By Anjana Kumar

The majority of Burj Khalifa unit owners are not inclined to sell their property in the secondary market and would rather look to lease them, real estate brokers say.

Rano Rahim, Portfolio Manager, Networth Real Estate, said most of the owners in Burj Khalifa are looking for a price appreciation.

“Further, almost 70 per cent of the people are not ready to sell the property as it has a brand value attached for them. They don’t mind putting it up for rent in order to earn returns on their property. Right now, people are only enquiring and asking for our advice on rents and sales values. Since their investment is so huge we are trying to get them the maximum returns,” she said.

Better Homes, which is handling more than 24 units in Burj Khalifa, said many of the clients are looking to lease the units rather than sell it.

Adam Farani, Residential Sales Consultant, Better Homes, said: “Many of our clients are retaining their apartments for lease instead of selling. There is a status element to owning such a unique property.”

According to Better Homes, the one-bedroom Armani Residence is around 1,000 square feet area and two bedroom is around 2,500 square feet area.

“Currently one-bedroom apartment is selling for between Dh10 million to Dh13 million,” said Farani. “A two-bedroom apartment with an approximate size of around 2,500 square feet area is currently in the range of Dh20 million and Dh25m.”

“There is more interest in rentals at the moment. Many of our clients have held onto these prestigious units for the last few years, so at this stage, they feel it’s a good option to lease them out instead of selling,” said Farani.

Rahim added: “One cannot push landlords to reduce prices so low. There can be only one tower like Burj Khalifa. It is not fair to the owners to think about original price and below original price.”

Mohanad Alwadiya, Managing Director, Harbor Real Estate, said; “The greater majority of owners are not selling lower than the original price value of the Burj Khalifa units. Even people who bought from Emaar in later stages for very high prices prefer to hold on to their units instead of selling them at lower prices.”

“We are expecting an increase in the prices of Burj Khalifa units as the hand-over of the tower begins. By that time, the rental market for Burj Khalifa will also start forming as well.”

He said current residential market prices in the tower was ranging between Dh3,200 per square foot and Dh4,200 per square foot. Emaar’s original price was between Dh2,500 per square foot and Dh3,600 per square foot.

Offices are currently priced in the range of Dh5,500 per square foot and Dh7,500 per square foot. Emaar’s original price (OP) was between Dh2,500 per square foot and Dh4,000 per square foot.

Better Homes said prices for corporate suites and offices between level 113 and 150 is selling between Dh4,500 per square foot and Dh5,000 per square foot.

Rental for the same are between Dh400 per square foot per annum and Dh600 per square foot per annum.

Alwadiya said majority of the owners will be from the owner-occupier segment which will further impact the number of units offered for rent.

He said all the buyers in Burj Khalifa are cash buyers. Networth Real Estate anticipates many bank and company CEOs to take up tenancies in the tower.

“The CEOs will prefer to stay there since it is closer to the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). These CEOs are living in downtown and since these rents are economical they may want to shift over there,” Rahim said.