Is Getting a Home Insurance in Dubai the Best Option For You?

home insurance in dubaiHome insurance is not the most popular type of insurance policy in Dubai. This is due to the current peace and order situation in the emirate. In fact, Dubai is a relatively peaceful city with no significant cases of theft and burglaries. However, it’s still advisable to get a home insurance, because it will also protect you from other unforeseen incidents like leakages and flooding, fire, accidental damages and vandalism. So, having a home insurance will not only protect you from burglaries and theft, but it will also protect your property from several eventualities that might happen in the future.

Basically, a standard home insurance policy can insure the contents of your home. But the policy can also be tailored according to your preferences. You can include a tenant’s liability coverage that will cover for cases where the tenant is legally liable for the damage in your property. You can also extend your policy and add accident insurance coverage for domestic helpers. In most cases, plan holders will also integrate compensation for use of alternative accommodation. This particular policy will provide you the means to receive an amount from the insurance company, in case your home becomes uninhabitable.

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What You Need To Do First Before You Move To Dubai

Living In DubaiDubai is considered as one of the most popular destinations in the world, and the number of expatriates or would-be investors is mounting very fast.  In fact, people who dream of moving or working in the UAE were inspired by stories of a tax-free lifestyle. It looks like everyone wants to experience something new and Dubai for them has everything they ever wanted. However, Dubai is not as easy as it once was and securing a residence permit can be quite daunting these days.

However Dubai can still offer some decent tax benefits for those who want to move in. You can still enjoy a high standard of living in the emirate, as long as you can find decent employment or a lucrative venture that can provide for all your needs. So, if you’re dreaming about Dubai, then you should consider these things first.

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Understanding Sharia Law When Investing In Dubai

Sharia Law in InheritanceThe real estate opportunities in the UAE are mounting very fast and a lot of foreign investors are interested in buying properties in the country. There are several reasons why UAE has become a dream destination for foreign investors. One in particular is Dubai and its booming economy through tourism and trade. It also boasts some man made marvels like Burj Khalifa which hold the record as one of the tallest buildings in the world. Dubai is also known for its luxurious hotels and breathtaking nightspots. Not to mention, the economic and architectural progress of other emirates within the country. These factors have catapulted UAE as one of the most privileged real estate hubs in the world.

However, before you decide to invest in the UAE, it’s essential for you to know and understand Islamic Law or better known as “Sharia Law.”

So What Exactly Is Sharia?

Sharia is the religious law or moral code of Islam and it deals with many topics including politics, crime, personal matters and economics. For this particular purpose, we are going to tackle on the most pressing issue that most foreign investors are concerned about – inheritance under Sharia Law. Investing in the UAE can be a lucrative venture, but most investors should be thinking on how they can protect their assets, especially if the owner/s of a particular property dies.

In Islamic Law, there are four important duties that need to be performed when the owner/s of a property dies and these are the following:

  1. Pay the debts of the deceased.
  2. Funeral and burial expenses must also be paid in full.
  3. Execute the will of the deceased, which usually gives the testator (owner/s of the will) the right to dispose one third of the estate they own according to their wishes.
  4. Distribute the remaining estate to immediate family and relatives as per rules of priority (Quota).

Therefore, Muslim property owners in the UAE who follows the Sharia Law can only dispose 1/3 of their overall estate under their testamentary will. That’s the maximum share that they can delegate to their chosen heir/s, because the remaining portion of their estate will be lawfully given to other family members and relatives.

Actually, there are different types of heirs and these are the following:

  • Primary Heirs – this group will consist of the spouse, son or daughter, and both parents of the deceased.
  • Quota-Heirs – this can be grandparents, wife/wives and husband, daughters, brothers, sisters and others. Usually, this group has a designated share or quota on the estate or property.
  • Residuaries or Members of the Asaba – this can be a combination of both male and female relatives who will inherit a share after the Quota-heirs inheritance have been distributed.

So, if an owner of an estate leaves no direct relative, then his/her property will directly go the state treasury. But Sharia Law only applies to Muslims in the UAE, however for non-Muslim expats and foreign investors living in the country are allowed under “Personal Affairs Law” to use the laws of their own countries in settling and distributing their properties that are situated in the UAE.

How Can You Protect Your Real Property or Estate In The UAE?

In order for you to protect your property in the UAE, you need to have a legal and valid will and it should be notarized by a UAE court. Expatriates and foreign investors who have several properties throughout the UAE must create their own will as soon as possible. This will exempt them from Sharia Law. Also, it would be wise to appoint a specialist or a credible lawyer who is qualified to draft your will in accordance to the laws of your home country. This will give you and your family the peace of mind that Sharia Law does not come into effect, in case something happens to you in the UAE.

It’s also important for you to distinguish between federal (UAE law) and local law. So, if you’re residing in Dubai and something happens to you, then the law in Dubai will take effect. However, if someone contests you will, then federal law takes over. You need to understand that federal law trumps local law in Dubai. So, you might be asking – how can I truly protect my property and the welfare of my family? Well, the only remedy available to you is to setup trusts or you can also engage in various off-shore solutions. However, this is a complex area and it’s essential for you to hire professional lawyers who are capable of advising you expertly.

Writing Wills: Its Importance and Methods You Can Use To Set Your Will

WillsThere are many reasons why people make a last will and testament, but the most obvious one is to ensure that his/her personal possessions and assets are lawfully distributed to the people that matters most. This could be his/her family, relatives or someone close to the testator (the one making the will).

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The Benefits of eMart and Its Significance to the Real Estate Market in Dubai

emart portalSmart Property Marketplace or better known as eMart is now an active portal launched by the Dubai Land Department. This new online portal will provide a platform for auctions, sales and property rentals in the UAE. It will also serve as an exchange center to facilitate real estate information. An initiative like this will guarantee credibility and transparency in all transactions carried out by the Land Department.

As of 2013, the “World Bank’s Doing Business Index” has ranked the Land Department of Dubai as the fourth best in the world when it comes to property registration and real estate. The LD is also ranked by the index as the best in the Arab world for its outstanding services. With the new eMart initiative, brokers and investors in the real estate industry will truly benefit from fast and accurate online services offered by the portal. This will also facilitate and streamline search operations, thus providing a credible resource for investors in Dubai.

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85% Mortgage Loan in Dubai Will Only Be Effective Until End of the Month

Mortgage Loan Rules in DubaiAll mortgage pre-approval letters issued by UAE banks will only be valid until the end of November. Therefore, mortgage pre-approval letters will no longer be valid on December 1. This information has been divulged by a mortgage consultant in a top local bank in Dubai. So, if you want to avail of the 85% home finance, then you only have approximately 20 days to complete your transaction. By December this year, banks will be following the new guidelines on mortgages that were set by the UAE Central Bank late last month.

Basically, this new mortgage lending regulation will only allow banks to loan up to 75% of the property value to expatriates and 80% to Emiratis. These new rules will be published in the official Gazette by January 2014, but banks are obligated to enforce these new guidelines one month before the said publication. Also, home buyers will no longer be able to use their credit cards in meeting their downpayment requirements as well as seek personal loans when the new regulations take effect.

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