The Abu Dhabi property market heavily favoured renters and buyers in Q1 in 2018, with Bayut.com data showing price decreases in all areas.
Both apartments and villas across the sales and rental sectors became increasingly affordable in Q1, with the biggest decreases seen in rentals in Hydra Village, where 3-bed villa prices fell by 22% and were being offered for an average price of AED 85,000 per annum.
- Rental price decreases were seen in all areas of Abu Dhabi for apartments. The exception was for studio apartments in the Corniche Area, which increased by 7%.
- For villas, there were increases of 9% and 3% respectively for 3 and 5-bedroom villas in Mohammed bin Zayed City, and 2.8% for 3-beds in Al Mushrif. All other areas saw decreases or remained the same.
- After Hydra Village, the largest decreases were in Al Reem Island, where prices fell by 16% for a 2-bed apartment.
- Al Reef saw the largest decreases in sales asking prices, falling by 20% for a studio, followed by Yas Island, where prices fell by 16.3% for a 2-bed apartment. There was, however, a small increase of 0.3% in 3-bed villa prices on Yas Island.
- The outlying district of Al Ghadeer saw interest, however, with prices for 2-bedroom villas increasing by 9%.
In the off-plan market, interest continues to focus on Maryah Plaza – a development under construction on Al Maryah Island – which generated the most leads for Abu Dhabi off-plan properties. The buzz is likely to continue as the new Maryah Central mall opens by the end of the year.
Al Bandar and Shams Abu Dhabi also received high levels of interest, taking the second and third spots for the most popular off-plan developments after Maryah Plaza.
While sale and rental price decreases across Abu Dhabi may not be the news that landlords and sellers want to hear, current market conditions could give rise to considerable movement in 2018.
Price decreases in the rental sector will allow tenants to upgrade to larger spaces, move to a new district, or, take the plunge into property ownership, with softening prices making it a more affordable option.
Investors will also be watching with interest and to take advantage of lower prices to add to their portfolios.
The overall picture is one of decreases, but in addition to the limited number of areas that saw increases, there are also examples of price stability. For example, rent for 2-bedroom apartments in Al Khalidiyah, remained at AED 95,000 and 1-bed properties in Khalifa City A at AED 55,000. Sale prices for 4-bed properties in Al Raha Gardens also remained consistent at AED 3.4 million.
Other than Hydra Village, renters looking to upgrade from an apartment to a villa for the first time could look to Al Reef, where prices for a 3-bed property have fallen by 7.7% to AED 120,000.
Investors looking to add apartments to their portfolios may consider Al Reef and Al Ghadeer, where prices for studios, 1-bed and 2-bed properties are currently now all below the AED 1 million mark.