Khaleej Times, 26 November, 2018
The Dubai Land Department (DLD) confirmed that the lowered service fees for co-owned properties in Dubai’s freehold areas contributed to the attraction of real estate projects.
This is due to the regulatory laws for this activity, notably Law No 27 of 2007 on co-ownership, and the circulars issued by DLD and the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (Rera) that underpinned the importance of service fees. Also, Rera required service management companies in these projects to provide full disclosure of the financial statements for service fees and submit them to it for an audit prior to going to the owners and demanding payment.
Marwan bin Ghalita, CEO of RERA, stressed RERA’s regulatory and supervisory role in avoiding the existence of clauses not previously known to buyers, adding: “RERA requires management companies to present all their financial statements to the owners’ associations for pre-approval. Companies are also required to submit their budgets for audit by a financial audit company registered with Rera, and then submit it to Rera for an audit review so that it may be applied should the budget check out.”
When comparing the rate of services between 2017 and 2018, a survey conducted by Rera reveals that fees decreased in 11 areas across different regions of Dubai, reaching up to 12 per cent in some areas.
Bin Ghalita stressed the need to obtain Rera’s approval for the collection of service fees and the need for cooperation between owners in reducing the use of energy. This will result in a rationalisation of expenditures, significantly contributing to the reduction of service fees, especially as combined energy charges (electricity and central cooling) amount to 45 to 65 per cent of the total service fees.