Expats have plenty of options when it comes to renting an apartment or other residencies in the UAE. The country is home of luxury for fascinating lifestyles, moderate residential building equipped with all comforts of life. The country is safe, secure and very friendly due to the majority of expats in the UAE. Emirates like Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Sharjah are expensive, and lifestyle can be compared to the cities of the west. Moreover, renting apartments, villas, or townhouses is very easy when done according to rules and procedures. The process is critical to know because it's the most necessary expense that every expat had to bear. 

Most expatriates opt to rent when they arrive at Emirates, but they don't know how to and where to rent exactly. This helpful guide developed for you to understand, the procedure of renting, the steps involved and things that you need to take care when renting a property in the UAE.


Renting property in the UAE can be a daunting task if you haven't had enough information about the resources, places, and average amounts. Communities and neighborhoods in Emirates had different prices, depending upon the areas, its locality, amenities and access to other locations. Compared to the other parts of the world, UAE is one of the most expensive places for renting. While there is no official data is available, reports suggest that expatriates spend almost 60% of their incomes in rents and utilities. 

Renting in the Emirates is a serious business. Some reports claim that 35-40% of total income reserves for rents. To save some money, you need to find a property for rent within 25% of your CTC (Contract Target Cost) budget. 

Rents in the country are managed by the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA). If you're in the UAE, you can use Rental Calculator to get an idea about the rents in different cities. Managed by the national authorities, the rental process is transparent but even though before renting one should have to do proper research about the areas, average rents, transport, and amenities near like parks, malls, retail stores and others. The country had already passed the demands, and countless units are available. Moreover, every year new units are coming. 


The properties in the United Arab Emirates are not only about the higher-prices and luxury apartments to live. Infect the country also offers different kinds in residential & commercial livings. Let's discuss some types of properties in UAE that expats can rent. 


• Studio

These are the most common kind of living areas in the United Arab Emirates. Studios are starting option and best for individuals. Renting a studio can cost you around ADE 15,000 up to 40,000 depending upon the location.

• Apartments 

They start from a studio to an apartment going up to extraordinary, extravagant penthouses. The size of apartments can be up to 4-bedrooms. Further, the newer apartment buildings come up latest technological integrations., swimming pools, faster lifts, and round the clock securities. A 1-bedroom apartment starts for ADE-40.000, depending upon the size can climb up to 100K annually.  

• Villas in compounds

Villas in compounds come with 24-hour security and a long list of amenities. Usually, these sought of villas are in gated communities with everything inside. The shopping areas, pharmacies, parks, community centres, clubs, gyms, playgrounds, kids playing area and so on. You can rent a 4-bedroom villa in these gated communities.  

• Standalone villas and townhouses

Standalone and townhouses are large villas with size up to 5-6 Bedrooms. The standalone villas and townhouses come with private swimming pools and a large garden and with open spaces. Depending upon the contract, maintenance fee may be the part of the deal. 

• Serviced Apartments & Hotel Apartments 

These kinds of residential units are best for short-term rentals. They are starting from a few weeks to months. The good thing is that there isn't any paperwork involved. The residents can start living by depositing only identification documents and small upfronts. Rents of services apartments also include electricity, WIFI, and water payments. 

• Furnished and unfurnished homes

Apartments and villas are available in both furnished and unfurnished. Furnished accommodations cost more, but they mostly prefer for short-terms. People mostly like to go for non-furnished to ensure everything according to their standards. 


Almost all the emirates have benchmarked living styles which facilitates its residents with highest living standards. But few emirates like Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah are more preferred by the expats since these emirates hold most businesses and are tourist hubs. Listed below are some of the popular places to rent a property in the United Arab Emirates. 

These lists are made according to the lifestyles, rents, and overall ambience against rents. 

Saadiyat Island (Abu Dhabi) 

it's one of the most expensive neighbourhoods in Abu Dhabi with huge villas complexes, sunny beach fronts, and five-start hotels. Somehow, for many its isn't affordable, but those who can afford have the opportunity to view the fascinating areas of Abu Dhabi. Apartment in Saadiyat Island starts from ADE 50,000 annually (Depending upon locations).

Grand Mosque District (Abu Dhabi)

as the name suggests, the area is in the proximity of the great grand mosque, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque which is also one of the most famous landmarks of UAE. The grand mosque district is located at the outskirts of Abu Dhabi, and one of the most affordable area to rent an apartment. Apartment in Grand mosque district starts from ADE 40,000 annually (Depending upon locations).

• Al Ghadeer (Abu Dhabi) 

It is also one of the best communities to live in UAE, located outside of Abu Dhabi, with the border of Dubai. It is one of the most affordable places to rent an apartment. The community had Studios, apartments, villas and townhouses. Rental apartment in Grand mosque district starts from ADE 25,000 annually (Depending upon locations).

• Dubai Marina 

The areas are one of the top attractions in Dubai. The community is at the walking distance from the sunny beaches with crystal-clear waters. The area had best night nightlife, shopping malls, apartments, are available here. The average rent of a 1-bedroom apartment in Dubai Marina is ADE 40,000 annually. 

• Downtown Dubai. 

Downtown Dubai is one of the most famous places to rent an apartment in Dubai. Located at the top place epicentre of Burj Khalifa, whereas financial district on the other side of town. The downtown areas are also the home for the world largest mall, the dancing fountains, and the world tallest buildings. Downtown Dubai is an expensive district to live and depends upon the affordability. The rents for 1BHK starts from 75,000 Annually. 

• Bur Dubai 

Bur Dubai is one of the most famous community to live in Dubai, and it is also the centre of the City. The community is one of the oldest in Dubai, very affordable rents, and connectivity to every corner of the City. Compared to other parts of City the rents are very low and can start from 20,000 Annually.

Compared to Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Sharjah is less expensive, and the cost of living expense is also low. 

• Al Majaz (Sharjah) 

Al Majaz neighbourhood is considered as the most popular areas in Sharjah. The area had comprehensive options for renting a flat in Sharjah. The size can be between 2-5bedroom apartment. Due to its lesser cost of living expense, this emirate is also favourable for families. 


• Al Taawun (Sharjah)

This neighbourhood is also at the top of most favourite residential places to rent an apartment in Sharjah for families. A 2-bedroom apartment is available for families with an average rent of ADE-35K and 

• Muwailah (Sharjah)

Muwailah is also the most searched community on the internet for a renting 1-bedroom apartment in Sharjah. The average rent can start from ADE 22K annually. 




  • AL FURJAN Apartment 68,576 Villa 128,871
  • AL HABTOOR CITY Apartment 91,572
  • AL KHAIL HEIGHTS Apartment 40,504
  • ARABIAN RANCHES Villa 105,651
  • ARABIAN RANCHES 2 Villa 132,561
  • BARSHA HEIGHTS (TECOM) Apartment 68,986
  • BUSINESS BAY Apartment 83,313
  • CITY WALK Apartment 144,999
  • CULTURE VILLAGE Apartment 79,341
  • DAMAC HILLS (AKOYA BY DAMAC) Apartment 65,469 Villa 152,451
  • DISCOVERY GARDENS Apartment 30,593
  • DOWNTOWN BURJ KHALIFA Apartment 100,266
  • DUBAI FESTIVAL CITY Apartment 115,021
  • DUBAI INVESTMENTS PARK Apartment 82,909 Villa 158,565
  • DUBAI MARINA Apartment 87,939
  • DUBAI RESIDENCE COMPLEX Apartment 30,876
  • DUBAI SCIENCE PARK (DUBIOTECH) Apartment 57,389 Villa 184,388
  • DUBAI SILICON OASIS Apartment 38,250 Villa 135,820
  • DUBAI SOUTH (DUBAI WORLD CENTRAL) Apartment 39,507 Townhouse 77,815
  • DUBAI SPORTS CITY Apartment 39,010 Villa 187,100
  • DUBAI STUDIO CITY Apartment 43,350
  • EMIRATES LIVING Apartment 77,540 Villa 210,496



  • AL RAHA BEACH Apartment 65,000 Villa 270,000
  • AL GHADEER Apartment 35,000 Villa 85,000
  • AL REEF Apartment 80,000 Villa 130,000
  • YAS ISLAND Apartment 46,000 Villa
  • KHALIFA CITY A Apartment 46,000 Villa 150,000
  • MUHAMMAD BIN ZAYAED CITY Apartment 42,000 Villas 130,000


Mostly, expats had access to the internet; finding an affordable property for rent isn't a challenging task to do. Some of the most popular websites are: 

·     Property finder

·     Bayut

·     Zeekeez

·     Dubizzle

Additional if you're good at print media, then you can find some good properties at newspapers such as:

·     The Gulf News

·     Khaleej Times

·     The National

·     Gulf Today

Agents or companies list most properties, but there are many properties ads which are directly posted by the landlords. You can save a bit by contacting directly. Almost all the agent can speak English very well, make a call, tie up a meeting and request him a viewing date as per your convenience.


The rental security in the UAE is generally 5% of the total rented value and payment as upfront. The amount is refundable on the completion of the term. Once you move out, and if the landlord is satisfied with the condition of his property. The owners always check outstanding payments like bills and maintenance charges.  

In Dubai, the housing fee is applied for water and electricity bills, which is equal to 5% of total monthly rents. For Instant, if your annual rent is ADE, 50,000 and monthly rent is 4200, then 5% amount ADE 210 will be your housing fee. Apart from that, in Dubai, you have to pay "Ejari" fee whenever you have a new contract or a renewal of the contract


Most contracts in the UAE are annual. If you're planning for a short stay, then look for short-term rentals because breaking a rental Contract in UAE can cost you a lot. Once the tenant and landlords sign the contract, you the law of the land doesn't allow you to breach the contract. 

Even certain circumstances, if the tenants want to break the contracts, then he/she must give a 2-month notice period and a penalty payment. The standard amount of penalty is 2-month rent. 


The rental dispute is not very common, but they do happen. All the emirates had dispute resolution council. Rental Dispute Settlement Center is located at Dubai Land Department's head office. Abu Dhabi also had a counsel for the same. 

In the care of any dispute, you need the following documents:

• Proof of ID's (tenant and Landlords) 

• Original Copies of Passports/Visa 

• Original attested Rent Contract 

• Rental Deposit Receipt


All the properties in the UAE are required to arrange and pay electricity, water and other telecommunication bills by themselves. At the time of hiring the apartment, working cooling units are the responsibilities of the landlord. If you're willing to pay a small amount to an agent, there its right way and can save your time. 

Useful Resource

• Ejari Lease Management

• Dubai Land Department

• Judicial Department

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