property Dubai

When it comes to realising the dream of owning a property in Dubai, it’s imperative to have a trusted real estate agent in Dubai by your side. This thriving metropolis, known for its opulent lifestyle, stunning skyline, and tax-friendly environment, has become a global magnet for property investors and homebuyers alike. However, beneath the glittering surface of the Dubai real estate market, there are hidden and extra costs that can catch buyers off guard. In this article, we’ll unveil these costs, helping you make an informed decision when purchasing a property in Dubai.

Transfer Fees and Property Registration Costs

In Dubai, when you buy a property, you’re required to pay a set percentage of the property’s value as transfer fees and property registration costs. These costs can add up significantly, typically ranging from 4% to 6% of the property’s purchase price. It’s crucial to factor in these expenses when budgeting for your property purchase.

Agent Commission

Real estate agents play a crucial role in the Dubai property market. They help buyers find the right property, negotiate deals, and navigate the complex legal processes. However, their services come at a price. Real estate agent commissions typically range from 2% to 3% of the property’s value. Ensure you’re aware of these fees when working with an agent.

Mortgage Arrangement Fees

If you plan to finance your property purchase through a mortgage, you’ll need to consider mortgage arrangement fees. These fees cover the administrative costs associated with setting up the mortgage. They can vary depending on the lender and the type of mortgage, but it’s common for them to range from 1% to 2% of the loan amount.

Maintenance and Service Charges

Many properties in Dubai, especially in gated communities and apartment complexes, come with maintenance and service charges. These fees cover the upkeep of common areas, security, and essential services. Be sure to inquire about these costs as they can add up significantly over the years, impacting your overall cost of ownership.

Utility Connection Fees

Connecting utilities, such as water and electricity, to your new property in Dubai can involve additional costs. While these fees might not be astronomical, it’s essential to consider them as part of your overall property acquisition costs.

Community Fees and Memberships

Some residential developments in Dubai come with exclusive access to community facilities, like gyms, pools, and parks. To enjoy these amenities, you may need to pay community fees or memberships, which can be an ongoing expense.

Homeowners Association (HOA) Fees

For properties in developments with homeowners’ associations, you’ll be required to pay HOA fees. These fees go towards the maintenance and management of the community. They can vary widely, so make sure to inquire about them when considering a property.


Homeowners’ insurance is not always included in your property purchase. It’s a wise choice to protect your investment, but it’s an extra cost that should be factored into your budget.

Legal Fees

The legal aspect of buying a property in Dubai is a vital part of the process. Legal fees include drafting and reviewing contracts, conducting due diligence, and ensuring the transaction is legally sound. Legal fees can vary depending on the complexity of the deal, but it’s essential to have a budget in place.

Currency Exchange Costs

For international buyers, currency exchange fees can be a hidden cost. When transferring money from your home country to Dubai, banks may charge currency conversion fees and offer exchange rates that aren’t in your favour. To minimise these costs, consider using specialised currency exchange services.

Taxes and VAT

Dubai is known for its tax-friendly environment, but there are exceptions. For example, the introduction of Value Added Tax (VAT) in the UAE has impacted various sectors, including real estate. While VAT doesn’t apply to all properties, it’s essential to check whether it applies to your purchase and budget accordingly.

Resale Fees

If you plan to sell your property in the future, you should consider potential resale fees or transfer fees. Some communities and developments have specific rules and charges related to property resale. Be aware of these costs to avoid surprises down the road.

Interior Furnishing and Renovation Costs

Once you’ve purchased a property, you might want to customise it to your liking. Interior furnishing and renovation costs can vary significantly, and it’s crucial to budget for these expenses if you plan on making changes to your new property.

Chilled Water and Cooling Fees

In Dubai, especially for apartments, you may have to pay for chilled water and cooling fees. These fees can vary based on the size and type of property, so make sure you understand these costs before finalising your purchase.

Parking Fees

If your property doesn’t include dedicated parking, you might need to rent or purchase a parking space separately. Parking fees can be a recurring expense that you should consider.

Lifestyle Costs

Living in Dubai often comes with certain lifestyle costs, such as dining out, entertainment, and club memberships. While these expenses aren’t directly related to the property purchase, they contribute to the overall cost of living in the city.

Market Fluctuations

Property values in Dubai can be subject to fluctuations. While this isn’t a direct cost, it’s essential to be prepared for potential changes in the property’s market value, which can affect your investment.

In conclusion, buying a property in Dubai is a significant financial commitment, and there are various hidden and extra costs to consider. To make an informed decision, it’s crucial to do your due diligence, budget carefully, and work with professionals who can guide you through the process. By being aware of these costs, you can navigate the Dubai real estate market more effectively and ensure your property purchase is a successful and enjoyable experience.