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  The buyer has clearly defaulted on his obligation to purchase the property within 30 days of signing the SPA. Hence, you may choose to terminate the SPA and keep the 10% deposit. If there were agents involved in the transaction, they will also be entitled to a fee from the 10% deposit in accordance with the terms and conditions stated in the SPA.  
 
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  The transfer fee prescribed by the Land Department is 4%. The Land Department does not have guidelines as to who should be paying the transfer fee. In a seller’s market, the seller can state that the buyer will pay the whole of the transfer fee. Hence, you may choose to pay 2% of the transfer fee if you wish to do so, there is no obligation from your part.
 
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  You will have likely signed a Seller's Agent Form appointing the Seller as your agent. In the Form, the agent might have included the consideration amount of 2% of the property price. Otherwise, the 2% fee may be mentioned as part of the signed SPA. If it has not been agreed on within the Agent Appointment form or the SPA then you are not obliged to pay it.
 
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  It is beneficial to appoint an agent exclusively for your property. The agent will put more effort into advertising the property and sharing it with premium clientele. Moreover, having an exclusive agent also allows you to develop a relationship where the agent will better understand your needs hence expediting the sale process.
 
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  You should not sign an SPA with a Buyer if the Buyer is not a cash buyer and has not already obtained a pre-approval for a mortgage. Not having a pre-approved mortgage greatly increases the chances where the purchase will not go through.
 
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  It is possible to ask your developer for compensation of the delay in handing over the property. However, this depends largely on what you agreed with your developer as per your Sale & Purchase Agreement. You need to check the SPA for anticipated completion date and expected delays. Then it is up to you to negotiate with your developer on what would be a reasonable compensation for the delays. They will not pay you the compensation in cash, but they may compensate you by reducing the sum of the final installment of your property.
 
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It is possible to obtain a two-year residence visa if the property is valued over AED 1 million, fully paid and having no mortgage on it. You will have to apply for an approval from the Land Department before obtaining the visa. The residency fees vary from time to time so it is best to check with the Land Department directly on the total costs associated with obtaining the residence visa.
 
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  For Abu Dhabi, it is best to check the trade license of the agency and the visa copy/labor card copy of the agent to ensure that the agent is sponsored by the company.
 
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For Dubai, there a two ways to check the validity of an agency, the first is by requesting them to send their trade license details and broker’s license. The other way to check is by looking through Dubai Land Department’s website at this link http://www.dubailand.gov.ae/English/Real_Estate_Licenses/EngBrokersList.aspx
 
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  The developer should be able to provide you with the following details of the project:
  1. The location of the Real Estate Unit,
  2. the programme for its completion and any known delays in the programme,
  3. the contractual date of completion and handover,
  4. the extent of the Common Areas and facilities within the Jointly Owned Property and
the programme for the completion of the Common Areas and facilities and any known delays in the programme,
  1. the Developer’s number and the Project’s number. You can check the Approved Developer List here http://www.dubailand.gov.ae/English/Real_Estate_Licenses/EngDevelopersList.aspx
  2. the escrow account’s number
Failure by the developer to provide the above details puts you in a serious risk should you decide to purchase the property.
 
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  Your developer will call you in their offices to complete the balance of payment for the property. The developer will then give you a no objection certificate to obtain the title deed. You will then proceed to the Land Department and apply to get the title deed issued in your name.
 
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  For Abu Dhabi buyers, the Abu Dhabi Municipality Land Department does not issue title deeds in the name of the buyer if the buyer is an expat. Hence, the expat should obtain a handover certificate from the developer proving that he owns the property.
 
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  If you have stated a special condition in the SPA that compensation will be awarded in addition to the deposit, then you will be entitled to it. Otherwise, there will be no additional compensation provided.
 
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  If you have stated a special condition in the SPA that compensation will be awarded in addition to the deposit, then you will be entitled to it. Otherwise, there will be no additional compensation provided.
 
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Your bank will not provide you with a mortgage if you do not have 50% of the property amount paid in cash. Having said that, you should treat off plan properties as a high risk investment because you are not in control of when the project will be finished. Moreover, your bank will keep charging you interest on your mortgage even if the project is delayed.
 
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  Your bank will not provide you with a mortgage if you do not have 50% of the property amount paid in cash. Having said that, you should treat off plan properties as a high risk investment because you are not in control of when the project will be finished. Moreover, your bank will keep charging you interest on your mortgage even if the project is delayed.
 
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A telephone call from the landlord is not sufficient to vacate the property. As per the Dubai tenancy law, the landlord has to provide you with a Notice of Eviction ( NOE) at least one year prior to the date of eviction. Also, this notice has to be either through the notary public or by registered mail.
 
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In Abu Dhabi, can the landlord increase the rent without any limit?

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Based on the Executive Council's decision no. (32) for the year 2012, all rent amounts from 10 November 2013 onwards are negotiated and agreed upon by the landlord and the tenant. Hence, the landlord can increase the rent without any limitation. However, the rental market will most likely determine the average rental increases and the maximum increase a landlord can impose on the tenant.
 
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If the landlord requested you to sign a letter confirming that you will vacate the property after 12 months, then this letter shall be deemed legal and binding. Hence, as a tenant, you will need to abide by the letter which you have signed and vacate the property within the specified time period. Should you go to the rent committee to request a renewal of the tenancy, the rental committee will most likely dismiss your claim.
 
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  Under the Tenancy Law, a tenancy contract does not terminate automatically. Instead, it renews automatically, on the same terms, until either parties agree to change the terms or terminate it. In the event the landlord wants to change any of the terms, he must notify the tenant at least 90 days in advance. Notification alone, however, is only the first step. The tenant then has to agree. If the event the tenant does not agree to the changes in the contract, the parties should take the dispute to the Rent Committee. Without either an agreement or a Rent Committee judgment, a landlord cannot unilaterally change the terms of the tenancy agreement. Neither can the landlord force the tenant to sign a new agreement. Secondly, the RDSC does not recognize limited term tenancy contracts and it will dismiss such terms if and when a claim is lodged with them. Hence, instead of amending the provisions of the tenancy agreement, the solution is to provide the tenant with a valid notice for eviction (NOE). The benefit of this notice is that you do not have to wait until the renewal date of the tenancy agreement to evict the tenant. The eviction becomes effective on the date of expiry of the last day on the notice.
 
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  It is unusual for a landlord not to be reached for an extended period of time. In such cases it is advised to investigate if the landlord has an agent or next of kin who could reach out to the landlord. In any case, if the landlord has not sent you any notice for eviction beforehand, your tenancy contract will be renewed automatically. As a precaution, you can send the landlord a letter confirming your willingness to renew the tenancy at least 90 days before the expiration of the current term of the tenancy. If the landlord or his agent still do not respond at the time of renewal of the tenancy, then you can go to RERA and deposit the rent cheque there. RERA will provide you with a receipt of the cheque and they will attempt to contact the landlord to request him to pick it up from them.
 
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  Many landlords include a non-renewable clause in the Tenancy Agreement. However, such clauses are not applicable by law and RERA does not recognize them. So you may choose to ignore such a clause . If the landlord wishes to evict you from the property, he must provide you with a written notice to the tenant 12 months prior to the contract’s expiry providing that such notice is sent through the Notary Public or by registered mail.
 
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As per the Tenancy Law, it is strictly illegal for the landlord to cut the DEWA from the tenant during the course of the tenancy. The best thing you could have done in your previous tenure was to approach the nearest police station informing them that your landlord has disconnected the DEWA. The police will immediately inform he landlord to restore the DEWA to the property or otherwise the landlord may face criminal charges.
 
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Pets are a matter of much debate.   The Tenancy Law is silent on this matter. Whether pets are allowed or not is an issue that is strictly between the landlord and the tenant:  
  • If the Tenancy Agreement states that pets are not allowed, then the tenant may be requested to evict the property before the expiry date of the contract. However, the tenant will not be fined during this process
  • If the Tenancy Agreement does not state that pets are not allowed, the tenant will then be allowed to keep pets in the property so long as they do not cause a nuisance to the neighborhood and the community.
  • If the Tenancy Agreement does state that pets are allowed, the tenant will then be allowed to keep pets in the property so long as they do not cause a nuisance to the neighborhood and the community.
Moreover, many communities and property management companies do not allow pets on the property even if the landlord and tenant are agree to it. In such cases, it is up to the tenant to prove to the community management that the landlord has no objection to keeping pets in the landlord’s property.
 
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  Pets are a matter of much debate.   The Tenancy Law is silent on this matter. Whether pets are allowed or not is an issue that is strictly between the landlord and the tenant:  
  • If the Tenancy Agreement states that pets are not allowed, then the tenant may be requested to evict the property before the expiry date of the contract. However, the tenant will not be fined during this process
  • If the Tenancy Agreement does not state that pets are not allowed, the tenant will then be allowed to keep pets in the property so long as they do not cause a nuisance to the neighborhood and the community.
  • If the Tenancy Agreement does state that pets are allowed, the tenant will then be allowed to keep pets in the property so long as they do not cause a nuisance to the neighborhood and the community.
Moreover, many communities and property management companies do not allow pets on the property even if the landlord and tenant are agree to it. In such cases, it is up to the tenant to prove to the community management that the landlord has no objection to keeping pets in the landlord’s property.
 
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  Unfortunately, verbal agreements are not considered as binding in tenancy matters. If you have not signed a tenancy agreement then the landlord may choose to vary the rent until such time where you sign an agreement with each other.
 
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  Unfortunately, verbal agreements are not considered as binding in tenancy matters. If you have not signed a tenancy agreement then the landlord may choose to vary the rent until such time where you sign an agreement with each other.
 
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  From the date of appointing the agent, it is the obligation of the agent to ensure that once a tenancy contract is signed that the tenant will take full possession of the property. For the agent to inform you that the property has been rented out means that he has defaulted in his obligations and you should request the security deposit to be refunded in addition to the agent’s commission.
 
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  From the date of appointing the agent, it is the obligation of the agent to ensure that once a tenancy contract is signed that the tenant will take full possession of the property. For the agent to inform you that the property has been rented out means that he has defaulted in his obligations and you should request the security deposit to be refunded in addition to the agent’s commission.
 
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For both Abu Dhabi and Dubai, there are two alternatives which you may take in this case:  
  • Agree with the landlord to vacate the property. 2 months is standard unless you and your landlord agree different Different terms the landlord will most likely ask for a penalty e.g. One month or two months’ rent but you will be able to terminate the lease and take the remaining part of the rent. Given the current state of the market, rents are on the rise so the landlord will more likely than not agree to you vacating the property so he may be able to command a higher rent for the new tenant.
  • Agree with the landlord to sublease the property. Provided the landlord gives written permission, you will be able to sublease the property and gain benefit from it until the date of expiry of the lease.

 
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  For both Abu Dhabi and Dubai, there are two alternatives which you may take in this case:  
  • Agree with the landlord to vacate the property. 2 months is standard unless you and your landlord agree different Different terms the landlord will most likely ask for a penalty e.g. One month or two months’ rent but you will be able to terminate the lease and take the remaining part of the rent. Given the current state of the market, rents are on the rise so the landlord will more likely than not agree to you vacating the property so he may be able to command a higher rent for the new tenant.
  • Agree with the landlord to sublease the property. Provided the landlord gives written permission, you will be able to sublease the property and gain benefit from it until the date of expiry of the lease.

 
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For Abu Dhabi residents, if the landlord is an Emirati national, request to see the title deed to the property. If the landlord is an expat, request to see a handover certificate from the developer stating that the expat is the current owner of the property. This is because in Abu Dhabi, title deeds to property are not yet provided for expats.
 
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  For Dubai residents, do not take the lease unless you see a title deed. Moreover, if the agent is asking you for a security deposit without even showing you the title deed, its more often than not that it is a scam and should be avoided.
 
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  In both Abu Dhabi and Dubai, it is the landlord’s responsibility to maintain the property by paying the service charges due. The tenant should not be prevented from using the facilities during the course of the tenancy and the developer/facilities management company should address this issue with the landlord only. You can address the landlord with this issue and request him to kindly settle his outstanding service charges. Otherwise, the landlord is breaching his obligations as per the tenancy agreement and the tenant can request the landlord for compensation as a result of such default. If the community is not allowing the tenant to use the facilities, the tenant can provide the tenancy agreement to the community as proof that he is only benefiting from the use of the property. If by then the community still does not allow the tenant to use the facilities, the tenant can call the police to settle the matter on the spot.
 
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  In both Abu Dhabi and Dubai, it is the landlord’s responsibility to maintain the property by paying the service charges due. The tenant should not be prevented from using the facilities during the course of the tenancy and the developer/facilities management company should address this issue with the landlord only. You can address the landlord with this issue and request him to kindly settle his outstanding service charges. Otherwise, the landlord is breaching his obligations as per the tenancy agreement and the tenant can request the landlord for compensation as a result of such default. If the community is not allowing the tenant to use the facilities, the tenant can provide the tenancy agreement to the community as proof that he is only benefitting from the use of the property. If by then the community still does not allow the tenant to use the facilities, the tenant can call the police to settle the matter on the spot. It would not be feasible to file a claim with RERA unless the tenant wishes to terminate the tenancy and request his rent back.
 
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  RERA regulations state that a security deposit of usually equivalent to 4 weeks rent must be provided with the Ejari contract. The security deposit should be lodged with RERA when registering the Ejari contract. Moreover, the security deposit is refundable when you exit the property providing it is returned to the landlord in the same condition as when you entered the property.
 
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  The best thing to do is to check the Rent Increase Calculator http://www.dubailand.gov.ae/English/eServices/RentalIncreaseCalculatorEN.aspx Make sure to input the area, property type, etc. and the resulting figure will determine whether the landlord’s increase in rent is justified.
 
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The Tenancy Law strictly provides that a Notice for Eviction must be sent either through Notary Public or registered mail. Hence, by law a notice sent by email is considered insufficient to constitute a legal Notice for Eviction. However, it is best advised not respond to the email as the Rent Dispute Settlement Committee may construe responses to emails as acknowledgment and acceptance of the notice. As a practical point, tenants may choose to agree with the landlord to vacate the premises without having to go through an official process.
 
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  In Abu Dhabi, it is more difficult to negotiate with a landlord on eviction matters as the landlord does not need to disclose the reasons for eviction. The best way forward is to negotiate the landlord’s requirements to see if you can reach an amicable arrangement before deciding on vacating the property for good.
 
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  Firstly, find out why you are being evicted, if you have not defaulted on your obligations as per your tenancy contract then most likely the landlord has sent you a Notice for Eviction under one of the reasons stated in Article 25(2) of the Tenancy Law. Secondly, make sure the notice was sent in a legal fashion via Notary Public or registered mail. Moreover, make sure the landlord has given you twelve (12) months’ notice, anything less than twelve months is illegal and cannot be enforced. If the landlord has performed everything in accordance with the Tenancy Law, then there is not much else you could do. At the least, you will be given sufficient notice to look for another property during the notice period.
 
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  Article 25(1)(b) of the Tenancy Law allows the landlord to demand from the tenant to vacate the property prior to the expiry of a tenancy contract if the landlord finds out that the tenant subleases the property, or part thereof, without landlord’s written approval. In such case, eviction shall be applicable to the tenant and the subtenant. The subtenant may request compensation from the tenant in this case but he cannot claim any compensation against the landlord. The law is silent on how long a notice should be given to the tenant to vacate the premises. However, notice must be sent either through the Notary Public or by registered mail.
 
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  For Abu Dhabi, the landlord does not need to state reasons for eviction in the Notice for Eviction. However, as the case is in Dubai, the new landlord will have to abide by all the terms and conditions of the tenancy contract that was signed by the previous landlord.
 
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  Article 25(2)(d) of the Tenancy Law allows you to request the Tenant to vacate the property upon expiry of the lease under one of the following condition:  
  • If the owner wishes to demolish the property for reconstruction or to add new constructions that prevent tenant from benefiting from the leased property, provided that necessary licenses are obtained.
  • If the property requires renovation or comprehensive maintenance which cannot be executed while tenant is occupying the property, provided that a technical report issued by Dubai Municipality or accredited by it is to be submitted to this effect.
  • If the owner of the property wishes to recover the property for use by him personally or by his next of kin of first degree provided that he proves that he does not own a suitable alternative property for that purpose.
  • If the owner of the property wishes to sell the leased property.
  However, the law also specifies that you must notify tenant with reasons for eviction at least twelve (12) months prior to the determined date of eviction subject that such notice being sent through the Notary Public or by registered mail. You will not be able to request the tenant to vacate the property as soon as title deed passes to the new landlord unless you go through the procedures that were just mentioned. Moreover, the new landlord takes possession of the property and with it the tenancy as well. Hence, the new landlord will have to abide by all the terms and conditions of the tenancy contract that was signed by the previous landlord.
 
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How do I increase rent on renewal of a tenancy in Abu Dhabi?

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  For Abu Dhabi rentals, the Landlord has to notify the tenant of any rent increase 60 days before the date of expiry of the tenancy for residential properties and 90 days prior to the date of expiry for commercial properties.
 
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How do I increase rent on renewal of a tenancy in Dubai?

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Answer:


  As per the law, if you want to increase the rent on your property, you have to serve the tenant with a notice of increase in the rent not less than 90 days from the date of expiry of the tenancy. The Rent Increase Calculator will determine the maximum allowable increase that you will be able to put down in the renewed tenancy contract.
 
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  For landlords in Abu Dhabi, the landlord may only increase the rent upon the renewal date of the tenancy. There is no prescribed Rent Calculator so it is up to the landlord and the tenant to negotiate what would be a reasonable increase in rent subject to the market rate.
 
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  Service charges and rent are two different matters. Service charges are handled by the developer or facilities Management Company. Moreover, service charges must be paid by the landlord to the developer to cover annual maintenance costs. On the other hand, rents are handled by RERA and the Rent Increase Calculator. A landlord can only increase the rent of a property upon the renewal of the lease. Hence, if you want to increase the rent for your tenant, you must provide the tenant with a notice to increase the rent not less than 90 (ninety) days from the date of expiry of the tenancy.  (For further information on how to increase rents, See Landlord Guidelines Dubai: Rent Increases)
 
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Who is responsible for the maintenance of the property, the landlord or the tenant in Abu Dhabi?

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  As per the Tenancy Law, the Landlord is responsible for the maintenance of the property and to rectify any defects or faults that affect tenant’s intended benefit from the property, unless the two parties agree otherwise. This means that you can specify in a Tenancy Contract who will be performing the maintenance of the property. Practically speaking, a landlord should make good any major defects such as broken A.C and circuitry. It is worth noting to check whether the property is still covered under the developer’s Defects Liability Period. The landlord should ensure the property is in suitable condition for handover. Moreover, the landlord should provide regular maintenance to the property and not allow it to fall in disrepair.
 
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  As per the Tenancy Law, the Landlord is responsible for the maintenance of the property and to rectify any defects or faults that affect tenant’s intended benefit from the property, unless the two parties agree otherwise. This means that you can specify in a Tenancy Contract who will be performing the maintenance of the property. Practically speaking, a landlord should make good any major defects such as broken A.C and circuitry. It is worth noting to check whether the property is still covered under the developer’s Defects Liability Period.
 
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How do you ensure that you get the right tenant for your property in Abu Dhabi?

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Answer:


  Know what you want beforehand. For example, if you are renting a one bedroom flat, you would not to let the flat to a family of four children. Alternatively, if you want to let a furnished villa, you may not allow a tenant to have pets in the house. Also, consider whether you like to appoint an agent or not. There are many benefits to appointing an agent, however, many landlords prefer to find the tenants themselves.
 
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How do you ensure that you get the right tenant for your property in Dubai?

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Answer:


  Know what you want beforehand. For example, if you are renting out a one bedroom flat, you would not to let the flat to a family of four children. Alternatively, if you want to let a furnished villa, you may not allow a tenant to have pets in the house. Also, consider whether you like to appoint an agent or not. There are many benefits to appointing an agent, however, many landlords prefer to find the tenants themselves.
 
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  If a Notice for Eviction is legally served, the tenant has no choice but to leave the premises. If the tenant persists on staying in the premises, the landlord may a lodge a claim with the Rent Dispute Settlement Committee (See Landlord Guidelines Dubai on Rent Disputes). Only after the landlord obtains a successful judgment against the tenant will he be able to evict the tenant from the property.
 
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How do I notarize a Notice for Eviction in Abu Dhabi?

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  For Landlords in Abu Dhabi, there is no mandate to notarize a Notice for Eviction. The landlord can send a Notice for Eviction either through registered mail or by email, the notice will be deemed valid providing the tenant confirms receipt of the notice.
 
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How do I notarize a Notice for Eviction in Dubai ?

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If you wish to send a Notice for Eviction through the Notary Public, you may go to any one of the Notary Public branches (Main branch – Dubai Courts, Economic Department branch, Al Barsha branch or Al Towar branch). Once you are at the Notary Public, you must collect a ticket and wait until you are called. Once you are called, the notary will attest the notice and you will be asked to pay a small fee to complete the notarization process.
 
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How to legally evict a tenant in Abu Dhabi?

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  For Landlords in Abu Dhabi please see Landlord Guidelines Abu Dhabi. The implementation of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council Decision No. 32 for 2012 states that In the event the Landlord does not wish to renew the lease, or wishes to amend the conditions of the lease, the Landlord only has to notify the Tenant in writing, two months prior to the date of the lease's expiry in the case of residential properties; and three months prior to the to the date of the lease's expiry in the case of properties for commercial, industrial or professional purposes.
 
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How to legally evict a tenant in Dubai?

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  Article 25(1) deals with cases where the Landlord may evict a Tenant from the premises before expiry of the Tenancy Contract. Article 25(2) deals with cases where the Landlord may evict a Tenant from the premises upon expiry of the Tenancy Contract, in which case a Landlord must provide written notice to the tenant 12 months prior to the contract’s expiry providing that such notice is sent through the Notary Public or by registered mail. Please refer to the Landlord Guidelines Dubai.
 
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How to legally evict a tenant?

On matters of eviction…

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Answer:

Article 25(1) deals with cases where the Landlord may evict a Tenant from the premises before expiry of the Tenancy Contract. Article 25(2) deals with cases where the Landlord may evict a Tenant from the premises upon expiry of the Tenancy Contract, in which case a Landlord must provide written notice to the tenant 12 months prior to the contract’s expiry providing that such notice is sent through the Notary Public or by registered mail. Please refer to the Landlord Guidelines Dubai.
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