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Abu Dhabi's real estate market stable in Q3.

Average residential leasing and sales prices in Abu Dhabi, UAE, remained relatively steady in the third quarter with the apartment and villa sales year-on-year still offering returns of 28 and 14 per cent respectively, said a report.

The Abu Dhabi real estate market was left relatively unchanged, with little or no movement on average in residential sales or leasing prices, according to Asteco.

The modest price increases and decreases were recorded in localised communities, however growing confidence and improved investor sentiment is likely to support sustainable growth in the short to medium term, stated the property expert in its third quarter real estate report for Abu Dhabi.

Although average apartment sales prices changed little quarter-on-quarter, a 28 per cent increase was witnessed annually to end of the third quarter of 2014.

This trend was mirrored by villa sales prices, which were flat during the third quarter, despite the limited availability of stock, but still achieved an average annual increase of 14 per cent across the market, it stated.

Jerry Oates, the general manager at Asteco Abu Dhabi, said: "The popularity of developments within investment areas is a trend that continues to be simulated quarter on quarter as sales prices firm up. The sales volumes achieved by Aldar on the Ansam and Al Hadeel projects at Al Raha Beach and Yas Island have highlighted the robust demand for the right type of product within Investment Zones."

The market also received a considerable vote of confidence with the launch of the Mamsha Al Saadiyat on Saadiyat Island.

The 400 plus luxury residential unit, comprising of one to four-bedroom apartments and townhouses commands an average sales price of Dh2,000 ($544) per sq ft, and will act as a catalyst for additional projects expected to be launched in 2015, further outlining the growth potential over the next three to four years.

"Market sustainability will be enhanced still further by a range of new to market developments in 2015, this, combined with a more transparent market for UAE national investors through Abu Dhabi's rental index, which benchmarks and regulates maximum rental increases will encourage future growth in the UAE capital," he added.

Rental rates for prime residential apartments in Abu Dhabi remained relatively stable with certain developments such as Sun & Sky Towers achieving close to full occupancy. Rates in Marina Square witnessed a decrease of 3 per cent, as Reem Island became more competitive due to a number of new units coming on line, including The Gate Towers, Aldar's landmark development.

For low end properties on Abu Dhabi Island, including Central Abu Dhabi, the Corniche and Khalidiya/Bateen, a quarter-on-quarter decrease of 5 per cent, 2 per cent and 4 per cent respectively with prices for a two-bed apartment topping out at Dh90,000 ($24,497), Dh80,000 ($21,775) and Dh100,000 ($27,219) for each location.

Investment areas such as Reef Downtown saw no growth quarter-on-quarter however witnessed an annual increase of 26 per cent.

The rental market for villas echoed that of apartments as high-end villa rental rates remained stable despite limited new supply.

A three-bed property on Abu Dhabi Island in Bloom Gardens saw a quarter-on-quarter increase of 5 per cent averaging between Dh190,000 ($51,717) and Dh240,000 ($65,327).

The office market leveled out in the mid to high-end areas, Grade A office space achieved net effective rental rates estimated at Dh1,700 ($462) per sq m for fully fitted space; an indication that rental rates have now bottomed out.

Significant improvements in infrastructure, retail, available services as well as a range of competitive rates and incentives has had a positive impact on demand for offices on Reem Island, particularly for both Sky Tower at Shams Abu Dhabi and Tamouh Tower at Marina Square.-TradeArabia News Service

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Publication:TradeArabia (Manama, Bahrain)
Geographic Code:7UNIT
Date:Oct 22, 2014
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