Look after our properties!
A survey by Real Opinion claims that a majority of UAE homeowners are dissatisfied with the maintenance service offered by their developers.
August 16, 2009 1:54 by Aarti Nagraj
Most property owners in the UAE are unhappy with the management of their homes by developers, according to a survey conducted by Dubai-based market research company Real Opinions. Over nine in 10 homeowners in the UAE claim that the reputation of developers has been damaged by how they managed residential communities, says the survey. “Media reports in the UAE have documented the challenges some developers are having managing communities they have built,” said Dan Healy, CEO of Real Opinions in an emailed statement. “Owners are seeking value for money and expect their fees to be paying for the services and upkeep of their communities and not be diverted elsewhere for the benefit of the developer,” he added.
According to the survey, a majority of the respondents believed that developers don’t have the best interests of owners at heart when managing residential communities in the UAE.
“Unofficial Owners Associations are becoming much more sophisticated and organized by embracing the internet. They’re using Facebook and other social networking websites to interact with each other and to be a rallying point for owners,” said Healy.
“As a result of what appears to be an absence of a formal channel of communication, committees are even being formed to represent owners and are increasing their influence by engaging with not only their developers but also the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (Rera) in Dubai who are in the process of establishing guidelines for the industry in this emirate,” he added.
An expatriate home owner who participated in the survey said: “Owners have paid huge amounts of money for the property they bought. If the developer or another company will manage the facilities, they will again fleece the buyer. I think it will be best if the homeowners create a homeowners association like in the other parts of the world who are living in gated community to sign an agreement with a maintenance company to do the work.”
Property developers in the country, especially in Dubai, have been criticized extensively since the global financial crisis hit the UAE’s real estate market. In addition to cancellations and delays in construction, investors have now starting complaining about the management and maintenance of existing properties.
With disgruntled investors expressing their issues through the internet and media, will developers finally start taking note?