Dubai is a fantastic place to own real estate. Property out here is built to a high standard, while returns are often higher than in many other property hot spots.
And, with the tourism industry continuing to thrive and the delayed Expo 2020 soon to be arriving on our shores, there’s never been a better time to get involved.
There are plenty of other great reasons to invest in real estate out here too. There are no annual property taxes in Dubai, and the tax rate on rental income also remains at 0%. Set up in one of the emirate’s free zones, and you can also take advantage of the freedom to repatriate your profits.
Purchasing and managing property is best conducted through a company. So, if you’re in a position to invest, your first port of call should be a local company setup expert. Worldwide Formations can guide you through the entire process, incorporating a company to hold your property portfolio.
Steps to start a real estate company in Dubai
Before beginning any license application, we’ll work with you to decide the best type of setup for your business. There are two common types of business in the UAE, mainland and free zone. As mentioned above, free zone businesses benefit from exclusive tax exemptions and other advantages.
Mainland companies do not receive the same benefits, but they can trade freely in the local UAE market. However, free zone businesses can only do this with the help of a local agent.
Once you have made this decision, we will guide you through the rest of the license application process.
Step 1: Choose your business activity
The first step in the process is determining your business activity. This will depend on the type of real estate company that you wish to run. For example, you could form a company to hold property or set up as a property manager or real estate broker.
The DED publishes the complete list of permitted activities. We can help you choose the one that most closely aligns with your business.
Step 2: Choosing your company name
Next is a step of the business incorporation process that takes on more importance here in Dubai – choosing your company name. That’s because as well as the need for a name that’s catchy and captures the essence of your business, you’ll also need to stick to the UAE’s clearly defined naming conventions.
In short, UAE company names must not contain any blasphemous or offensive language, any references to well-known institutions or any abbreviations of your name – though your full name is acceptable.
Your name should also have a legal entity attached to it such as FZE or LLC. It must also relate to your business activity, not resemble the name of any other company and be available to register.
Step 3: Applying for your license
The license application process differs slightly depending on whether you set up in the mainland or a free zone.
If setting up in the mainland, you should apply to the local municipality or Department of Economic Development (DED). Alternatively, if you start your business in a free zone, you can make your application directly to the relevant authority.
In both cases, we can manage this process for you, liaising with authorities on your behalf.
Depending on the type of business you intend to run, you may need additional accreditations. For example, to operate a real estate brokerage, you’ll need to pass the Certified Training for Real Estate Brokers course issued by the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA).
Step 4: Applying for your visa
Once you have your trade license, you can apply for your UAE residency visa.
This process involves four stages, including a medical fitness test and biometric capturing. In all, it usually takes less than a week.
You can also sponsor others such as your children, a spouse or domestic staff for their visas too, providing you meet the eligibility criteria.
Documents required to start a real estate company in Dubai
When applying for your real estate license, you will be required to submit several documents along with your application form, including:
- A copy of your passport
- Several passport photos
- Proof of relevant experience or qualifications
- A No Objection Certificate from your current employer (if applicable)
What is the cost of opening a real estate brokerage in Dubai?
Putting aside the funds needed to build your property portfolio, there are several costs to starting a real estate business in Dubai, UAE.
The real estate license cost in Dubai is in the region of AED 15,000 to AED 25,000, often inclusive of your residency visa. If you intend to run a brokerage, you will also need to account for the AED 2,500 RERA real estate brokers’ course fee.
Start your real estate business in the UAE with Worldwide Formations
When starting a UAE real estate business, getting the right guidance beforehand is key. That’s why it’s always advisable to undertake the steps with the assistance of a registered company formations agent to eliminate any potential hassles that might arise.
With more than 15 years of experience in company incorporation, and trusted by over 10,000 clients around the world, Worldwide Formations can help you get your business up and running within a matter of weeks.
We are authorised to incorporate companies in all major free zone jurisdictions, and across the UAE mainland. And we can manage the entire company formation process on your behalf and correspond with all relevant authorities for you. All you need to do is wait for the green light to start doing business.
But our service doesn’t end there. We also offer a range of value-added services to facilitate all primary transitions and establishment processes. And provide trustworthy bank account opening assistance, VAT registration, re-instatement, and renewal services.
So, if you’re running a business in the UAE, or planning to start one, it always pays to talk to Worldwide Formations.