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The 5% Municipality Housing Fee

Authorities Set to Tighten Up on Collection of the Housing Fee

When relocating to Dubai one of the extra charges expatriates should always remember when budgeting is the five per cent Municipality Housing Fee. This is calculated at five percent of the tenant’s annual rent or five percent of the property’s freehold value (if you own a property) and is billed through the residents’ monthly DEWA (utility) bills.

This fee was actually introduced in 2005 but many people have never  been charged as the municipality had not, up to now managed to effectively target all areas however this is about to change with the municipality rolling out a city-wide campaign making sure they cover all areas by June 2012.

Residents who have escaped paying the charge up to now will fortunately not have the charges back dated  but they will now be sent reminders to fill in the forms. This can be done on-line and  will ensure expats are correctly billed ie 5% of their actual rent.  However if they don’t fill in the forms they will be charged 5% on the estimated rent or property value that has been set by the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) and this could be a lot higher.

Visit Arabian Business for further information.

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