Pakistanis among top 10 buyers in Dubai as real estate sales surge in H1 2022

DUBAI: Dubai’s red-hot property market surged in the first half of the year as investors piled in – Russians were among the top five buyers, and Pakistanis were in eighth place – as the emirate benefits from an influx of wealth in the wake of Western sanctions.

The first half saw residential real estate transaction volumes up 60% with an 85% rise in the value of property sold, property consultancy Betterhomes said in a report.

The top buyers were from India, the United Kingdom, Italy, Russia and France, in that order.

They were followed by Canada, the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan and Egypt tied in eighth place, Lebanon and China.

Demand was boosted by geopolitical instability in Europe and mortgage buyers looking to get in ahead of well-telegraphed interest rate hikes as central banks tackle inflation, Betterhomes said.

Reuters reported earlier this year that Russians were pouring money into Dubai real estate as they seek a financial haven in the wake of Western sanctions on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine.

“The market has faced growing headwinds in the form of rising interest rates and a strengthening dollar, but has so far proven to be robust with little sign of slowing,” Betterhomes said.

In the first half of the year, a record 37,762 units were sold, it said, citing Dubai Land Department data. Total transactions in the residential property market amounted to nearly 89 billion dirhams ($24.23 billion), it added.

Dubai’s property market began recovering from 2020’s severe downturn early last year with buyers snapping up luxury units as the emirate eased pandemic restrictions faster than most cities around the world.

However, S&P Global Ratings said in October that Dubai’s real estate recovery was fragile and uneven, and an oversupply of residential properties would pressure prices in the long run.

Luxury property transactions were up 87% versus the first half of last year, while apartments made up 62% of all transactions, Betterhomes said.

Investors dominated sales, making up 68% of all buyers, up 10% compared with a year earlier.