Doha / Emirates Business
There was a lull in the otherwise buoyant real estate market in January as owners held on to their properties due to weak demand and reduced prices, says a real estate market expert.
“So potential buyers weren’t willing to offer the old, higher rates, and that was why the value of property deals in January was relatively low,” said Ahmed Al Oruqi.
Real estate transactions totaled QR2.7bn ($741.4m) in January, down from QR3.6bn (approx $1bn) in December 2015. The number of deals totaled 255 in January this year as against 331 in December 2015.
According to Al Oruqi, who is general manager of Roots Real Estate Company, the market was dull in January because of low demand as owners were sticking to the old prices which were high.
However, according to another real estate market expert, recent announcement by the country’s Minister of Energy and Industry that crude prices were expected to improve to $50 a barrel by next year would likely bolster the demand for real estate.
Khalifa Al Muslemani told on Monday that he expected property deals to improve, both in value and number, by the middle of this month due to the above announcement.
The expectations about improved oil prices next year would certainly push up the sale as the demand for real estate would rise,” he said. “I am quite hopeful.”
But Oruqi said that he didn’t think oil prices have any impact on Qatar’s real estate market because infrastructure development projects were on in full swing.
“The development projects are still going on, so the question of low oil prices affecting the property market here does not arise,” he said in remarks to the media.
Asked about speculators who were active on the market earlier, Al Oruqi said they weren’t to be seen anywhere now.
Meanwhile, in December 2015 and January 2016, Al Rayyan, Doha’s sprawling satellite city, topped in terms of the number of deals
The city accounted for 30 percent of the total number of transactions in January, while Doha had a share of 29 percent.
But the value of transactions in Doha was more than double that of Al Rayyan. It was QR1.64bn versus QR718mn in Al Rayyan.
The highest price for a single piece of real estate was offered for a property in the posh Al Dfana locality of Doha at QR360m in January.
And, again, interesting as it may seem, for the first time Al Shehaniya was included as the eighth municipality in the figures announced by the Real Estate Registry of the Ministry of Justice for the month of January 2016.
However, just one real estate transaction took place in the new municipal area in January and its value was QR2mn.