Saudi: Flats lie vacant; Owners offer attractive options to tenants

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With the exodus of expat families because of dependent’s fee, many buildings have flats lying vacant which is obvious from the “ijaar” (to-let) signs put up outside most of the buildings.

Property owners are offering reduced rents and affordable payment options to attract tenants or to stop the existing ones from vacating their buildings.

Abdulrahman Humeidan, a real estate investor, said that housing units which cost SR30,000 a year earlier are being offered at SR26,000 a year. But still there are no takers.

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So building owners are offering attractive options to tenants, he said.

“An option is to allow tenants to pay house rent every month or every three months without an increase in the rent. Earlier, tenants requesting monthly or tri-monthly payment of rent were asked to pay a higher amount,” said Humeidan.

He said annual profits for building owners have dropped by up to 25 percent.

Mohammed Al-Zahrani, an owner of a real estate agency, said, “Most, if not all, tenants are opting for monthly rent contracts because of the uncertainty about their stay in the Kingdom.”

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Mohammed Al-Hassan, a real estate expert, said there has been a sharp decline in house rents.

He attributed the reason to the exodus of expat families and locals leaving units for more affordable apartments.

A three-fold increase in electricity tariff is also one of the reasons why tenants are shifting from spacious accommodations to smaller residential units.


Source Credit: Saudi Gazette


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