Sales of ready villas and townhouses in Dubai jumped more than three-fold during the first quarter as residents sought more spacious homes amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to listings portal Property Finder.
Close to 2,231 ready villas and townhouses were sold during the first quarter, compared to 673 units during the same period a year ago.
Areas such as Dubai Hills Estate, Palm Jumeirah, Arabian Ranches, Damac Hills and Jumeirah Village Circle, among others registered higher sales of ready villas/townhouses, according to Property Finder.
“In the first quarter of 2021, the transaction numbers were higher than ever and we have seen record-breaking month-on-month sales for ready properties, with the villa/townhouse segment leading the way,” the report said.
“In fact, as of first quarter of 2021, one in every three residential secondary properties sold in Dubai was a villa/townhouse.”
Dubai Hills Estate recorded 203 sales of villas, a 145 per cent year-on-year increase, while Palm Jumeirah saw a more than four-fold rise in sales transactions to 65. In Arabian Ranches, more than 100 villas were sold during the period, according to the report.
Other areas including Damac Hills, Jumeirah Village Circle, The Springs, Jumeirah Golf Estates, The Meadows and Dubailand also recorded higher sales. Town Square recorded 99 secondary villas/townhouse sales in the first quarter, compared to 11 during the same period last year.
Nad Al Sheba registered 248 sales transactions during the first quarter from zero last year as new properties were handed over to buyers, according to the report.
Ready apartment sales also increased by 40 per cent during the period.
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“Over the last year, we ... have seen significant demand in the data and trends of the villa/townhouse sector," Lynnette Abad Sacchetto, director of research and data at Property Finder, said.
"We have seen the search trends increase on the website which transpired into sales transactions over the months in 2020. This trend has continued into 2021 and we don’t anticipate it to stop anytime soon."
Developers are also "jumping onto the bandwagon and adding new villa/townhouses phases into existing projects, which are selling out within hours after hitting the market", she said.
Property prices in the UAE are expected to stabilise in 2021 as the economy recovers from the coronavirus pandemic-induced slowdown and government initiatives spur growth, according to analysts.
New programmes such as visas for expatriate retirees and the expansion of the 10-year golden visa scheme to attract foreign professionals to settle in the UAE are also expected to support the local real estate market.
The UAE's move to reform its commercial companies' law to annul the requirement for onshore companies to have an Emirati shareholder is also expected to boost foreign direct investment in the country.