Villa owners on Nakheel’s flagship Palm Jumeirah have been given the option to buy additional land outside their property as the developer looks to boost revenues.
Nakheel is charging AED600 (US$163) per sq ft for the strip of land adjacent to the steps that lead down to the beach.
Several residents with properties situated beside the public footpath to the beach – also known as a sikka – have also been offered the land to extend their garden for the same price, residents on the luxury development told Arabian Business.
“If you have a Garden Villa, you are almost doubling the size of your garden,” said Paul Christodoulou, a Palm Jumeirah villa owner and real estate broker at Dubai-based Luxhabitat.
Land prices on the Palm Jumeirah are estimated around AED2,000 per sq ft, he added.
The purchase offer comes several months after Nakheel, Dubai’s largest real estate developer, warned homeowners who had already extended their garden to include the plot of land using decking, to take it down, residents said.
“A lot of the villas on the Palm put out decking that went across the terracing that Nakheel provided… This year they started pushing [residents] to take it down. Then they said you could buy the area – provided you developed it in the way that Nakheel wanted you to – thereby extending the garden,” said one resident.
In a letter to owners, Nakheel said home owners that purchase the land are permitted to erect swimming pools, add soft and hard landscaping, water features and minor outdoor structures such as barbeques.
Nakheel did not respond to emails from Arabian Business.
Developers in the Gulf state are looking at new ways of generating income after the global credit crisis left many of them short of funding to complete projects across the emirate.
Nakheel was one of the hardest hit by the economic downturn, which saw property prices in Dubai decline by over 65 percent. The slump forced the firm to write down the value of its real estate by US$21bn and prompted a bailout.
The firm, which derived most of its income from selling off-plan property during the five-year real estate boom, is looking to boost income from rentals and shopping malls.
The Dubai-based company has launched several new projects in recent months including 102 townhouses on the Palm Jumeirah named the Palma Residence and Palm Views East and West, which will feature 192 pied-à-terre style studios priced at AED1m.
The firm last month said it swung into profit in the first quarter as it handed over more properties and cut costs. Profit for the first three to March 31 was AED362m (US$98.56m) up from a loss of AED36m in the year-earlier period.
By Claire Valdini Thursday, 7 June 2012
Source: Arabian Business