When renting a property in Dubai, a passport copy with residence visa is required by the landlord. However, if the lease is to be in the company name (as opposed to an individual's name) a trade license copy is also required.
Generally, rent is paid annually in advance in one cheque. Sometimes landlords will accept rent paid by two cheques but with a post-dated cheque for the second six month's rent. A refundable security deposit is also required by landlords until the tenant finally leaves the property and has paid the final DEWA (electricity and water) bill, providing there is no damage to the property.
A non-refundable deposit is paid to the landlord in order to book/reserve a property until the contract/lease is drawn up. The booking deposit becomes the refundable security deposit upon the signing of the contract/lease.
All tenancy contracts have to be registered with the Dubai Land Department through the Ejari process in order for them to be legal. This costs approximately Dhs 200.
All real estate agents in Dubai charge a one-off Agency Fee of 5% of the first year's rent (regardless of the length of lease), payable by the tenant in advance of renting a property. Landlords in Dubai pay no fees or charges to real estate agents.
Prior to moving into a property, DEWA (electricity and water) re-connection needs to take place. The Property Shop can do this process on your behalf for a small fee. For re-connection, DEWA require: trade license copy (if the lease is in a company's name), passport and visa copies, copy of the lease, Emirates ID copy, either Dhs 4000 refundable deposit for a villa or Dhs 2000 deposit for an apartment, plus a reconnection fee of Dhs 110. There is a 5% (of the annual rent) Housing Fee, which is included on your monthly DEWA bills.