Despite the stiff competition from the bigger emirates of Dubai and Abu Dhabi, both Sharjah and Ajman have remained strong contenders for affordable, family-friendly living in the UAE as per Bayut’s end of year market report for 2019.
Transactions have also gone up in these cities thanks to the attractive prices and innovative resolutions passed by the governments in both cities. According to the Sharjah Real Estate Registration Department, 61,357 transactions were recorded in 2019, an increase of 13.4% compared to the property transactions in 2018. Sharjah based real estate developer Arada also reported a 33% increase in sales in 2019, showing a growing interest in the primary segment of Sharjah’s real estate market. Ajman and Sharjah have benefitted from the increased attention thanks to the new long-term visa rules, which gives real estate investors the added bonus of longer residency permits.
When it comes to the popular locations to live in Sharjah and Ajman, areas such as Al Majaz, Al Khan, Ajman Downtown and Al Nuaimiya have retained their appeal over the course of 2019 with both buyers and tenants, thanks to prices becoming more affordable compared to 2018.
The price trends for renting and buying apartments in Sharjah for 2019 are in line with the patterns seen in the neighbouring emirate of Dubai.
When it comes to Sharjah’s rental market, Al Majaz, Al Taawun and Al Nahda have held strong in 2019, with competitive prices ranging between AED 17k to AED 20k on average for studios, AED 25k to AED 28k for 1-bedroom units and AED 33k to AED 37k for larger 2-bedroom units.
Similarly, for apartment sales, Bayut reports that Al Majaz, Al Khan, Al Nahda and Al Taawun have remained popular with buyers and investors with average price per square foot of AED 381, AED 430, AED 352 and AED 362 respectively. The only area that has experienced an increase in price per square foot is Muweilah, rising by just over 6% to AED 975 in 2019. There are multiple factors that have attracted a large number of investors to the area, including the availability of newer, bigger properties close to the Sharjah University City.
For villas in Sharjah, Hoshi has remained the most sought after option with potential buyers, while Al Azra has retained the interest of tenants.
Areas which have continued to offer high ROI in Sharjah include Al Taawun and Al Majaz, with rental yields of 7% and above.
The primary market in Sharjah has also picked up in 2019, with areas such as Aljada, Muwaileh and Sharjah Waterfront City garnering interest. The superior finishing and good payment plans for projects such as Maryam Island and Al Zahia have also attracted expat residents wanting to make long-term investments in the UAE’s cultural capital.
Ajman has also sustained interest from buyers and tenants with prices becoming more competitive across 2019. In the rental market, established districts such as Al Nuaimiya, Ajman Downtown and Al Rashidiya, which are closer to the centre of the city, have remained popular options. Prices across the board have decreased by an average of 8% plus, in line with trends observed in other emirates.
Ajman Downtown and Al Rashidiya have also dominated the sales segment, along with Emirates City. The price per square foot to buy apartments in Ajman ranges between AED 200 to AED 500, making it a good option for those on budget.
For those interested in independent houses in Ajman, Al Mowaihat has retained its spot as the top choice for potential homeowners. Al Rawda has continued to attract tenants looking for larger, family-friendly units.
Al Nuaimiya is a good option for investors looking to get good rental yield with an ROI of 11%. Other areas with healthy ROI include Garden City, Emirates City and Ajman Downtown.
The primary market in Ajman continues to offer upscale units in upcoming areas such as Ajman Uptown and Emirates City.
Bayut’s CEO Haider Ali Khan commented on the trends and said:
“Sharjah and Ajman closely follow trends in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Similar results were observed throughout 2019 with prices declining in Sharjah and Ajman, however growth in terms of inventory and supply was also seen in these markets. This year, there have been several handovers in both cities, including reputed projects such as Al Zahia and Nasma Residences in Sharjah, and the Ajman Corniche Residence in the UAE’s smallest emirate.
The growth in Sharjah’s off-plan segment has enabled agencies and developers to capitalise on a wider profile of investors. Projects like Aljada and Sharjah Waterfront City have gained a lot of popularity with both local and expat communities. As these projects mature and attract more investors, the real estate market in Sharjah is expected to grow further in the coming months. The Sharjah government announcing their highest annual budget so far, is a pretty promising sign, clearly showing that there is a consistent effort towards bringing in more development to the emirate.
Ajman’s strategic move to open up the freehold market earlier on, has certainly proved beneficial. The expat-friendly freehold communities have continued to remain popular with residents, and newer developments such as Ajman Uptown are also capitalising on this trend by offering properties that are integrated with comparable facilities. These new projects also offer the added security of living in a gated community, a big factor that contributes to the decision making of a lot of homebuyers from different nationalities, thus fulfilling the needs of a more global audience.”