Live and work in Dubai

To live and work in the UAE as an expatriate, it is necessary to obtain a residence visa and an Emirati ID through employment or family sponsorship. It is essential to have your own residence visa before you can sponsor your family members. There are various documentation requirements to apply for visas, some of which will need to be prepared before you arrive, so make sure you allow enough time and have all the correct information related to your individual circumstances.

Leasing contracts

The lease agreements we use are standard Dubai Land Department leases and as such the Terms and Conditions cannot be changed.

Additional pages (Appendix/Annex) of the Terms and Conditions used in DRIVEN PROPERTIES are in accordance with RERA's guidelines and are fair to both parties. Clauses not covered by law and regulation may be negotiable at the time an offer is made, at the discretion of each party to the agreement.

There is usually an early termination clause specified in the terms and conditions of a lease. This clause protects both tenants and landlords in cases where the lease is terminated early, due to job loss or unforeseen circumstances. The duration of the notice period and the value of the penalty are not stipulated by law, so they are left to the discretion of the owners. The accepted standard term is 60 days notice and 60 days of penalty; These conditions must be negotiated at the time of making an offer for the property.

Security deposit

To secure your new home you will need to pay a refundable security deposit to the landlord, this is usually 5% of the annual rent, in the case of fully furnished properties the security deposit is 10%.

Cash, check or bank transfer is made payable to the renter or Power Of Attorney (POA). Please note that the security deposit is non-refundable before the lease begins, so if you decide to cancel the agreement prior to the lease start date, you may lose your security deposit return.

Security deposits for utilities

Security deposits for utility registration is a standard requirement. The amount of utilities to be registered and the deposits required are subject to the community/building in which you reside.

The value of the security deposit may vary according to buildings and providers. Usually the largest deposit amount goes to DEWA (Dubai Electricity and Water Authority); $1,100 security deposit required for a villa and $550 for an apartment *Prices are based on 2022 rates and are subject to change by DEWA without notice.

Annual rent

Once the security deposit has been paid and the lease has been issued by our contracts department, the standard procedure is to pay the full annual rental value to the landlord (in one check or checks, depending on the agreement). The owner will not sign the contract until payments have been received; this is the usual practice in the UAE, before you register with RERA.

Agency fee

This is a standard rate throughout the market, and is paid by the tenant at lease signing. Our agency fees are 5% of the annual rent, or a minimum of 1,400 USD.

Municipal taxes

The municipal tax, known as the housing tax, is 5% of your property's annual rent, paid over a 12-month period, and will be included in your monthly electricity and water (DEWA) bill. This fee is paid by all expatriate tenants in the UAE.


By law, landlords must cover all major maintenance on their properties. Major maintenance typically covers air conditioning, building structure, plumbing, water, and electrical (for example: broken water pump or wiring fault). All minor maintenance is the responsibility of the tenant. As for minor maintenance, pool maintenance, garden maintenance and pest control are usually the responsibility of the tenant during the rental period. There will often be a specific amount in dirhams, stated in the additional terms and conditions of the leases. It is important that you know the coverage specified in your rental agreement and your responsibilities as a renter.

Contract records - EJARI

Ejari is an initiative implemented by RERA (Real Estate Regulatory Authority) to regulate and facilitate the Dubai rental market. It is a system that also helps regulate the relationship between landlords and tenants in Dubai. The Ejari is also an essential government document, necessary to help sponsor your family's residency visas.

Pre-registration inspection

Once you have identified the property, you will need to complete a list of drawbacks or a pre-entry inspection, if necessary. Many owners don’t agree with long wish lists of items that need to be changed/fixed prior to move-in. We will endeavor to negotiate with the owner regarding any work needed, but it is the owner's decision what will be completed prior to move-in.

Handover of the property

It is the lessor's responsibility to deliver the property in a clean state and in good condition. Please note that the landlord's standard of cleaning may not be the same as your own, and you may elect to have the property re-cleaned at your own expense.

Moving permissions

Please note that most communities require that you obtain a moving permit prior to delivery of fixtures, furniture, or equipment from an appliance store. The permit may take a minimum of 3-5 days to obtain from the time of application. The permit application can only be submitted once you have the signed lease, the receipt for the water and electricity connection and the Ejari certificate.

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