If you are reading this article then you are in one of the many stages of investing in real estate in Dubai. Well whatever stage you are in, it is a must to be aware of certain prerequisites. While we spend much time researching the type of property, its location advantage and so on we tend to miss out on factors like visa requirements, application process and the attached costs. It is to be noted, that all visas are to be issued through the usual channels being the UAE Ministry of Interior Department of Residency and Naturalisation.

It is worthy to know that not all projects guarantee a residency visa, so check first if this is an important requirement. For instance, the value of the property at the time of purchase should have been more than AED 1 million and this must be for a single property only, and not a combined value of two or more. Future increases in value are not considered for valuations. For example, Mr. Z bought a property for AED 800,000 and it is now considered to be valued at AED 1.5 million, this will not be considered. The property must also be owned outright.

You are entitled to either a six-month multi-entry visa or a two-year residency visa is available depending on the circumstances. Also, in accordance with standard Dubai rules, visa applicants must take a medical examination and must have Dubai Health Authority compliant medical insurance. A property related visa does not permit an individual to work in the UAE, but only to reside here.

Professional services (PRO) organisations would be able to assist you in securing a visa. It is advisable to speak to a few references from your known sources, to check the repute of the firm you are engaging. You may also check with your developer.

Prerequisite conditions of the property for visa eligibility:
  • The property should be owned by the applicant;
  • The property should be an apartment or a villa;
  • Property must be finished and suitable to live in;
  • It should be in a free hold area;
  • The property purchased value should be AED 1 million or above;
  • Properties with multiple owners must cost AED1 million per shareholder;
  • The property should not be a lease to the owner for a tenure or up to 99 years;
  • If the property is mortgaged, then a minimum 50% of the mortgage should have been cleared. One has to present a loan statement of account from bank;
  • The tile deed should be issued from Dubai land department
Document Requirements
  • Title deed original and copy;
  • Passport copy for yourself (Spouse / family if applicable);
  • Photographs for yourself (Spouse / family if applicable) (about six each);
  • Copy of the current visa;
  • Certificate of good conduct from the department of police;
  • Application process: one can get application forms from the reception in the ground floor by presenting the original tile deed and the original passport, and apply this form in police station in Dubai, once you get the certificate, apply all the requirements mentioned above in customer services desk in the ground floor.
  • DEWA bill in case it is mentioned a land in the tile deed instead of a villa
How to apply for the visa
  • Visit the Land Department and hand over your Title Deed and passports enquiring for the concerned section for property purchase related residency visa. You will be provided with a letter in Arabic, which is to be taken to the Dubai Police to get your letter confirming your (and your spouse/family if applicable) good standing;
  • Hand over the letter provided by the Land Department with copies of your passports at the Police department as instructed by the former. You may not require your passport copies if you previously have had an Emirates ID, but best to take just incase. Here you will be charged a AED 220 fee for each Dubai Police letter, and your letter(s) should be returned to you within two working days;
  • Apply with all the above mentioned at customer services in the ground floor and pay AED 440;
  • Check after five working days for the final approval (some applications get delayed by more than 5 working days.)
  • After you receive the approval, you have to pay AED 8,440 for visa license;
  • After three working days, you will need to bring the original tile deeds to be linked with your visa;
  • At this stage the process gets transferred to the immigration in the second floor for typing of visa application and issue of the permit of entry;
  • The visa is for two years and it's renewable;
  • In case the applicant needs to travel post application, he can provide power of attorney to somebody, and it should be mentioned in the statement so as to complete the immigration process.
  • Application fees: AED 440
  • Visa license fee: AED 8,440 and renewable every four years
  • AED 540 for linking the title deed with the visa
  • Entry visa application: AED 1080
  • To change status: AED 560
  • Medical test: AED 750
  • Emirates ID: AED 270
  • Visa Stamping: AED 710
  • Deposit for dependents: AED 3,000 per dependent
Helpful tips and advice
  • Have photocopies of all documents and passport(s);
  • Carry an adequate amount of passport photos;
  • Keep sufficient cash, including change for photocopy machines;
  • Make a note of all receipts, and get copies as sometimes they could be retained;
  • Ensure that you have the letter from the mortgaging bank to the Land Department;
  • For your information, Dubai Police headquarters is located next Al Qiyadah Station and the Land Department is at a walking distance from Union Station.
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