Government Schemes for Home Buyers in the UAE

Government Schemes for Home Buyers in the UAE

Dubai is undeniably a prime destination for property buyers more than ever before. Buying a villa in Dubai means both national and expat buyers are now granted interesting advantages in terms of bank loans and visas. Indeed, to contribute to the market development and re-boost investors’ confidence in the county after 2 years of tough economic downturn, the UAE government has recently launched a series of schemes and laws to regulate the property ownership market.

In November 2021, properties sales in Dubai soared by 80%, while by mi-December real estate transactions reached a staggering AED 1.31B as per the Dubai Land Department report. Villas and apartments for sale in Dubai are currently galore with more construction projects being developed to supply the increasing demand. This is also due to smart schemes developed by the government in the UAE aiming to increase property investments while creating a healthy thriving real estate environment.


Home Mortgage

Known as home finance in the UAE, the home mortgage amount is calculated according mainly to your salary. Since your salary is what guarantees covering the loan amount during the whole period, each bank specifies the minimum salary accepted, as well as the interest rate. Based on this, if you want to buy an apartment in Dubai, the total mortgage amount is then granted with defined monthly instalments payable to the bank.

If you are an expat, you will be required to pay a down payment a minimum of 25% of the total price of any residence or villa for sale.

The government has set the maximum Loan to Value Ratio as follows:

For UAE Nationals: 

For a property that is worth up to AED 5M, and as a first home buyer, the LTVR will be a maximum of 80% of the property value. If the property price exceeds AED 5M, the LTVR will be a maximum of 70% of the total price.

Second home buyers will be granted an LTVR of a maximum of 65% of the value of the property.

For Foreigners:

For a first house buyer, the LTVR must represent a maximum of 75% of the property value if the latter is less than or equal to AED 5M. For property prices above AED 5M, the LTVR will be a maximum of 65% of the total price of the house.

For a second home purchase, expats are granted an LTVR of a maximum of 60%.

Off-plan Purchase:

For residences bought off-plan, the LTVR is only 50% for both nationals and foreigners whatever the property purchase price.

The maximum loan term is 25 years, while the maximum age for reimbursement is set at 70 years old for nationals, 65 years old for foreigners and 70 years old for self-employed people.


New Visa Policies

Amendments have been made by the government in Dubai regarding regulations for granting a visa. The objective of such a policy revision is to increase investments, namely in the real estate sector, and provide a feel of belonging to foreign investors and residents as around 89% of Dubai’s population consists of expats.


  • Ten-year Residency Visa: Also called Investor Visa or Golden Visa, it is granted to investors in public investments or in properties. For the first, the investment amount must be at least of AED 10M. As for investment in properties, the Golden Visa is only applicable for a freehold and residential property and absolutely not for properties bought off-plan. To be eligible for the residency visa, the purchase price of your property should exceed AED 1M or you must have more than three properties for a total value of AED 1M. Whatever the type of investment, the required amount must not be loaned. The Golden Visa can also be granted to specialized talents and researchers in the fields of science and knowledge.

  • Five-year Residency Visa: To obtain it, you must buy a property that is worth more than AED 5M, knowing that the purchase must not be based on a loan granted by any bank or financial institution. In addition, the purchased property will be retained for at least three years. This visa enables you to sponsor your family members as well. Under certain conditions, outstanding students are also eligible for the 5-year long-term visa.

  • Three-year Residency Visa: Issued by the DLD, this kind of visa is granted if you purchase a property in Dubai that is worth more than AED 1M. Once obtained, you are then eligible to become a UAE resident. Keep in mind that with the 3-year residency visa you are not authorized to spend more than six consecutive months abroad.

  • Six-month Multiple Entry Visa: This visa is available if your property price exceeds AED 1M and is issued by the immigration authorities. It allows you to make multiple entries over six months in any of the seven emirates.

  • Retirement Visa: Available only to retired residents over 55 years old and for 5 years, the retirement visa can be obtained if you purchase a property worth AED 2M, have financial savings of no less than AED 1M and an active income of no less than AED 20,000 per month. The retirement visa can be renewed if you meet the eligibility criteria

  • Citizenship Law: This new amended citizenship law is available for select expatriates such as investors, professionals and special talents, allowing them and their families to acquire the Emirati nationality under certain conditions. This new rule aims at motivating foreigners to have a residence in Dubai, thus increasing the demand for real estate.

Among other new governmental initiatives to attract foreigners, there is the self-sponsored remote work visa. It enables employees from all over the world to live here and work remotely for their companies that are based in another country from the UAE.

Once the long-term visa is granted, you can apply for a residence visa for your family with your sponsorship.


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