Qatar – Country Review

The World Cup is always an international event that draws interest from every corner of the world.  With the 2022 World Cup right around the corner (2 years isn’t that far away), all eyes are focused on Qatar.  Qatar will be the first Arab country ever to host the World Cup, so the pressure is definitely on.

In preparation for the World Cup, Qatar’s infrastructure is undergoing a massive revamp.  The metro recently opened, connecting the public to the different brand-new developments across the country (i.e. Lusail and Msheireb).  Qatar has endless coastline, beautiful beaches, and offers fun and excitement for the whole family.  With all of this,  Qatar is becoming more and more intriguing for foreign investment and those looking for new career opportunities, but what is the real estate market really like? 

Qatar has implemented new laws that allow residents and expatriates to own property.  As mentioned, there are many brand-new developments popping up in Qatar, and prices in new developments are generally a bit cheaper in order to encourage higher occupancy.  The properties are of high quality and brand new and are quite enticing for foreign investors.  Qatar is a winter haven for those living in colder countries (temperatures in Qatar rarely drop below 18 degrees Celsius!) It’s expected to see more purchases of luxury apartments by Asian and Western investors looking for a winter getaway home.  

A lot of people who move to Doha work on short term contracts (1-2 years), so the country is definitely a renter’s market.  A large influx of people who move in and out of the country work in schools and in the past, real estate rental prices have fluctuated with according to school semesters.  For example, there is a high influx of people moving to Doha before the start of a new school semester (July – September) so real estate prices spike.  Keep this should be kept mind when browsing for potential homes! If possible, its highly recommended for those looking for new homes to work with larger and more reliable agencies/brokers in the country, such as Al Asmakh, Nelson Park, and United Development Company (UDC). 

Those staying in the country for a short period of time can look for properties that are furnished.  The rent may be a little higher, but it will be beneficial to you and will save you the extra cost/hassle of purchasing furniture. Additionally, employers in Qatar often offer housing or housing allowances as part of the employment contract, which is an added perk for expats living in Qatar. For rental properties, most agencies/landlords will ask you to provide upfront all 12 checks for a year’s rent (if the contract is for one year.  If the contract is for longer, you will be asked to provide them with checks for each month you will be living in the apartment.)  The agency/landlord will not deposit all checks right away,  but will hold on to these checks for the duration of the contract.  If you for some reason need to vacate the property prior to end of the contract, the agency/landlord will most likely keep the remaining checks.  Again, it is important to read each page of the contract, and ensure you are comfortable with the terms for the rental agreement

A new metro was recently completed in Qatar, and connected more remote areas to the country to the main areas of Doha, the capital city. 

Many of the country’s main real estate developments have been completed, so it’s an ideal time for interested investors or people moving to Doha to look for real estate opportunities as the country.  With all of its natural beauty, and with plans to be an international hub for sporting events, Qatar’s real estate market is only going to get hotter.

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