Why and how to invest in real estate in Qatar – A Complete Guide

April 4, 2023 8:34 am

Qatar is one of the wealthiest countries in the world, offering a unique blend of tradition and modernity. Despite being a small country, Qatar has always been at the forefront of guiding the Arab culture into the future. The Emirate has always shown its potential by adopting state-of-the-art technology or participating in global events.

Today, Qatar is a booming economy making efforts to diversify its reliance on the energy industry. The key driver of these efforts is Qatar’s real estate, which has been a critical contributor to its economic growth in recent years. The sprawling infrastructure has won Qatar its FIFA World Cup 2022 hosting rights. According to the Planning and Statistics Authority (PSA), between 2013 and 2017, the registered combined compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of non-mining and quarrying sectors was 6.8%. This growth was primarily attributed to four sectors: real estate, construction, health care, and insurance. Real estate alone had a CAGR of around 7.6%.

As the CEO of one of Qatar’s fastest-growing luxury real estate companies, I closely watch the market. Over the years, I have consulted hundreds of foreign clients on investing in the country’s real estate. If you plan to invest in real estate in Qatar, this guide will help you understand the market challenges, identify opportunities, and make profitable investments.

 

What to consider before investing in real estate in Qatar?

 FG Realty is a Qatar real estate company focusing on profitable ventures and consulting capital investments in luxurious properties. Over the years, we have expanded our network, focusing on investors worldwide. People new to Qatar want to know how to invest in real estate. Fortunately, the oil-rich country offers several investment opportunities for ex-pats.

While the lucrative investment opportunities will drive your decision, you must gather critical insights and data before investing. While it is true that there was a boom in the real estate sector, but COVID-19 pandemic impacted the property market, causing a decline in property prices and rents. However, soon after the FIFA World Cup, the real estate sector experienced steady growth, supported mainly by large infrastructure projects such as the Lusail City and The Pearl.

 

The current trends in the local real estate market

Despite these challenges, Qatar’s real estate market remains attractive to investors worldwide due to the country’s stable political and economic environment. Furthermore, the government’s commitment to transforming the country’s infrastructure is diversifying the economy and getting significant investments in real estate in Qatar.

Qatar National Vision 2030, or QNV 2030, is a development plan by the General Secretariat for Development Planning. According to the government manifesto, the aim of QNV 2030 is to “transform Qatar into an advanced society capable of achieving sustainable development” by 2030. These development goals are divided into four central pillars: economic, social, human, and environmental.

As part of the commitment to sustainable development, there has been a growing interest in eco-friendly real estate projects. Developers increasingly incorporate green features into their projects, paving the way for a more sustainable future. If you are exploring the best areas to invest in real estate, projects focusing on sustainability must be your choice. The smart city of Lusail is one such venue of investment. Another trend is the rise of smart homes that are equipped with modern technology for enhanced comfort, security, and energy efficiency. These innovations drive investments in Qatar’s residential real estate market, where the CAGR is anticipated to grow by more than 11.5%.

Overall, Qatar’s local real estate market will likely continue growing and stay current with the latest development trends in the sector.

 

How can non-Qataris (foreigners) invest in real estate in Qatar?

In October 2020, Qatar made a legislative change in its growing effort to make its real estate market more attractive to expatriate residents, foreign investors, and global real estate funds.

Under the new rule, ex-pats and foreign investors can buy or lease property in more regions on a freehold basis. Previously, non-Qatari people could explore investment property in Qatar in only three areas – The Pearl Qatar, the West Bay Lagoon in Doha, and the Al Sultan Beach Resort in Al Khor. However, under the changed rule, the Cabinet approved Law No. 16 of 2018, permitting the use and ownership of a real estate by non-Qataris in 9 regions. The number of areas where they can lease properties is up from 3 to 15 municipalities.

 

The areas where ex-pats are allowed freehold ownership are:

Al Dafna (administrative area 61)

Al Khor Resort (74)

Al Khraij (69)

Al Qassar (administrative area 60)

Al Wasail (69)

Jabal Theyleeb (69)

Onaiza (administrative area 63)

Rawdat Al Jahaniyah (investment area)

The Pearl-Qatar (66)

West Bay Lagoon (Area 66)

The areas where non-Qataris are now allowed to lease real estate for 99 years are:

Doha International Airport area (48)

Msheireb (Area 13)

Fereej Abdelaziz (14)

Doha Al Jadeed (15)

New Al Ghanim (16)

Al Refaa and Old Al Hitmi (17)

Aslata (18)

Fereej Bin Mahmoud (22)

Fereej Bin Mahmoud (23)

Rawdat Al Khail (24)

Mansoura and Fereej Bin Dirham (25)

Najma (26)

Umm Ghuwailina (27)

Al Khulaifat (28)

Al Sadd (38)

Al Mirqab Al Jadeed and Fereej Al Nasr (39)

 

The new real estate ownership and property law applies to all land sales, buildings, residential flats, and commercial property. One of the most significant amendments is that foreigners can pass on and inherit properties under the new legislation.

As it is evident that there are so many opportunities for foreign investors in the real estate business in Qatar, it is anticipated that residential property sales are likely to see a boost with these changes. Furthermore, the Qatari government also offers a two-tiered residency program to reward large investors with government-provided services only available to Qatari citizens.

 

Residency programs associated with property ownership 

Qatar is offering a two-tiered residency program under the new resolution to enable more prominent investors to obtain residency through investment in Qatar.

Foreigners buying or leasing a property in Qatar with a market value of at least 730,000 Qatari rials (about US$200,000) will be eligible for residency permits for themselves and their families. An investment of at least 3.65 million rials (about US$1 million) will get investors permanent residency with additional benefits of government-provided free services such as free education and healthcare for themselves and their families.

However, the two-tier residency program makes it mandatory for foreigners who rent or buy real estate in Qatar to stay in the country 90 days per year to avail of residency status. To better assist ex-pat residents, foreign investors, and real estate funds, the government has set up the Office for Non-Qatari Real Estate Ownership.

 

Best communities for investment property in Qatar 

Now that you know how to invest in real estate in the country, you must know the best areas to invest in. While the new legislation opens several regions in Qatar for real estate investments, these areas are particularly high-value.

 

Lusail 

The smart city with a futuristic vision is simply redefining urban living standards by offering amenities that are one of a kind. Technology is embedded in its core, facilitating various digital services ranging from education and transportation to waste management and energy distribution. We already have the most valuable luxurious properties for sale in Lusail, handpicked by our agents.

 

The Pearl, Qatar

An artificial island, The Pearl is arguably the most ambitious real estate development in Qatar. Offering 10 Mediterranean-inspired precincts, it is built at the intersection of Qatar’s past and the future. Here are some of the best investment properties in The Pearl that offer the most iconic living standards.

 

West Bay 

Then there is the West bay, home to some of Doha’s most prominent real estate districts, such as the Al Dafna, West Bay Lagoon, Onaiza, and Al Qassar. The region has large-scale residential and commercial properties amidst an eclectic mix of restaurants, beautiful parks, and museums. Explore properties for sale in West Bay.

 

Conclusion 

Qatar’s real estate market, in general, is characterized by its growing economy that is attracting ex-pats resulting in an expanding population. The demand for residential and commercial properties is increasing, but due to oversupply, real estate prices remain low. This presents a unique opportunity for investment in the sector for high returns.

If you plan to capitalize on the opportunities presented by the reduced prices, FG Realty can consult you on how to invest in real estate in Qatar to maximize your profits.

 

Categorised in: Luxury Real Estate