Whether you're moving to Dubai to start a business or find a job, you'll find it helpful to research housing costs in Dubai and set a budget.

The cost of living in Dubai is quite high, let's face it. Even with the COVID-19 pandemic and the liberalization of oil prices, life in Dubai remains expensive. Since EXPO-2020 opened, the number of visitors has increased several times, leading to an increase in property rental prices.

What is the cost of renting a place to live in Dubai?

One of the main factors determining how expensive life in Dubai will be for you is the choice of place to live. In Dubai's downtown area, renting an apartment is very expensive, but you can save significantly by renting an apartment in the Old City or outlying areas. The majority of expats rent a bed in a shared room, which can accommodate two to five people. Alternatively, you can rent a private room or studio if sharing isn't an option for you.

See how much it might cost you to rent accommodation in Dubai with our easy guide.

Renting in Dubai Average monthly cost
A bed in a shared room AED 1300 (355 USD)
A studio AED 4500 (1125 USD)
1 bedroom apartment (city center) AED 10,000 (2722 USD)
1 bedroom apartment (elite expat communities) AED 7500 (2040 USD)
2 bedroom apartment (city center) AED 18,500 (5040 USD)
3 bedroom apartment (elite expat communities) AED 30,000 (8170 USD)

Basic Document Checklist:

  • Passport copy
  • Residence Visa copy
  • Emirates ID copy
  • Security deposit cheque; typically, 5% of the annual rental amount for unfurnished, or 10% for furnished properties
  • Agency fee cheque; typically, 5% of the annual rental amount

To secure a property, follow these steps:

  • You must pay a refundable deposit to the landlord to secure a home. Before releasing the deposit, ask your agent to verify the property ownership, or you may do it yourself here.
  • Request a receipt and a copy of the landlord's passport once you've paid the security deposit.

To draft a tenancy agreement, the following documents are required:

  • Passport copy
  • Residence Visa copy
  • Emirates ID copy
  • Confirmation of payment of security deposit

Remember to go over each provision carefully before signing a contract, making a note of anything you don't understand. Never allow any opportunity for ambiguity, as this might lead to a provision being interpreted differently later on, and perhaps not in your favour.

Following the signing of your tenancy agreement, you must pay the following fees:

  • Agency fee payment (typically 5 percent of the rental amount)
  • Cheques for rental payments with a post-dated date

Ensure you receive a receipt of payment for the agency fee, as well as copies of each rent cheque.

To register your tenancy contract with Ejari, you must prepare the following documents:

  • A tenancy agreement that has been signed in its whole (by tenant and landlord)
  • Payment of security deposit and rent cheques confirmation
  • A copy of the Deed of Title (obtained from landlord)
  • Passport copy
  • Residence Visa copy
  • Emirates ID copy
  • Passport copy of landlord
  • If the landlord lives abroad, the contract can be executed with the use of a Power of Attorney (POA). In this situation, you'll need a copy of the legal POA as well as a copy of the POA on your passport.

You will get the official Ejari contract, which includes a unique Ejari ID number after your registration is complete. This number is required to open a DEWA account, which you can now do effortlessly online.


1) What is Ejari?

Ejari translates to “my rent” in English. The Ejari system is a contract registration platform run by the Dubai Land Department (DLD) that allows renters and landlords to validate rental contracts and agreements.

The system is in place to ensure that all private rental contracts are written into legally enforceable papers and organized in the government-approved style.

2) Is it the landlord or the renter who is responsible for contract registration?

Normally, the landlord is responsible for registering the tenancy contract with Ejari. This is usually delegated to the real estate agent by the landlord. But in practice, though, the renter can process by themselves.

You must double-check that your Ejari has all deposits, contract term, and rent amounts.

3) Where is the location of an Ejari Typing Centre?

Al Manara Centre, Al Barsha Mall, Oud Metha, Port Saeed, and Zabeel all have Ejari typing centers.

Cost of utilities in Dubai

However, let's take a look at typical costs, excluding rent. The cost of living in Dubai is broken down into two categories: singles and families. The table below might help you estimate how much money you'll need each month:

Living expenses in Dubai (excluding rent) Average Cost
Per month, a single individual AED 3,406 (927 USD)
Per month, a four-person family AED 11,738 (3195 USD)

The total cost of your utilities will, of course, be determined by your specific preferences for services. Your monthly expenditures will be determined by the sort of internet and TV bundle you choose, as well as your mobile plan. However, there are some costs that are shared by all residents of Dubai.

The most essential of them is your DEWA bill (which stands for Dubai Electricity and Water Authority). The monthly DEWA cost for a 900 sq. ft. flat, for example, is roughly 600 AED. Of course, the precise figure will vary depending on how much you consume.

Etisalat and Du are the primary providers of internet and television bundles. The basic internet and TV bundle costs up to AED 300 per month, and their deals differ regularly. Premium packages, on the other hand, cost more than AED 1,000.

Lastly, your telephone bill is likely to be in the range of AED 125 to AED 500. This, like everything else, is depending on the quantity of data and minutes you receive each month.

Here’s how to obtain a DEWA connection

Due to newly linked Ejari and DEWA systems, after your Ejari contract has been registered, you will get an electronic DEWA connection procedure. Here's what to do once you've got it:

  • Download the DEWA Smart Application and follow the steps
  • Provide your Ejari contract number, Emirates ID, and a copy of your passport
  • Use the online payment channel to pay the refundable DEWA deposit (AED 2,000 for flats, AED 4,000 for villas).
  • Use the online payment gateway to pay the non-refundable connection cost (between AED 110 and AED 300).

Note: beware of any pending DEWA payments

Previous tenants may not have paid their DEWA bill before leaving the property, which means you won't be able to have your connection until the outstanding payment is made.

Before signing your lease, double-check with the landlord that the prior tenant's last bills have been paid.

The Make Fortune Business Solutions team is here to assist you in choosing to buy or rent a property. We work only with independent realtors who can offer you the best options and process all paperwork quickly.

If you have questions, please leave your contact information, and we will contact you soon.