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Qatar residential rents stable in Q4

Residential rents in Qatar were broadly stable across all locations in Q4, compared to the previous quarter, although villas in some premium locations experienced small rental hikes due to constrained supply of good quality stock, said a report.

There had been a 35 per cent jump in the value and a 20 per cent increase in the volume of property sales in Doha Municipality last year, compared to the previous year, according to property expert Asteco.

Those sales were mainly recorded in the non-freehold/usufruct areas (those designated areas where only Qatar and GCC nationals can buy land), the expert said in its latest Q4 2012 report.

Broken down still further, in the fourth quarter, there was a 44 per cent increase in the total value and a two per cent increase in transaction volumes of villa transactions, compared to the previous quarter, indicating a higher average transaction value, according to Qatar’s Ministry of Justice.

The total value of transactions for apartment blocks in the non-freehold areas increased during the period compared to the previous quarter by 87 per cent, while the volumes of transactions went up by 42 per cent during the same period.

According to Asteco, the primary market prices, per square metre, in Porto Arabia-Pearl, Viva Bahriya-Pearl and Lagoon Plaza were QR13,500 ($3704), QR15,500 and QR 12,500 respectively.

“Values of apartments on the Pearl-Qatar (freehold area) have increased marginally, but significant capital growth may be restricted in 2013 due to increased supply. However if the planned shopping facilities open and the national infrastructure projects boost population growth, areas such as Pearl-Qatar could witness a slight increase in demand,” remarked Jed Wolfe, the managing director, Asteco Qatar.

According to him, the rents in Qatar were broadly stable in the fourth quarter compared to the Q3, although villas in some premium locations experienced small rental increases due to constrained supply of good quality stock.

“Rents for five-bedroom villas in West Bay Lagoon stood at QR27,500 per month, while rents for similar properties in Al Hilal, Ain Khaled and Al Gharrafa averaged around QR13,250 per month, he revealed.

Average leasing rates for a two-bedroom apartment varied from QR5,750 per month in Bin Omran and Al Maamoura up to QR10,000 per month in West Bay and QR13,000 per month in Pearl-Qatar, said Wolfe.

“There has been increased demand in the Pearl-Qatar, where one, two and four –bedroom apartments were the most sought after. However the increasing amount of supply coming to market will keep rates relatively unchanged and some landlords are foregoing increases at renewal to retain exiting tenants,” he added.

On the office market, Asteco said Qatar’s condition was static throughout 2012. “With an existing oversupply and more to come in 2013, prices will be under pressure as tenants search for value. The strongest demand was for fitted suites of less than 500 square metres in grade ‘A’ buildings,” the report added.


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