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The Emirates NBD Dubai Real Estate Tracker (DRET) survey showed sales prices declining again in the three months to December, but the pace of price decline has slowed. The volume of sales transactions also declined in Q4, but the index improved from the October survey.

New buyer enquiries declined sharply in the three months to December, compared with October, and agents surveyed expect prices to ease further in the coming year.

The DRET also indicated softening in the residential lettings market with agents reporting slightly lower volumes, although the survey showed apartment rents still increased modestly in December.

Residential real estate prices and sales volumes

Both apartment and villa prices declined in Q4 2015, according to estate agents surveyed. However, the average price decline was not as sharp as in the October survey, with nearly 21% of agents reporting higher prices in the three months to December, compared with 15% in October. On average, the number of sales transactions declined in December 2015, but not by as much as in October, according to estate agents

The DRET survey results are broadly consistent with market price data for December, which show further declines in residential real estate sales prices in Q4 2015. Phidar Advisory’s 9/5 House Price Index shows apartment prices down -3.0% q/q in Q4 2015 while villa prices declined -7.9% q/q. Monthly sales price data also suggests that the rate of price declines has slowed in recent months.

The number of new buyer enquiries declined relatively sharply in the December DRET survey, with just 20.4% of agents reporting a higher number of enquiries over the previous three months, down from 45.1% in October.

Source: Dubai Real Estate Tracker: December 2015

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