Investing in real estate in Dubai: directly or through a Holding company

Mar 05, 2024

Real estate investment in Dubai stands as one of the most promising sectors, with transactions increasing by 22% in 2023 compared to 2022. According to statistics from the Dubai Land Department, real estate in Dubai offers an average annual return on investment of 5% to 8.4%, a competitive rate compared to other major global cities like London, New York, and Singapore.

Tax benefits for real estate investment in Dubai

The absence of taxes in Dubai is a significant attraction for real estate investors. The emirate's tax system caters to both affluent individuals and businesses seeking to maximize profits without the burden of high tax charges. There are no taxes on rental income, no property tax, no habitation tax, and no capital gains tax.

With no income tax, property tax, or capital gains tax, Dubai offers a unique opportunity for investors to grow their wealth with minimal tax.

Direct investment or via a Holding company

A common question is whether to invest directly in a property or to open a holding company to hold it. Generally, both options should be seen as a strategic choice. Investing through a holding company offers several advantages:

  • Ability to hold the property with multiple individuals
  • Opportunity to attract investors into your company's capital
  • Ease of transferring shares without being subject to co-ownership
  • Simple transfer of shares to your children in the event of succession
  • Diversification of investments with yields from your property
  • Benefit from UAE's taxation despite a change in personal tax residency
  • Restructuring of ownership chains with more ease

Taxation of rental income from properties held via a Holding

Properties leased out for rental income are taxed at a rate of 9%. In certain situations, these incomes may be exempted, particularly for companies located in free zones. Profits from the holding can be reinvested, or if you choose to distribute dividends, they can be tax-exempted on a personal level if you are a tax resident of the UAE.


Investing in Dubai real estate offers unique advantages, including attractive returns and favorable taxation. Whether you opt for direct investment or through a holding company, understanding the tax implications and structuring opportunities is essential for optimizing your investment. By working with experienced advisors, you can make the most of your Dubai real estate investment.

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