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Buying Process

Property Buying Process in Dubai Explained

Buying a property in Dubai is quite different to most western countries however if done correctly it is normally a relatively smooth and straightforward process. Once you have found the property of your choice and successfully negotiated on price the process looks as set out below:

Property Buying Process in Dubai Explained

An average property transaction in Dubai takes 30 days to complete from the date on which the Agreement for Sale (MOU) is signed. This time frame can and does vary depending on factors such as whether the buyer/seller is an individual or a company and whether finance is involved.

Transfer Procedures

Much like the time frames the transfer process will vary slightly depending on the type of transaction i.e. cash to finance, finance to finance. The typical process for a cash buyer and a cash seller is a follows:

  • Buyer and seller agree terms through the help of a registered agent.
  • A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is signed and a deposit (usually 10%) is paid by the buyer and in some cases by both the buyer and seller.
  • The parties meet at the offices of the developer to apply for a No Objection Certificate (‘NOC’) to sell the property.
  • The developer will usually issue the NOC against a payment of a fee once the developer is satisfied that any amount due to the developer in the form of service charges have been settled in full. The time frame for a standard NOC is usually 5 working days however the buyer and seller do normally have a option of applying for an express NOC in which case it is ready within 48 hours.
  • Once the NOC is issued, the partied are able to go to the office of the Dubai Land Department or a Registration Office to officially transfer ownership. The Buyer will need to bring along all of the required documents as well as managers cheques made payable to the seller and the Land Department for all applicable transfer fees. Once formalities are completed, a new title deed will be issued in the name of the buyer.

Documents Required

Individual Buyer:

  • Original Passport
  • Visa page
  • Emirates ID


  • Certificate of Incorporation
  • Memorandum and Articles of Understanding
  • Board of Resolution
  • Power of Attorney for designated signatory
  • Certificate of good standing

*All company documents must be translated into Arabic. Documents required may vary depending on type of company


Fees And Charges

The following fees will generally apply to the sale and purchase of real estate in Dubai:

  • NOC fees  – these can range between AED 500 and AED 5,000 and are payable to the developer, usually by the seller.
  • Real Estate Agent’s commission – 2% of property purchase price.
  • Transfer fees – 4% of the purchase price + AED 540 along with a AED 4,000 Admin Transfer fee (payable in cash)
  • Mortgage registration fees (if applicable) are calculated at a rate of 0.25% of the registered loan amount and paid to the Dubai Land Department.
  • Developers ask for their annual service charges to be paid in advance and buyers should therefore account for their pro rata share upfront.

Now that you are familiar with the buying process check out our Buying Tips page.