A firm grasp on property: this week’s roundup
Abu Dhabi developer offering the capital’s first rent-to-own deal; Nakheel ex-chief claims breach of contract; and DIFC courts uphold ruling against Damac
June 27, 2011 3:19 by Eva Fernandes
The UAE’s property sector is undeniably dynamic—and that’s a double-edged compliment. Kipp’s happy to see it move forward but that movement, we suspect, will remain sluggish until the rest of the baggage has been dealt with.
And this week, the sector has received lukewarm (more cold then hot) news this week:
Abu Dhabi’s first rent-to-own offer: Though variations of this policy have been in place in Dubai for some time, Sorouh is the first developer in Abu Dhabi offering investors a chance to take advantage of their rent-to-own option in Sun Tower on Reem Island. After three years of paying rent at a fixed price, investors will be allowed the option to buy the apartment. As the deal stands, buyers can convert up to 90 percent of the rent paid into equity. Sorouh’s executive director of sales and marketing Paul Middleton said: “In any market, when the sentiment is poor, you have to bring different products to the table.”
Not-so-amicable break-up: So remember Nakheel’s chief executive Chris O’Donnell who left Nakheel earlier this month, as Nakheel claimed “after completing his contract terms”. Well it turns out not everyone agrees with that statement. Especially O’Donnell himself, who has filed a breach of contract lawsuit against the troubled developer. “Nakheel does not comment on legal proceedings” was the response of a Nakheel’s spokesman, and as the “claim filed with the Dubai World Tribunal will not be made public until Nakheel formally responds” it will only be a matter of weeks till we get to find out what went down with Donnell…
And finally, remember the Irish couple, the Gaffneys, who had won something of a one-of-a-kind judgment in the DIFC Courts earlier this year April, when the courts awarded the Gaffneys Dh1,781,009 from Damac as a refund of payments they made towards apartment 602 in Tower B of the Park Towers. Though the Gaffneys were quick to celebrate, Damac argued that the Gaffneys hadn’t given them sufficient time to respond to the case. But late last week, the DIFC courts dismissed Damac’s plea to have the earlier ruling overlooked.