Price more important than location as cost of renting soars, survey reveals

February 24, 2014 3:26 pm

The old adage about the three most important factors when choosing a property being ‘location, location and location’ might just not be true anymore. According to a recent nationwide survey by, the country’s leading real estate portal, rental price emerged as the most important criterion amongst prospective tenants. Asking respondents to select the three most important criteria for choosing a new home, the survey pinpointed price, location and facilities as key factors in home choice.

The survey underlines growing concerns regarding spiralling rents. Given that leasing prices have shot up across the UAE even in cities such as Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah, Ajman and Fujairah, earlier known for their relatively lower rentals, it is not surprising that renters are becoming budget-conscious.

“However, this is not to say that other factors are irrelevant,” said Michael Lahyani, CEO and Founder of “There were other features which also rated highly in our survey, such as, location and amenities. Access to on-site community facilities is likely to become increasingly important to renters as they look for ways to enjoy downtime without breaking the bank,” added Lahyani.

Given that preferences change over time, surveys such as these help landlords stay on top of what renters are looking for in order to be able to market and manage their properties most effectively.

“Price seems to have the biggest impact on a renter’s decision to choose one apartment/villa over another. Investors and buy-to-let landlords can draw upon this information if they’re looking to increase their portfolio or rent from existing properties. Given that close to 28,000 units are expected to enter the market this year, with Dubailand accounting for most of the future supply, this also means that as an owner, pricing your property appropriately will give you a competitive edge rather than upgrading your apartment with the latest bath or flooring,” said Lahyani.