Abu Dhabi property sales may pick up in 2019

By Divi S.

ABU DHABI 25 December 2018: Prices for properties in Abu Dhabi have seen modest decreases as 2018 draws to a close, according to a new research.

“Similar to Dubai, Abu Dhabi is still a favourable market for investors and tenants. Property prices in the capital city remain on a downtrend that continues from H1 and Q3. However, as the price changes have remained marginal, it heralds the possibility of a change in investor outlook in the emirate,” said Haider Ali Khan, CEO of Bayut.

“The new visa reforms and changes to the foreign ownership system will also impact the dynamics of the Abu Dhabi real estate market, and should see property sales pick up in 2019. We can also witness an uptick in the launch of new developments including some luxury projects across town, which reflects investor trust in the emirate, and further strengthens the belief of a more stable market in the coming year,” he added.

The Abu Dhabi property market has seen sales and rentals prices decrease on average for apartments and villas, with only a few significant price changes for certain areas in the emirate, according to the Abu Dhabi H2 2018 Property Market Report by Bayut.com.

Sales Highlights

● Al Reem Island takes the crown for apartment sales with Marina Square as the st-searched building in the area. The most popular area for villa sales is Al Reef with the sub-community of Al Reef Villas accounting for most searches in the area.
● For apartments, the most significant price changes occur in Al Raha Beach , where 2-bedroom units has seen prices fall by 10%, from an average of Dh2M in H1 to Dh1.8M now. This is followed by a 9.3% decrease in prices for 1-bedroom units in Baniyas, where prices have fallen from Dh750k to Dh680k.
● There is also a 7.7% decrease in sale prices for 3-bedroom villas in Hydra Village, where prices have dropped from Dh1.3M to Dh1.2M. Other notable price changes include average prices for 5-bedroom villas in Al Reef declining from Dh2.45M to Dh2.3M.

Rental Highlights

● Mohammed Bin Zayed City takes the top spot for apartment rentals, with Mohammed Bin Zayed Centre attracting the most attention from potential tenants. For villa rentals,Khalifa City A is the most popular, while Villa Compounds yielded majority of the searches in the area.
● Khalifa City A has seen the most significant changes in prices for apartment rentals. 2-bedroom units have seen a fall in rental prices from an average of Dh80k in H1 to Dh67k now. Other areas that have seen notable price changes include Al Khalidiya, where 2-bedroom units have experienced a decrease of 15.8% in rental prices, from Dh95k to Dh80k now.
● For villas, 5-bedroom units in Al Muroor have dropped in rental prices by 9.5% from Dh210k in H1 to Dh190k now. This is followed by Al Reef , where prices have seen a fall of 9.1% from Dh165k to Dh150k now.

Apartment Sales

The sale prices for apartments in Al Reem remain largely stable. When compared to H1, studio apartments in the area have seen the biggest decrease of 6.5% from an average of Dh620k to Dh580k now. The average prices for 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom apartments are Dh950k and Dh1.5M respectively.

Most areas have experienced a 1.5% – 9% decline in sales prices, with the exception of Saadiyat Island and Yas Island . In Saadiyat Island , prices for a 2-bedroom apartment have increased by a significant 8%, raising average prices from Dh2.5M to Dh2.7M. Meanwhile, Yas Island has seen 2-bedroom apartments increase by 3.5% in prices. The buying prices for these units here has risen from Dh1.15M to Dh1.17M. Investors will also find more luxurious 2-bedroom units in Yas Island for a higher price that goes up to Dh2.8M. This is not surprising, as Yas Island remains the most popular off-plan neighbourhood in Abu Dhabi.

On the other hand, prices are stable for studios in Masdar City and 1-bedroom apartments in Yas Island , witnessing no change from H1.

Apartment Rentals

Mohammed Bin Zayed City remains as the most popular area for apartment rentals, and compared to H1, studios and 1-bedroom units in the area have seen a decline of 10.7% and 11.1% respectively. You can find studio apartments for an average rental price of Dh25k, while 1-bedroom units are being offered at a price of Dh40k.

Khalifa City A has seen a large drop in rental prices for 2-bedroom apartments from Dh80k in H1 to Dh67k now. Interestingly, the price for these units has been steadily decreasing throughout 2018. Areas such as Hamdan Street have experienced a 10% decline in rental prices for 1-bedroom units, while Al Khalidiyah has seen a drop of 14.3% for the same. However, rental prices for 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom units in Airport Street have remained steady throughout 2018 at Dh55k and Dh75k respectively.

Villa Sales

Al Reef remains the most popular with property buyers for villas. Prices have remained more or less stable throughout H2, with only a slight decrease. 3-bedroom villas have fallen from AED1.65M to Dh1.58M, 4-bedroom units have seen a decline from Dh2.15M to Dh2.05M, and-bedroom units have xperienced the biggest drop from Dh2.45M to Dh2.3M.

The sale prices for villas in other popular areas like Yas Island have also remained stable with only slight decreases, while 4-bedroom units in Saadiyat Island have experienced no change in prices at all.

Villa Rentals

Khalifa City A remains the most popular area for villa rentals in Abu Dhabi, and prices have experienced minor changes, standing at Dh130k for 3-bedroom units and Dh165k for 4-bedroom units, while 5-bedroom averages at Dh175k. Other notable prices changes include decreasing prices for 5-bedroom villas in Al Reef from Dh165k to Dh150k, and similarly for 5-bedroom units in Al Muroor , from Dh210k to Dh190k. On the other hand, well-known areas like Mohammed Bin Zayed City and Al Mushrif have experienced modest decreases between 2-8%.

Finally, 4-bedroom villas in Shakhbout City ( Khalifa City B) , Al Raha Gardens , and Mohammed Bin Zayed City have seen no change in prices from H1.

Most Popular Villa Sub Communities

For villas sales, the luxury Saadiyat Beach Villas brought in the most searches overall in Saadiyat Island at 65.1%. Golf Gardens in Khalifa City A is also very popular for villa sales, accounting for 66.5% of overall interest from potential investors.

When it comes to villa rentals, Villa Compounds in Khalifa City A is the most popular choice with residents, bringing in 67.6% of searches in the areas. MBZ Centre also ranks as one of the popular sub-communities for villa rentals in MBZ City at 68.7%. Potential tenants are also turning to Mushrif Gardens as their first choice for renting villas in Al Mushrif.

Most Popular Off-Plan Projects

Yas Island, Saadiyat Island, Al Reem Island and Al Salam Street are the most popular off-plan communities in Abu Dhabi, receiving the most interest from potential investors.

Within Yas Island , the sub-community of Ansam has attracted the most attention from investors, accounting for 32.9% of the searches. Meanwhile, Jawaher Saadiyat has brought in 36% of the searches in Saadiyat Island.

Disclaimer: The above report is based on prices advertised by real estate agencies on behalf of their clients on Bayut.com, and not representative of actual real estate transactions conducted in Abu Dhabi.

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