List of Top 33 Freehold areas in Dubai With Buyer's Advice
Ever since the formation of the UAE in 1971, Dubai was set to be one of the most desirable global cities in the future when it comes to housing, business and lifestyle. Thriving on several advantages to its merit, including its location, Dubai serves as a unique gateway between the East and West in the modern world. Led to the development by visionary rulers of the emirate, this vibrant metropolis is home to people of more than 200 nationalities today. With the introduction of freehold areas in Dubai, the city has attracted international talent across all sectors and industries and has witnessed robust development in the last two decades.
Foreigners were not permitted to buy any kind of real estate property in Dubai until the local government passed property law in 2002 with a revolutionary decision of allowing freehold property ownership for foreigners. Since then, Dubai has been a centre of attraction for investors globally. Dubai's real estate market saw a new rise in the subsequent years with substantial development and occupancy of freehold properties.
With sincere efforts and massive economic investments, Dubai Government has encouraged the development of world-class infrastructure that intrigues the interests of property buyers around the world even today.
What is a Freehold Property
The areas designated by the Ruler and Government of Dubai where non-GCC nationals can own properties are known as Dubai freehold properties. Freehold areas in Dubai are established under Law 7 of 2006 concerning land registration in Dubai. Article 4 of this law enables non-UAE nationals to acquire real estate properties in these freehold areas of Dubai and to have their rights registered with the Dubai Land Department (DLD).
Advantage of Owning Freehold Property in Dubai
If you own a freehold property in Dubai, you have complete control of the property. This means that freehold property owners can completely makeover their apartment unit or modify their villa as they wish. Furthermore, there are no additional payments in a freehold property like service charge, which may be persistent in rented or leasehold properties. Thus, the owner knows the exact amount he spends for purchasing the property.
Freehold property in Dubai gives you the ultimate freedom, just like a freehold property in your home country. You are free to do whatever you legally wish to do within your property without being answerable to anybody else. Below are some more benefits of freehold properties in Dubai.
- Freehold properties continue to stay with the family as long as they wish to retain. It gets passed on to the owner's heir and generations to follow.
- The owners of a freehold property can use, sell or lease the property as they desire.
- The owners of freehold property in Dubai and their families stand eligible for renewable residence visas in the UAE if they meet the set criteria. Freehold property owners also have a chance of getting a long term visa for 5 and 10-years.
- People looking for freehold properties have a wide range of options to choose from many designated freehold areas in Dubai. There are numerous areas with extravagant options of freehold properties catering to different choices and budgets of different buyers.
Offering a premium combination of best in class infrastructure, safe surroundings and a wide range of luxurious amenities, the Dubai property market is a hub of global investors. With the expansion of freehold land in Dubai, residing expats and foreign investors have been actively looking for suitable freehold properties in Dubai for sale. We have put together a definitive list of freehold areas in Dubai to help you find the best property in your preferred location.
It is important to note that many freehold locations also have certain non-freehold areas in Dubai. There might be certain leasehold and some not for sale properties reserved by Dubai Land Department. Hence, not all areas are 100% freehold but you will find a variety of ready to move and off-plan freehold properties in all of these areas.
Top Communities and Freehold Areas in Dubai
1. Business Bay
One of the first names coming to our consideration while thinking of freehold property areas in Dubai is Business Bay. This vibrant locality is considered an oasis of business and trade. The community offers some of the best apartments for sale in Dubai developed by leading real estate players like DAMAC Properties. A fine combination of residential towers and commercial complexes, Business Bay, is home to several lifestyle apartments and multinational offices like DAMAC Prive, DAMAC Avanti, Merano Tower, etc. New freehold properties are being developed in Business Bay at a considerable pace.
Spread over a massive area of over 100 square miles, Dubailand is one of the fastest-growing off-plan freehold areas in Dubai. With many prominent developers in the region coming up with villa communities and freehold apartments, Dubailand is also set to have theme parks, recreation hubs, retail shoppicentresers and more. This makes it an ideal choice for real estate investors regardless of their budget, given the range of freehold properties Dubailand has to offer. The area is the home to one of its kind luxury spaces like Trump International Golf Center in DAMAC Hills and other prolific lifestyle communities like DAMAC Lagoons which reminisces the vibe of coastal cities of the Mediterranean.
3. Downtown Dubai
Well renowned for its iconic landmarks like Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Mall. Dubai Downtown is a posh community with luxurious freehold apartments for sale located around the remarkable retail spaces, entertainment spots and dining joints of Dubai. The high profile metropolitan lifestyle of Dubai can be best experienced in Downtown.
4. Barsha Heights
Centrally located along the Sheikh Zayed Road, Barsha Heights is a popular freehold area in Dubai. Previously known as TECOM, Barsha Heights is decked up with spacious offices, mid-range hotels, and residential apartments. The locality is well equipped with shopping marts, recreation hubs and healthcare centres
5. Dubai International Financial Centre
Dubai International Financial Centre or DIFC is a high-end mixed-use community located adjacent to Downtown. A leading business and financial hub of the Middle East, DIFC has many high rise freehold apartments for sale in Dubai. The area is located right next to Sheikh Zayed Road and has a handful of art galleries, supermarkets, restaurants, etc.
6. Dubai Marina
Known to the masses for its breathtaking views and artistic skyline, Dubai Marina is one of the most popular locations in the city. This upmarket freehold area in Dubai constitutes beaches, a canal, culinary retreats, shopping malls and more. The true essence of urban Dubai can be found in this locality. Investors here have many freehold properties for sale to choose from.
7. Jumeirah Beach Residence
Jumeirah Beach Residence or JBR is a single-phase residential and commercial project developed out of 6 clusters constituting 40 tall towers. Residents of JBR enjoy picturesque views of the Arabian Gulf, Green Courtyards and the Marina. Investors often look for freehold properties for sale in this area because it has a wide range of housing options with some houses having direct access to the beach.
9. Jumeirah Lake Towers
Developed artistically around the edges of four artificial lakes, Jumeirah Lake Towers or JLT is a community divided into 26 clusters named A to Z. With a wide range of lifestyle apartments spread across 79 towers, JLT is one of the ideal locations for investors looking for freehold property in Dubai.
10. Jumeirah Village Circle
Sitting pretty amidst landscaped gardens, Jumeirah Village Circle or JVC is one of the most discussed communities offering freehold properties in Dubai for sale. Jumeirah Village attracts property buyers looking to invest in an area with proximity to schools, healthcare facilities, parks and markets. It offers a classic mix of townhouses, apartments and villas.
11. Jumeirah Village Triangle
Located northwards of Dubai Marina, Jumeirah Village Triangle or JVT is one of the popular freehold areas in Dubai. People looking to buy properties have a wide range of options to choose from at JVT. With more than 5000 properties in the vicinity, the area is well equipped with reputed schools, marts, shopping malls, gyms and other facilities.
12. DAMAC Hills
DAMAC Hills properties is an amazing option for people planning to buy the best freehold property in Dubai. Located in the heart of Dubailand, this ultra-modern community includes a range of luxurious apartments, prolific villas and townhouses. Built around the famous Trump International Golf Course, the freehold properties at DAMAC Hills come with best in class amenities and scenic outdoor views.
13. DAMAC Hills 2
Previously known as Akoya, DAMAC Hills 2, is of the first eco-friendly communities in Dubai. This off-plan master community already has many finished freehold apartments and villas for sale in DAMAC Hills 2. Located off Al Qudra Road, DAMAC Hills 2 has been attracting many investors in and outside Dubai. Set around a Golf Course, the community promotes a tranquil lifestyle in an ultra-modern luxury setup.
14. DAMAC Lagoons
DAMAC Lagoons is one of a kind collection of bespoke villas and townhouses set within 8 exotic Meditteranean city themes. This newly launched collection of freehold properties in Dubai is located at Golf City Hessa Street and offers an exclusive range of 3, 4 & 5 bedroom homes further embellished by serene surroundings of premium green spaces and water bodies.
15. Palm Jumeirah
The largest manmade island in the world, Palm Jumeirah, is an experience within itself. Sitting on the exuberant coast of the Arabian Sea, this upscale high profile community is designed in the shape of a Palm Tree. Palm Jumeirah is a posh locality being one of the most luxurious freehold areas in Dubai. Here, you will find a bespoke collection of luxury hotels, townhouses, apartments and villas.
16. Al Barari
The beautiful suburb, Al Barari, is a secluded community offering some of the most luxurious freehold villas in Dubai. The community features a lake and landscaped gardens with various plans sourced from over 20 countries. Al Barari offers the best freehold property in Dubai suitable for people looking for high profile housing in a luxury setup.
17. Dubai Sports City
Dubai Sports City is a sports lifestyle community located off Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road. It offers budget-friendly freehold apartments along with exciting recreational facilities. Property buyers in Sports City will find a mix of low and mid-rise apartment buildings as well as villas in this locality.
18. Dubai Production City
Dubai Production City is a mix-use freehold area in Dubai with affordable residential options. Located adjacent to the Dubai Sports City, this area is developing rapidly with the increasing housing demands. You will find spacious freehold apartments for reasonable rates in this location.
19. Dubai Motor City
Dubai Motor City is also one of the theme-based freehold areas in Dubai. Home to the Dubai Autodrome, the motorsport circuit, this mixed-use community offers commercial properties, apartments and villas suitable for both families as well as individuals. Surrounded by cobblestone streets and greenery, it attracts many real estate investors.
20. Dubai Studio City
Studio City is one of the developing areas spanning over 500 acres of freehold land in Dubai. Well known for its swanky commercial complexes and offices, Dubai Studio City also has many residential properties to choose from.
21. Dubai Festival City
Built alongside the Dubai Creek, Festival City is a mixed-use development spread over more than 1200 acrnd. The locality offers both freehold apartments and villas built in contemporary style. People living in Festival City enjoy the breathtaking views of Dubai Creek and landscaped gardens.
22. International City
International City is arguably one of the most affordable freehold areas in Dubai. It is a self-contained locality with low to mid-rise buildings distributed among 10 clusters named after different countries of the world. This area has been attracting investors for a while now on account of considerably higher rental yields earned against the investment.
23. Discovery Gardens
Another community with relatively affordable freehold properties is Discovery Gardens. Located in close proximity to Ibn Battuta Mall, Discovery Gardens is a good choice for individuals and families looking for spacious homes surrounded by green covers. The area consists of six sections of garden living theme.
24. Culture Village
Culture Village is a developing freehold area in Dubai. Also known as Jaddaf Waterfront, this quaint area is located along the shores of Dubai Creek. You will find several luxury homes, hotels and many off plan residential and commercial properties being developed here.
25. Meydan City
Located in Nad Al Sheba, Meydan is a promising area for many investors seeking freehold properties in Dubai. Known for its one of a kind racecourse, Meydan is set to blend luxurious residences with extravagant commercial avenues, leisure, recreation and more. Its strategic location is also a unique attraction for investors in this area.
26. Dubai Investment Park
Dubai Investments Park (DIP) is an emerging mixed-use development being constructed in an area of over 5000 acres. It is one of many freehold areas in Dubai with a good combination of residential and commercial properties. Divided into three primary phases, Investment Park is located near the international airport in Jebel Ali Free Zone.
27. Dubai Silicon Oasis
Another mixed-use locality offering villas, apartments and an amazing commercial zone is the self-contained community of Silicon Oasis. The community offers a balanced lifestyle to people from different phases of life. The well-connected location of Silicon Oasis makes it an attractive avenue for investors planning to buy a freehold property for sale in Dubai.
28. Dubai South
The home of Al Maktoum International Airport, Dubai South, was previously known as Dubai World Central. This freehold area in Dubai is an off-plan development set to be divided into eight sub-areas. It is going to be a mixed-use community with commercial spaces and residential properties with lifestyle amenities.
A district within Dubailand, Arjan, is a community of 48 finished and 37 off plan buildings. Supported with a well-connected road network, this is a mixed-use locality with residential and commercial freehold properties for sale in Dubai.
The home to Dubai's latest landmark Ain Dubai, Bluewater Island, is one of the newer freehold property areas in Dubai, which is gaining massive popularity. Located close to the famous JBR area, Bluewater offers lifestyle luxury apartments. The community is still developing at the moment, and it is expected to offer ten residential buildings. 2 hotels and retail shopping and dining experiences.
31. Mohammed Bin Rashid City
Mohammed Bin Rashid City, or MBR, is one of the largest freehold areas in Dubai. This highly anticipated community includes exciting tourist attractions, leisure activities, the next most significant shopping mall in the world, a recreation park and the largest man-made lagoon. Spread over 1000 acres of freehold land, MBR will feature luxurious apartments and villas.
Mudon is a closely-knit locality offering affordable townhouses, villas and apartments. Surrounded in greenery amidst parks and gardens, Mudon is an excellent place for families looking for freehold property in Dubai.
33. Umm Suqeim
Located along the Jumeirah Beach Road, Umm Suqeim is one of the city’s older areas. While the majority of Umm Suqeim falls under non-freehold areas in Dubai, Madinat Jumeirah locality in this area offers some of the most luxurious residential properties in an environment-friendly setup.
Things to Consider While Buying Freehold Property in Dubai
With new freehold properties being developed all around Dubai, it is an ideal decision to invest in Dubai real estate at the moment. However, just like any other significant investment, buyers need to be careful of certain fundamental things before buying a freehold property.
Your Purpose of Purchase
One of the most essential things to consider while buying a property in Dubai is to ensure the purpose of purchasing the property. You would either buy a property for residing or for investment. If you are going to live in your property, examine the neighbourhood, amenities, etc. If your intention is an investment, then consider rental yields and areas with higher resale value.
Evaluate the Developer
Another highly critical thing to emphasise on where you are putting your money. Spend a good time researching your developer, their experience in the industry and region, track record, customer testimonials, etc. Always choose a reliable name like DAMAC Properties who has a history of delivering lifestyle properties with quality infrastructure and amenities for almost two decades.
Check Fees and Charges
Once you finalise everything associated with your property, you will be paying specific fees for your freehold property in Dubai like Commission of your agent, Dubai land department fees, registration fees, off-plan property contract fees, mortgage fees, etc.
Do your research beforehand to avoid paying extra or getting penalised for missing any applicable mandatory government charges.
Can I purchase an apartment in Dubai?
Yes, people from any nationality can buy any sort of property in any of the freehold areas in Dubai. You don't require any residency or permits to own a property in Dubai (UAE). By following the relevant legal procedures, you can purchase a freehold apartment in Dubai.
What is the difference between Freehold and Leasehold property?
When you buy a freehold property, you have complete ownership of the property and the land it stands on. Freehold property can be sold, leased or occupied by you and your family as per your wish and it can be passed on to your heirs in future. However, with leasehold property, you will have the property rights for a maximum fixed term of 99 years or lesser. However, you don't have the ownership of land and major rights of the property remain reserved with the property owner.
What is the difference between a Free zone and a Freehold?
Free zones are dedicated business zones exclusively used for business. Free zones don't have residential properties within them. It is a good option for foreign companies to establish their business in Dubai free zones as it exempts them from taxation. Free zones in Dubai serve the purpose of encouraging foreign investment. Business owners who set up their business in a free zone have 100% ownership of companies.
Freehold areas, on the other hand, are locations where non-GCC nationals can own properties. When you buy a property in a freehold area, you get complete ownership of the housing unit and land of your freehold property. If you own a property in any of the freehold areas in Dubai, then you are free to sell, lease or reside in the property as per your wish.