As per several experts, retirement homes may be a market segment that propels the Dubai real estate market towards greater heights in the future. Real estate developers in the Emirate are now seriously considering luxuriously designed retirement housing units which could be introduced in the market from next year itself as per reports. Retirement housing may be given a shot in the arm via the recent retirement regulations which will enable expatriates above the age of 55 to stay in the UAE for 5 years. They only have to invest in a property worth Dh2 million or have savings of at least Dh1 million or income of Dh20, 000 each month.
Retirement homes or senior living units will majorly be positioned for those adults above 55 years of age and those who generally choose such properties are in good health and can easily lead independent lives. These projects mostly offer amenities such as health clubs/gyms, recreational amenities, club houses and facility management services. Real estate developers will definitely consider this segment with immediate potential of catering to more than 150, 000 residents who are 55 and above. Retirement age for expats in the UAE is usually between 60-65 years and senior living concepts will cater to them complete with tie-ups in case of facility management and healthcare partners.
Retirement homes are required to have nursing/medical facilities within the residential community itself and this will comfort seniors who do not wish to worry their children with their health issues. They will always want to stay with people of similar ages in a like-minded community. These bespoke living concepts fuse entertainment, health and medical care with residential facilities. Some retirees wish to enjoy amenities while some wish to enjoy serene villas located in the suburbs with ample space for housing family members when they visit. Land is limited in the city centre and hence most retirement home projects could be built along peripheral zones and suburban areas.
Real estate developers will have to come up with projects at both the low and high end for retirees although focus will mostly be on the high-end spectrum until there is more competition in this market segment. Prices could range above the Dh1200 per sq. ft. benchmark in case of such projects initially as per experts. Foreign investors may be encouraged and boosted by these retirement laws, particularly if they like the lifestyle, security and amenities in Dubai.
Such retirement facilities may be attractive propositions for people in this part of the world since nothing of this sort already exists. For those coming from colder climates, the weather remains decent for 8 months in a year. Also, a major chunk of people retiring in the UAE are professionals who have worked and lived in Dubai for several years and have their families/children working and living in the Emirate.