By Livia Anzaldo www.gulfnews.com
Q With Palm Jumeirah villa prices rising again, do you think it’s a good time to buy? I’ve viewed a few Garden Villas and am quite satisfied with the standards. My only concern is whether there will be another dip in prices. Obviously, I want to buy at the right time.
A Properties in Palm Jumeirah have always been in demand, even when prices dropped in early 2009. The island remains an excellent and exclusive community to invest in and live. Important points you should take into consideration are: the lack of land availability in the area and the continuing demand by the expatriate community due to the great lifestyle available. It is unlikely, however, that prices will go through another dip. It seems we are heading back to a more stable environment and prices will start to rise at a steady pace.
Q Marina Residences compared to Oceana – which development is more family friendly? What are the pros and cons of each?
A If you are looking for a more family friendly project, Oceana is a more attractive development due to its location and amenities. It has a private beach, beautiful and large apartments overlooking the marina, a lazy river water ride, infinity pools and a state-of-the-art gym complex. However, you should be aware of the fact that maintenance fees are higher at Oceana than Marina Residences. A typical two-bedroom 1,700ft² apartment should cost you Dh44,000 per year, whereas with Marina Residences fees at Dh19/ft², this should save you about Dh15,000 per year in fees for a similar unit.
Q We’re currently renting a unit at the Shoreline Apartments and enjoy the lifestyle there so much that we’re now looking to buy an apartment. However, we’re wondering whether there are any other apartment complexes on Palm Jumeirah that are also worth considering?
A I could not agree more! The Shoreline Apartments are the best in terms of facilities and retail, even if these are a bit outdated compared to Oceana, Tiara Residence and Marina Residences. I live there too and recommend Shoreline Apartments as the best value for money at the moment. Banks are lending up to 85 per cent loan-to-value (LTV) for Palm Jumeirah, which makes it a lot more appealing for buyers in this restrictive banking market.
Q Now that the Dubai Pearl has been relaunched, hopefully bringing much needed retail to the area, do you think this is a vote of confidence for the Palm Jumeirah? Are properties on the Palm likely to hold their value in the long-term?
A Dubai Pearl is still a long way from delivery date and is a project in its own right. Its mix-use status should add to the attraction of living in Palm Jumeirah and when its numerous commercial spaces become available this will attract more people to live on the Palm. At this stage, it is hard to predict stock availability as such; it is very difficult to project whether Palm Jumeirah prices will be affected. I would prefer a more conservative approach at this stage and would think that there is no correlation of the price curve between both projects.