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Abu Dhabi rents continue to fall

By Kevin Brass  www.thenational.ae

Abu Dhabi home rental rates continue to slide, providing opportunities for house hunters looking for bargains.

Al Raha Beach

Al Raha Beach

The average rental price dropped 9 per cent in the second quarter from the previous, according to data released Tuesday by Asteco, the property management firm.

Rates are down anywhere from 25 to 40 per cent in the last year, depending on the neighbourhood, said Paul Maisfield, general manager of Asteco’s Abu Dhabi office

“It’s a tenant-led market at the moment,” Mr Maisfield said. “A lot of supply is coming on line when demand is not there.”

Two bedroom apartments in a quality development on the Corniche are now renting for between Dh140,000 and Dh170,000 a year, the company reported. One of the few exceptions to the trend is Al Bandar on Raha Beach, where two bedroom apartments are attracting between Dh140,000 and Dh180,000.

Villas in Al Reef also witnessed a small increase in rates.

But the completion of several new projects, including apartments in Al Zeina in Al Raha and 516 townhomes in Al Reef, is likely to continue to drive down rates.

“We haven’t had an influx of new people coming in,” Mr Maisfield said. “It’s just bad timing for the market.”

More than 16,000 residential units are scheduled for completion in the next year, according to Jones Lang Lasalle. Projects on Reem Island, Raha Beach and Etihad Towers will offer new choices for renters.

“It will be an interesting six months,” Mr Maisfield said. “These developments will set important benchmarks for the market.”

A two-bedroom apartment is available for Dh125,000 a year in Sun and Sky towers on Reem Island, which started handing over units earlier this year.

“Everybody else will have to adjust accordingly,” Mr Maisfield said.

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