Real estate ownership certificate in the UAE | AX Capital

Real estate ownership certificate in the UAE

Questions related to the real estate purchase in the United Arab Emirates may concern both experienced and novice investors. Regardless of what a person buys an object for (to live in it permanently, to come on vacation, to conduct business in the premises, to issue a residence permit in the country, to rent or resell), he asks questions about what the laws of the Arab Emirates say about registering the acquired apartments, how and where the object is registered, how information about it is entered in the register, whether the state authorities give guarantees for ownership. So let’s figure them out.

Legislation on the real estate registration in the UAE

Let’s look at the legislation of the United Arab Emirates in the field of property registration.


To begin with, it should be said that UAE citizens have the right to own villas, apartments and commercial premises in any locality of the country, while a foreign citizen can become the owner of an object/objects only in certain zones and areas. They are called freehold territories. To buy a property located there, a foreigner must obtain a permit. For example, it can be issued in the Executive Council of the city in Abu Dhabi.


In Dubai, there are territories where you can buy an object and to do with it what you want. For example, you can resell it, donate, rent, inherit, and so on. Such zones include the following neighborhoods of the metropolis:


  • Palm Islands;
  • Dubai Marina;
  • Greens;
  • Archipelago of the World;
  • Jumeirah Beach Residence and others.


A foreign national can own housing in the United Arab Emirates for 99 years. This type of property is called freehold. To be precise, he can rent an object for a given period, but does not have the right to sell, donate property, inherit it, and so on. There are many freehold zones in Ajman and Dubai, and there is almost none of them in the rest of the country.


The Dubai Land Department maintains a temporary register that records purchase and sale transactions of unfinished properties. All construction companies must register such buildings and enter information about the purchase and sale transaction of the house under construction. When the building is erected, it will be registered in a specially created register of the Land Department of the city. Transactions with objects under construction must be registered with the Land Department of the city.


Those who rent apartments in Dubai should remember that information about the rental transaction must be entered in the Apartment Registration Office.


If you are building an object in a megalopolis, you must register the agreement with the Land Department.


After the conclusion of the purchase and sale transaction of an apartment or business premises, you must register the contract with the Dubai Real Estate Registration Authority in order for the contract to be legally valid.

Real estate registration procedure in the UAE

Each emirate has its own procedure. For example, the parties to the transaction meet at the Land Department of the city to formalize the transfer of property rights. Instead of one of them (or two parties), a legal representative can come to this meeting.


The parties provide certain packages of documents, sign the necessary papers, which are certified by the Department’s employees. Then the representatives of the agency register the object of the transaction, entering information about it in the register.

How is the information entered in the UAE Real Estate Register

Registration of the acquired object is made out in its own way in each emirate. In Dubai, the transaction participants – the seller and the investor – meet at the local Land Department to register the transfer of ownership. Representatives of the parties may be present at the meeting instead. The meeting is necessary in order:


  • To provide original documents (a paper confirming the transfer of ownership, which is also called a bill of sale; a certificate that the construction company does not object to the transfer of ownership; a sales contract; passports, visas, as well as company documents, if the party/parties to the transaction is a legal entity);
  • To sign a document on the transfer of ownership;
  • For the investor to deposit the amount of the property value;
  • For the seller and the investor to make all payments for the object registration;
  • For the Land Department to issue a certificate of ownership to the investor.
  • To register the acquired premises in electronic form.


The real estate register has all the transactions related to the purchase and sale. There is also information about the object location, its description, and so on.

Is the UAE Real Estate Registry publicly available?

No one can see information about objects in the register. Only the following persons have access to this information:


  • property owners;
  • judicial departments.


They can receive copies of the documents signed by the department’s employees and certified with seals, which are stored in the register.


Extracts from the registers are usually needed for:


  • ownership confirmation;
  • getting information about real estate;
  • debt collection;
  • analysis of the cost of objects (for example, to study the local market), and so on.

State guarantee of real estate ownership in the UAE

The State does not provide such guarantees. If necessary, on the basis of fraud or forgery, you can challenge the information entered in the register. If the unconstitutional actions of one of the parties is proved, the representatives of the Land Department edit the information.

We will help you choose and buy the best property in the United Arab Emirates

Do you want to become a property owner in the UAE and are already looking for an object? Entrust this to the real estate agency «Ax Capital», which has collected relevant proposals for the apartments in different localities of the country. Our employees are happy to help you choose a residential or commercial property, and are also ready to provide legal assistance in preparing the necessary documents for the purchase.