Renting in Dubai: What You Need to Know About Hidden Costs

Renting property in Dubai is an exciting opportunity, but it’s important to be aware of the additional expenses that come with it. On average, these costs can amount to 15%-30% of the annual rent. Here’s a breakdown of what you can expect when renting in this vibrant city.

Security Deposit

When renting in Dubai, tenants are required to pay a security deposit. For unfurnished properties, this is typically 5% of the annual rent, while for furnished properties, it is 10%. This deposit serves as a guarantee against property damage and is refundable upon vacating the property.

Ejari Registration

Dubai legislation mandates that all rental contracts be registered in the unified Ejari system. The cost of this registration is usually borne by the tenant and amounts to approximately AED 220 (USD 60).

Housing Fee

Tenants in Dubai are also subject to a housing fee, which is 5% of the annual rent. This fee is divided into 12 parts and included in the monthly Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) bill.

DEWA Utilities

Connection Fees

  • Apartment:
    • AED 2,000 (USD 545) (refundable upon check-out)
    • AED 110 (USD 30) (non-refundable activation fee)
    • AED 30 (USD 8) (additional fees)
  • Villa:
    • AED 4,000 (USD 1,100) (refundable upon check-out)
    • AED 294 (USD 80) (non-refundable activation fee)
    • AED 30 (USD 8) (additional fees)

The monthly DEWA bill is based on meter readings, with an average bill for a 1-bedroom apartment around AED 404 (USD 110).

District Cooling

District cooling charges are also included in the monthly DEWA bill. The consumption charge is AED 0.0037 (USD 0.001) per 1 RT (Refrigeration Ton), with a demand charge of AED 735 (USD 200) per RT per year, divided into monthly payments.

Moving Costs

Moving costs in Dubai start at AED 1,470 (USD 400) and vary depending on the size of the property and any additional services such as unpacking, storage, or insurance.

Agency Fee

An agency fee is typically required and averages around 5% of the annual rent.


When planning to rent in Dubai, it’s essential to budget for these additional costs to avoid any surprises. By understanding and preparing for these expenses, you can ensure a smooth and hassle-free renting experience in one of the world’s most dynamic cities.

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