An Answer (Five Months Late)

Back in July, I wrote about people living in Al Ain and working in Dubai, and in the comments it was asked about average rent in Al Ain, which I didn't know. The Gulf News had an article the other day that seems to answer this question;

According to Asteco's latest figures, annual rent for a new three-bedroom villa at the town centre now hovers around Dh60,000 to Dh75,000, or about Dh15,000 to Dh25,000 more expensive than last year.

On average, current rates for old three-, four- and five-bedroom villas are at Dh45,000, Dh60,000 and Dh70,000 while prices for new villas are at Dh60,000, Dh75,000 and Dh85,000. The figures represent a 35 to 40 per cent rise from last year.

Some new residential properties fetch an annual rent of Dh100,000 to Dh120,000 while office space commands Dh500 to 750 per square metre, depending on location.

So there you go. It is cheaper than Dubai and Abu Dhabi, but getting more expensive (up 30% this year). The story lists several reasons for the increase in demand, but leaves out one really big factor. The additional restrictions on the Al Ain-Buraimi border crossing caused many people who had formerly lived in Buraimi (which has lower rents) and worked in Al Ain to move to Al Ain.

Also, when considering the article, there is one small mistake and one big mistake. It lists the population of Al Ain as 300,000. The Al Ain Times had reported that the population, according to the most recent census, is 400,000. But that is nothing compared to "property prices in Al Ain may be rising, but the emirate is still much cheaper compared to Dubai and Abu Dhabi". Unless I missed it, Al Ain is still just the second largest city in the emirate of Abu Dhabi.

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