housing arrangement in the UAE, offers a unique pathway to homeownership. This arrangement allows tenants to convert their rent into a gradual investment towards ownership of their rented property, eliminating the need for large down payments or immediate mortgage commitments.

In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide to a Rent-to-Own program in Dubai, the application process and required documents, and discuss its pros and cons.

Table of contents: 

What is the Concept of Rent-to-Own in Dubai?

In the simplest terms, the Rent-to-Own program works just like a typical lease, but with the added clause that allows the tenant to purchase the property at a predetermined price after a certain period of time. The tenant pays rent as usual, but a portion of the rent goes toward the property's final purchase price. Typically, developers charge a premium on rent compared to market rates for other properties. This schedule continues until the tenant decides to make a final balloon payment to take full ownership of the property.

The Rent-to-Own program is especially beneficial in regions with high real estate prices, such as the UAE. It allows potential homeowners to move into their dream homes without the initial financial burden. 

Creek Harbour area in Dubai
Creek Harbour area in Dubai.

What are the Advantages and Risks of the Rent-to-Own Program? 

Understanding the benefits and potential drawbacks is critical when considering the Rent-to-Own program. Below, we will explore the benefits and risks associated with this innovative housing program in Dubai.


  • Allows immediate move-in: tenants can live in their dream home without having to make a large down payment or meet strict mortgage criteria upfront.
  • Accumulated monthly rent toward purchase: a portion of their monthly rent is gradually applied toward the home's purchase price.
  • Try before you buy: tenants have time to evaluate the property, the surrounding community, and the actual cost of maintaining the home before fully committing to the purchase.

However, the Rent-to-Own program is not without its risks:

  • It's crucial to note that rental payments are non-recoverable, irrespective of whether the tenant eventually chooses to buy the property.
  • Forfeiture of the right to purchase: late rent payments or violations of lease terms can result in tenants losing the right to purchase the home and any accumulated amount they've paid toward the purchase.

To mitigate these risks, it's critical that tenants fully understand and comply with the terms of their Rent-to-Own agreement.

Business Bay area in Dubai
Business Bay area in Dubai

Why is Rent-to-Own better than Mortgage?

While both Rent-to-Own programs and mortgages provide avenues for homeownership, they differ significantly in several ways. Here's a look at why the Rent-to-Own option may be more appealing to certain individuals:

  • Dubai's Rent-to-Own scheme offers a practical route towards homeownership, especially for foreigners who might face difficulties securing a traditional mortgage. 
  • It allows potential homeowners to occupy their desired property immediately, unlike mortgages, which often require burdensome approval processes and large upfront payments. 
  • Additionally, Rent-to-Own allocates part of the regular rent towards the final purchase price, cultivating a more manageable and punctual financial journey toward ownership. 
  • The Rent-to-Own program gives individuals the opportunity to build credit and save for a down payment. Tenants also have the advantage of experiencing their dream home and its surroundings before fully committing. 
Downtown area in Dubai
Downtown area in Dubai

How to Apply for the Rent-to-Own Program? 

The application process for the Rent-to-Own program is straightforward and can be completed by following steps:

  1. Login on the official website of the Dubai Land Department (DLD).
  2. Go to “Services”, then “Real Estate Development Services” and select the “Request for registration a rent-to-own property (initial)” option.
  3. Complete the online form by providing details of the financing company, amount, payment method, and other required information.
  4. Upload the required documents as instructed on the platform.
  5. Once completed, click the “Submit” button to complete your application.

Once the application is submitted, all required documents will be sent to the applicant's email for further processing.

Dubai South area in Dubai
Dubai South area in Dubai

What Documents do you need to Apply for the Rent-to-Own Program?

When registering for Dubai's Rent-to-Own program, a range of documents must be submitted. The documents differ depending on the type of entity making the application but usually include:

For Individuals:

  • Copy of purchase agreement;
  • Copy of Emirates ID;
  • Copy of valid passport if the individual is a non-resident.

For Businesses / Sole Proprietorships:

  • Copy of business license;
  • Emirates ID or passport copy of license holder;
  • Optional but useful: power of attorney.

For Limited Liability Companies:

  • Copy of company's business license;
  • Copy of license holder's Emirates ID or passport;
  • Optional but useful: power of attorney.

For Sole Proprietorships:

  • Copy of business license;
  • Emirates ID or passport copy of license holder;
  • Optional but useful: power of attorney.

For Companies:

  • Legally translated (into Arabic) copy of the company's Memorandum of Association, including all appendices;
  • Copy of shareholder certificate;
  • Only for foreign companies and valid for one year, a No Objection Certificate from Free Zone Areas.

If you're interested in the Rent-to-Own program but need help figuring out where to start, our expert team at AX CAPITAL in Dubai is ready to help. 

We can guide you through the Rent-to-Own application process, help you select a prime property at an attractive price, manage all the paperwork, and assist you in obtaining a Dubai residency permit. 

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