Residential Real Estate Market in Qatar - Growth, Trends, and Forecast (2020 - 2025)

Residential Real Estate Market in Qatar - Growth, Trends, and Forecast (2020 - 2025)

  • December 2020 •
  • 119 pages •
  • Report ID: 6000945 •
  • Format: PDF
- Qatar is one of the most vibrant economies in the Middle East. The high GDP growth and influx of population, supported by employment opportunities and government policies, are some of the factors driving the growth of the residential real estate sector in the country. Qatar’s population was estimated to crossed 2.7 million by the end of 2019.
- The potential market for residential units has been further expanded by Law No. 16 of 2018, which was implemented in 2019. Earlier, non-Qatari investors had temporary holding rights; however, the law allows non-Qatari investors to purchase apartments in Lusail, West Bay, and Onaiza on a freehold title.
- Residential supply continues to increase throughout the market, with the completion of new apartment buildings and villa compounds. A relative slowdown in the new demand witnessed a continued decline in the residential rents in most areas.
- According to the latest data from the official source, the contribution of real estate activities to the country’s GDP during the first quarter of 2019 fell by 5.84% to QAR 9.68 billion, as compared to QAR 10.28 billion in the fourth quarter of 2018.
- The overall number of residential sales and the total value of transactions in Qatar in April and May (2019) decreased by 20% and 29%, respectively, as compared to the corresponding months in 2018, while the average price per transaction decreased by 10%. The pace of recovery is expected to improve in the medium term, amid the ongoing investments ahead of the World Cup 2022.
- The Qatar Tourism Authority significantly increased the number of visitors on a Y-o-Y basis, and rental levels are now at an affordable level. Rental trends in residential estate vary, based on the type of units. Apartment supply is likely to be dominated by small units (studios and one-bed units). In Doha, rents for villas have stabilized after declining during 2016-2018. There has been an increase in the occupancy rates for prime, well-located compounds, due to the demand for quality by tenants. The pipeline supply of compound villas is significantly lower than that of apartments, which may result in rental increases if the demand rises further.

Key Market Trends
Increasing Supply of Residential Units in Qatar

There has been rapid growth in the range of towers, malls, gated communities, and luxury villas in the market. In June 2019, towers 6 and 7 were opened in the Viva Bahriya district. Moreover, towers 13 and 14 (Viva Bahriya) and tower 21 (Porto Arabia) were expected to open in 2020.

Around 1,700 apartments and villas were added in Q2 2019, bringing the total stock to 294,700 units by the end of the quarter. The supply of apartments comprised 1,500 units from the delivered projects in The Pearl, Lusail, Fereej Bin Mahmoud, Old Ghanim, Fereej Abdul Aziz, Musheireb, and Al Dafna. In addition, the completion of villas and compounds in Al Kheesa, Al Wajba, Umm Salal Ali and The Pearl added 200 new properties to the existing stock.

In Abraj Quartier, five residential towers are about to complete delivering more than 2,000 units in total. The residents are also attracted to Lusail’s Marina District, as it plans to open the first tower, which may, in turn, favor the growth of the market in the coming years.

Residential Rents have Stabilized in Qatar

Since the rents stabilized in Qatar after 2015, there has been an increase in leasing activities. Villa compounds are witnessing strong occupancy rates in prime locations. Rental activities in The Pearl-Qatar and Lusail have increased, thus, leading to various developments in the area. The Pearl-Qatar area is expected to have a large supply of one-bedroom units, thus, widening the gap between one-bedroom and larger bedroom units.

A rent-free period of up to 3 months was common in Al Wakrah, Lusail, and Doha in the areas of Al Sadd, The Pearl, Mushiereb, New Doha, etc. The rental level in Lusail is expected to increase over the next 12 months, as more residents re-locate to the new city and additional amenities are being delivered.

Competitive Landscape
There is a huge competition between the residential real estate companies in Qatar. The market is dominated by a few players. The sales proportion of residential real estate properties through online channels has consistently grown, owing to the rising internet penetration, growing demand, increasing personal disposable incomes, surging middle-class youth population, and opportunities offered by government infrastructure investments.

Foreign investment in Qatar’s residential real estate market is estimated to increase in the coming years, as non-Qataris may invest in selected real estate projects, such as the West Bay Lagoon and The Pearl. Major real estate players in the market are Barwa Real Estate Company, Ezdan Holdings, United Development Company, and Mazaya Qatar.

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