11/22/2018

A First-Time Buyer's Guide to Home Maintenance in Dubai

With the UAE ranking sixth-highest in the world for inbound property investment and its real estate market expanding, first-time home buyers and property investors have a handful of home maintenance and repair essentials that they must tend to. Dubai Properties combines five important elements in a detailed guide aimed at property buyers in Dubai, to ensure that you have everything covered when it comes to property management and home maintenance standards in Dubai:

  1. In-house repair and renovations 

For the greatest return on investment, pay close attention to updating your kitchen and bathrooms. Kitchens and bathrooms are high-use, high-traffic rooms at any house. They have a high appeal to potential buyers and so impact home resale values the most. 

Updating your kitchen will give you the highest return on investment. Replacing old appliances, purchasing matching appliances if possible, refacing or replacing outdated cabinets and reviving old flooring are all effective ways to increase your return on investment.  

With regards to bathrooms, a complete renovation is often unnecessary. Tackling elements such as vanities, toilets and fixtures are all inexpensive yet effective ways to add appeal to your bathrooms. 

Another great idea to add value to your property is modifying the floor plan or adding square footage. Modifying the floor plan according to modern home trends, such as removing a wall to create an open kitchen, or adding square footage by adding a bathroom or a family room, makes your house stand out to buyers and gives it more weight in the real estate market in Dubai. 

  1. Home warranty and insurance contract 

While it is not popular to obtain home insurance in Dubai, possibly due to the country’s relative safety from burglary and theft, it is always advisable to seek home insurance. Depending on your policy’s terms, insurance can protect you from losses resulting from:

  • Burglary
  • Fire
  • Flooding
  • Vandalism
  • Accidental damages.  

Home insurance policies can either be basic or comprehensive. A basic insurance policy insures at least the home contents, and can be extended to include compensation to use alternative accommodation in case the home becomes inhabitable, in addition to accident insurance cover for domestic helpers. The policy can also be tailored to cover cases of tenant’s liability, where the tenant is legally liable for the damage incurred.  

Comprehensive insurance policies provide coverage for all three coverage categories:

  • Physical property
  • Home contents
  • Personal belongings.

You could also choose to obtain individual coverage for any of the three categories. It is worth noting that home insurance policies usually exclude damage due to wear and tear, as well as damage caused by pets, terrorism or war. 

There are critical tips to keep in mind when it comes to home insurance:

  • Carefully check your landlord’s tenancy contract for any insurance clauses, such as being held liable to property damage if you accidently start a fire
  • When purchasing an insurance policy, make sure you have adequate coverage against fire, theft, accidental damage and natural catastrophes.
  • Create a home inventory of all your apartment belongings and save pictures of them. 
  • Avoid discarding receipts of items worth AED 3,000 or more – keep them on hand.
  • Finally, it goes without saying to store insurance documents in a fire-proof box, and keep your insurance company contact details handy. 
  1. Gardening and landscaping 

A great way to add curb appeal to your home is working on its landscape. Planting trees, flowers or plants, trimming your lawns, applying fertilizers and administering weed control are all ways to add beauty and value to your home. However, while having a well-maintained lawn adds significant value, going overboard with implementing elaborate designs is not expected to hold its value. 

There are many other ways you can evaluate the curb appeal of your house and determine whether changes ought to be made. Assess the color of your door and the house exteriors. Perhaps an update is needed if there are cracks, peeling on the trim or façade, or the colors are just too dull! If there are certain guidelines imposed by a homeowners' association (HOA), consult their color list before making any changes. 

  1. Smart building management and security systems 

Only a few years ago, buildings were supported by a single central Building Management System (BMS) along with one or two isolated sub-systems typically used to control air conditioning, the lift or lighting systems. Today, buildings are supported by iBMS – Integrated Building Management System, aspiring to make buildings self-sustainable and more comfortable – and simply smarter! 

With smart systems come great benefits. For example, in the case of fire, buildings supported by iBMS would have the lift systems disabled and emergency exits opened, which definitely enhances the safety of the building. The future vision is that smart buildings will become even smarter, and become interconnected with the city’s infrastructure to eventually form a smart city. 

With a commitment to contribute to more sustainable living in Dubai, Dubai Properties created the largest living green wall at Dubai Wharf, located at the heart of the Jaddaf Waterfront and overlooking the historical Dubai Creek. Extending 210 meters in length and six meters in height, the green wall is capable of offsetting 4.4 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually - contributing to a cleaner and more sustainable environment. 

Learn more: 5 Reasons to Love the Jaddaf Waterfront Community.

Additionally, Dubai Properties has also completed installments of energy-saving systems in its communities which are estimated to offset 1,450 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually, with the aim to make Dubai a more environmentally friendly city and enhance buildings’ energy efficiency. 

Although the above comes with great advantages, it is important to be aware of the risks and drawbacks before purchasing a smart home.  

  1. A well-decorated home is a happy home 

One of the most exciting aspects about moving into a new home or decorating an investment property, is deciding how to add taste and uniqueness through its decorations. While the world of home decoration is so vast, some tips cannot go wrong.  

Keep wall colors – especially on the first floor – light and neutral. This allows maximum flexibility to change up the house’s accessories with ease whenever a change is needed. In addition, having two small, adjacent rooms that are painted with the same neutral color gives them a larger feel. Finally, establishing a color scheme for the house, which can be implemented with different patterns in different rooms, gives the house a whole different feel and taste. 

Being a first-time buyer can be daunting. However, with the right information and keeping the essentials in mind, the process can definitely be an enjoyable one. Get in touch with our property managers at Dubai Properties today to learn more about available properties and tips for property management and home maintenance in Dubai. 

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