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What you can do if your property project is on hold
According to a recent report, 243 real estate developments in Dubai have either stalled or been cancelled. Here are six courses of action if it happens to you.
March 8, 2010 3:09 by Aarti Nagraj
Dubai’s property sector witnessed a massive collapse after the global financial crisis, and developers and investors in the emirate are still struggling to come to terms with it. The new project launches have dried up, and according to research firm Proleads, 243 of the 1,110 construction projects in Dubai were cancelled or indefinitely on hold last year. Most of the remaining projects were delayed, Proleads said.
So if you are one of those unfortunate investors who pumped in money into a stalled development, what can you do?
1. Go to the property court
Immediately after the real estate crash in 2008, the local government announced a Dubai Property Court to exclusively deal with real estate disputes. The court was formed with a specialist bench of judges with experience in dealing with property disputes, and authorities said that it also had access to a panel of surveyors, engineers, architects, accountants and other property experts for technical advice. Between January and May last year, the court registered 520 cases.
2. Take free legal advice
In November last year, the Dubai Land Department announced an initiative to give property owners free legal advice. The authority signed on a number of law firms to join the Legal Care Group, which it said was set up to guide investors who have “genuine real estate issues”, but who had previously been reluctant to file cases against developers due to the hefty legal fees.
Mohammed Sultan Thani, assistant director general of the Dubai Land Department, said: “The objective of this initiative is not merely to meet a need but to ensure fairness and justice is available to anyone who might have a concern which involves property, no matter their circumstances.”
“Now, no one is prevented from pursuing their rights merely because of the possibility they might be priced out of the legal system,” he added.