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RENTING A PROPERTY IN DUBAI – everything you need to know!

If you are looking to find a new property to rent in Dubai,  we are here to guide you through every step of your rental journey

Whether you are looking for an apartment, villa, townhouse or penthouse, HMS homes can help to find your dream home.

We have put together a handy guide for you to refer to throughout your property search, offering insider advice and all of the information you need to thoroughly equip you in your property search.



You must be a resident in Dubai to rent a property. Documents required:-

Emirates ID

Residence Visa


UAE Issued Cheque Book


Make a list of things that are important to you when it comes to your new home. When you scroll through the property portals, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by choice but identifying  the key aspects of your search will help you (and us) to zone in on what you are really looking for.

Some things to consider are:-


Initially, the most important part of your property search is where you want to live.  Dubai has so many brilliant communities that it can be a minefield when trying to decide where you want to live

Be a tourist – go for a walk or drive around the area you are interested in moving to and explore the surroundings. Perhaps there is a certain community or development that has caught your eye.  Does it need to be close to a school, beside the beach or perhaps you need to be near public transport? These are all important factors to consider. Ask around through friends or community Facebook groups and ask of other’s experiences in these areas or within a particular tower or community!

Budget & Furnishings

What is the absolute maximum you are willing to spend? How many cheques can you pay in? Is the property to be furnished? These are all questions you will be asked immediately to determine the range of properties you will be able to view.  Be honest with your agent and give them all of the facts, this will better equip them for securing your property at negotiation time further down the line!

Move in date

When is the earliest possible date you can move and when do you absolutely need to move by? Is your lease coming to an end or do you have an option to extend for a few months if you don’t find the right place? The level of urgency is important and you should always communicate this with your agent.  Most landlords will want an immediate move in date and even a few weeks can make the difference between securing your property and losing out.

Size / number of bedrooms

How many bedrooms do you need? Do you need a huge amount of storage or is extra living space the deal breaker?  The total area specified includes a balcony or garden and in a two storey apartment or villa will also include the staircase.

Other things to consider

The Facilities and local amenities, Commuter access, View,  Outdoor space and Parking


It is important to understand what you will pay in fees and costs before you begin your property search so that you can give your agent the correct budget! If your budget is to include your deposit and agency fee then make sure your agent understands this so they can plan the properties to view accordingly:-

  • Rental – usually paid in 1 to 4 post-dated cheques, issued during signing of the tenancy contract.
  • 5% Refundable Deposit (often this is 10% if furnished) – Paid upon agreeing your tenancy contract. This is a current dated cheque and is cashed immediately. Refundable upon vacating your property
  • 5% + VAT Agency Fee – current dated and issued along with the rental cheques
  • EJARI – AED 220
  • DEWA Deposit – DEWA is the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority and is a mandatory deposit of AED 2,000 for apartments / AED 4,000 for villas refundable upon disconnection at the end of your tenancy. The connection fee is AED 135 inc. VAT
  • Chiller Fees / Palm District Cooling – applicable only in certain areas – your agent will be able to advise if this is something pertaining to
    Internet provider – Du / Etisalat – there is a connection / activation fee which will be included in your first bill
  • Housing / Municipality Fees – 5% of your annual rent included in your DEWA bill



Scrolling through the property portals to find your ideal home can be overwhelming and at times, frustrating.

Finding a good agent will make the process far easier and less stressful for you and this is where HMS homes can help. Someone that understands your needs and will take you to a selection of suitable properties within your budget is paramount in your search for a new home.

Once you connect with one of our agents specialising in the area/s you are looking in, agree a mutually suitable day for viewing and visit multiple properties back to back.  If you have already been viewing before with another agent, make sure you communicate this so you do not want to end up viewing the same property twice.


Once you have found a property you like at the right price, make an offer.  The Dubai rental market is fast and a well priced property will often have multiple tenants interested so it is important to move fast.  Do not make an offer on somewhere unless you really do want it.

Are prices negotiable? Often, yes.  Your agent should make this clear when you enquire on their property.  A good agent will have a strong relationship with their owners and know when there is room for negotiation.  The less cheques you can pay in, the more room you will have to negotiate.

Bring your cheque book with you when you go viewing – it can happen that fast!


Once your offer has been accepted and the terms have been agreed, our HMS homes administration team will now draw up the tenancy contract.

To enable HMS homes to draw up your tenancy contract, we will require the following documents from you:-

Passport Copy

Residence Visa Copy

Emirates ID Copy

Deposit Cheque in the landlord’s name

Post-dated Rental Cheque/s in the landlord’s name – always write the rental cheques to the name of the landlord and no one else

Agency Fee Cheque (to be addressed to the real estate company and not the broker’s name)

Once you have provided your documents, your tenancy contract will be drafted and sent over to both parties for final approval.

Please note, your agent should complete their due diligence with regards to checking ownership of the property.  This is a simple step of checking the title deed which can be completed via the broker app or at a land department office.


You will meet with your agent and sign the tenancy contract which will then be taken to the landlord to sign if you are not signing at the same time.

Once both parties have signed the tenancy agreement, your agent will then hand over the cheques to your landlord.

After your tenancy contract has been signed by both you and the landlord, you will need to register your lease with Ejari and then connect your Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA)

Ejari is the process of legalising your tenancy contract.  You cannot connect DEWA without Ejari.


1.Welcome E-mail

HMS homes will send you a welcome e-mail introducing you to your new landlord as well as giving you all of the information and documents you require in order to complete Ejari. You will now be able to liaise with your landlord directly on any maintenance issues and anything else pertaining to your new home.

2.Move-In Permit

Your agent should advise whether or not you need a move-in permit.  This depends on the community or developer – Emaar buildings in particular always require a move-in permit and this must be applied for with at least 5 working days notice.  You must have Ejari in order to apply for a move in permit.



For any maintenance issues you come across during your tenancy you must contact the landlord directly for this.  Tenancy contracts include, as standard, a clause which states that any maintenance under an agreed amount is the responsibility of the tenant and anything above, the landlord.


If you are renting a 1 bedroom apartment, the likelihood is the apartment will come with only 1 parking space.  If you require an additional parking space, often you can rent a space from another owner directly within your building.

3.Renewal and End of tenancy

If you wish to renew your tenancy contract, HMS homes can facilitate this and will contact you a few months in advance of your tenancy ending.

If you wish to vacate, legally you must give your landlord 3 months notice in writing in advance of your contract expiration – so if you plan to vacate after 12 months this must be done at 9 months at a minimum. Failure to do so can result in the landlord taking the dispute to RERA.

If you are looking to rent a property in Dubai, visit our property portal on our website, get in touch with our team today on +971 (0) 4 428 4700 or e-mail

Keep an eye out for our next blog post:- A guide to buying!

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