Off-plan vs Resale Properties in Dubai- What is better to buy?

  • 11th Apr 2023
  • Dubai

Are you considering investing in properties in the bustling city of Dubai but need help deciding whether to buy off-plan or resale? 

 Firstly, Dubai's real estate market is one of the most dynamic in the world, with new projects launching back to back. As a result, it can take some time to know which option is the best fit for you.


What is Off-Plan Property?

Off-plan property is an unconstructed property purchased directly from a developer. It's a property that is yet to be built or, in some cases, is in the early stages of being built.

To purchase this type of property, buyers rely on brochures and other marketing materials to learn about the project and the exact property they are buying. Purchase is usually made with a 10-20% down payment before completion and the rest after. The terms and amounts vary per project and developer in Dubai.

Investing in Dubai property is a big decision, and understanding each option's advantages and disadvantages is significant. Off-plan properties offer lower prices and customisation options, while resale properties offer immediate ownership and established communities. However, off-plan properties can come with the risk of delayed completion or potential bankruptcy. Resale properties may have limited customisation options and appreciate less than off-plan properties.

Here are the advantages and disadvantages of each to help you find the right choice.


Off-Plan Properties


  • Lower Price: Off-plan properties are cheaper than resale properties as developers launch at a low price and offer discounts and payment plans to attract buyers.
  • Potential for Capital Appreciation: Investing in off-plan properties can provide a higher potential for capital growth, as the property may increase in value before its completion, which means that investors can make a more significant profit before or after the handover.
  • Financial Stability and Firm Footing: Investing in Dubai is mainly motivated by the potential rental income it can generate, as the country continuously welcomes foreigners who need a place to call home. The Dubai Real Estate Market Report shows that return on investments (ROIs) has remained stable, which means that whether you choose to purchase real estate that is ready to be occupied or still under construction, it is highly likely that you will earn a decent rental income, which can provide financial stability and a firm footing in this vibrant city.
  • Various Off-Plan Projects in the Real Estate Market in Dubai: Dubai's off-plan market is growing and buzzing with ongoing transactions. With a wide range of prices, locations, and property types available, prospective buyers have a variety of new projects to choose from, whether they are interested in any project.



  • Delayed Completion: Off-plan properties may take longer than expected, frustrating end users who want to move into their new homes.
  • No Physical Structure: Off-plan properties may need a physical structure, making it difficult for buyers to visualise the layout. 
  • Risk: There is always a risk associated with buying off-plan properties. The developer may go bankrupt, or the project may be delayed indefinitely, leaving buyers with an incomplete property.
  • Wait Receive Rental Income: Another disadvantage of purchasing an off-plan property is that investors will have wait to receive rental income, unlike those who buy completed properties.

Resale Properties 


  • Immediate Ownership: With a resale property, buyers can move in as soon as possible, or an investor can put it up for rent once the transaction is completed. There's no waiting around for construction to finish.
  • Established Communities: Resale properties are often located in established communities, which means that buyers have access to amenities such as parks, schools, and shops.
  • Physical Structure: Resale properties have a physical structure, so the buyers can see what they're getting before they buy.
  • Availability of Mortgages: These properties are eligible for mortgages, which makes the process of paying for them more convenient.


  • Higher Prices: Resale properties are more expensive than off-plan properties as they have already been built and are ready to move in.
  • Limited Customisation: Buyers cannot customise the property as much as they can with off-plan properties. They may have to live with the existing finishes and layout.
  • Depreciation: Compared to off-plan properties, resale properties could appreciate less, indicating that buyers might be unable to resell the home for a profit. 


So, which one is better? 

It depends on your personal preferences and circumstances. If you're on a tight budget and willing to take a risk, off-plan properties may be the way to go. However, resale properties may be a better fit if you want to move in immediately and have a more established community, resale properties may be a better fit.

Ultimately, it's essential to research and weighs each option's pros and cons before deciding. Dubai is a fast-paced city with a constantly evolving real estate market, so staying informed and up-to-date is essential.

In conclusion, both off-plan and resale properties have their advantages and disadvantages. It comes down to personal preference and circumstances, whichever option you choose. 

For more information on the property market, give us a call today. You can also checkout our Off-plan projects as well as re-sale properties for sale & rent

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