Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Despite peak construction boom, Abu Dhabi still faces housing shortage?

In a city, such as Abu Dhabi, which is so full of new real estate projects and in peak of construction boom, it is a startling fact to note that thousands are left struggling to find suitable properties to rent, reports Gulf News.

According to Property Consultant and Director of Global Hills, Diana Stebbins, a solution to this property hunt would finally be found during 2009, when people could buy and move into their own accommodation. However, for now, the villas are divided into four or six partitions for accommodation of bachelors and dual occupancy units.

The landlords and developers are taking full advantage of the current demand for housing, and have found this as a suitable opportunity to increase rent rates and prices.

A resident, who has been residing in Abu Dhabi for the past thirteen years, says that during the past two years, it has been shocking to note that some places have even doubled in rent rates. On the other hand, the landlords do not have much property to rent, as during the past. Even in case the property is available, it is sold out or rented within 24 or 48 hours.

The Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry has made it clear that the housing situation in only going to get worse, as by 2008, atleast 13,000 units would be required to keep pace with the demand.

Although, the endless campaign ads by development companies, gives a ray of hope initially that the demand may level out supply, a closer look would reveal that such properties are mostly businesses, hotels or housings meant for 'only' the upper-class who could afford to pay atleast Dh.15,000 to 20,000 a month for a "modern" single bedroom apartment.

This way, an average foreigner, moving into Abu Dhabi, hoping to live in a decent apartment and saving the extra money, is left in the lurch, as for those with an average income of Dh.12,000 a month, it is nearly impossible to save. With such a scenario, saving is the last thing that a single-income family could think of, as the money earned is being spent instantly.

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