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Investor Centre

Investing in real estate is both exciting and challenging, and it’s certainly possible to make good financial returns in the process. However, many investors, both big companies and private buyers, make mistakes that hinder the achievement of their goals.

Here are our top five tips from our years of experience to make sure you get real value from your investment.

1. Identify specific goals

Before buying an investment property, you need to focus on your personal investment strategy. Start by asking yourself why you are investing and what goals you want to achieve. Do you want to buy a distressed asset to renovate and sell for a quick profit? Do you want to hold on onto it for the long-term? Are you investing to build your future wealth or to improve your cash flow? Different answers need different strategies in order to manage your investment wisely.

2. Location, Location, Location

This is the number one rule in real estate investment. The phrase has been in use at least since 1926, according to The New York Times, and is just as relevant now as it was then. Our Mirage Property Research Map (LINK) is an ideal tool to provide the intelligence you need to find your ideal property. You can set the budget, identify the area and check the availability of services nearby. Identical houses can increase or decrease in value because of their location. Generally, the best locations are in the prime spots but this can change over time. For example refurbishment programmes, new developments or the siting of better amenities can materially affect the popularity of the district. Local intelligence is essential to discover any issues which might affect the future desirability of the area.

How do you identify if the property you are looking for is in a prime spot?
The view is certainly an important feature. It will be easier to sell a house or an apartment if they provide a view of the cityscape, the ocean, a golf court or a lush garden area. However, services, schools and a safe neighbourhood are very attractive attributes and much sought after by some buyers and tenants. Good infrastructure and distance from workplaces, shopping and leisure areas, also have an influence. Families with children, for instance, are concerned about their children’s education and often they will pay more to buy or rent a home that is located in a highly desirable school district with after-school sport activities and where kids can play and feel safe.

3. A diverse portfolio

Diversification is a valuable route to investment success. This approach reduces short-term capital fluctuations. A well-diversified real estate portfolio increases the chance of a positive return on investment (ROI), as it is hard to predict the future yields of various asset categories and asset performance may fluctuate over time.

4. Due diligence

Before buying a property, we recommend you conduct – or ask a professional real estate consultant to prepare on behalf of you – a complete due diligence assessment of the property. This phase is an essential part of the sales and purchase process, necessary to investigate any negatives, defects or any sort of problem the property could have (legal, technical or administrative).

5. Use a reliable property management company

In general, property management companies offer the advantage of keeping your investment secure and profitable and managing the day-to-day tasks. While it is possible to manage your rental properties by yourself, hiring someone else to do it for you is something to consider, for a professional result. Management companies deal directly with enquiries and tenants, saving you time and worry about marketing your rentals, collecting rent, handling maintenance and repair issues, responding to tenants’ complaints and solving problems. Plus, a good real estate management company brings its knowledge
and experience to your property, giving you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your investment is in good hands.

Read more about our Property Management Services and call us: 00974 4444 4431

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Local Insights

How to choose the best areas to live in Doha

Whether you are moving to the city for the first time or relocating within Doha, it’s important to learn about the different areas the city offers before renting or buying.

Doha has 12 main districts, each one with unique features and services. Choosing a new neighbourhood is a big decision and it is important to be well informed prior to moving. Here is some information about the districts within Doha, what they include, and who might find them most appealing:

Musheireb (or Msheireb) is the old downtown quarter of Doha, where the Souq Waqif is located. It includes the first part of The Corniche and the museum area: the Museum of Islamic Art and the National Museum (under construction). It is close to the beautiful bay and waterside parks.

Al Muntazah is behind Musheireb, located in the heart of Doha. Many new buildings are being constructed in this area and the average price is quite affordable.

Al Sadd is both a commercial and residential area. This district is full of shops, restaurants and cafes, intermixed with apartment buildings and offices.

Bin Mahmoud is also centrally located and moderately cheap. While some of the older, more run-down buildings in this district can be a bit off-putting, it’s still a dynamic area to call home.

Najma/the Mall & Airport Area sees a population largely composed of single men. Many workers decide to live here because this district has easy access to the main roads and construction sites.

Old Ghanim/Umm Ghuwailina is another old part of town which is attractive if you are looking for affordable rentals.

Salwa Road and Abu Hamour is a popular area among families. Experiencing a great deal of expansion over the past few years, it has some of the largest schools in Doha and many new roads and buildings. It is a good area for families with sporting and recreational facilities, with easy access to the city centre.

The Villagio Area/Aspire Zone (Al Waab Str.) is one of the most high-end districts in town. Located near the well-known shopping mall, Villagio, Al Waab and Al Aziziyah is a favourite of expatriate families. You’ll need a car to get to the restaurant and stores if you reside here, but living in the area is worth the drive. In this area there are good schools covering all educational levels.

West Bay/Al Dafna is one of the most exclusive and exciting parts of the city. This district features large homes and beautiful landscaping. It also features shopping areas and options for dining out.

West Bay Lagoon is one of the finest districts in Doha, featuring many stand-alone and compound villas located alongside the sea and the Doha lagoon. This location is perfect for water sports and boating lovers since many properties feature a direct water access.

The Pearl is more than a district; it is one of the most innovative projects and urban developments in Qatar’s history. With its state-of-art residential towers, luxury villas, marina, 5* hotel, luxury shopping stores and leisure facilities, it’s a cosmopolitan and exciting area to live in.

Landmark (Duhail)/ Al Rayyan is located in the south-west area of Doha. Many families choose this area, because it has many stand-alone villas with backyards and is near both Education City and big malls like Landmark and Ezdan. Expats love living in this district.

Whether you’re looking to rent or buy, Mirage Property can help you find your new home, in your ideal district. It always helps to have the assistance of an experienced professional, when looking for your dream home. Let us know what you’re looking for and we can help you navigate the real estate opportunities in Doha. Like you, we want your district to be a place you love, that you’re happy to live in each and every day.

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Living well in The State of Qatar – helpful facts

Capital: Doha

  • Population: 2.6 million approximately
  • Area: 11,437 sq. km (4,416 sq. miles)
  • Official language: Arabic
  • Official religion: Islam
  • Currency: Qatari Riyal (1$ = 3.65 Riyal)

Doha (Ad Dawha) is the capital city of Qatar and means ’roundness’, according to the Centre for Geographic Information Systems.

Climate: Never tried summer in Doha? It is usually harsh with temperatures up to 50˚C. Most people like staying indoors but evenings are slightly cooler. Keep yourself constantly hydrated! Winter is much cooler and although the nights can get a little chilly, it is the perfect season to sit outdoors, enjoy camping, a BBQ at the beach or in the desert, or simply relaxing outdoors in one of the city’s many parks.

Health insurance:  Most expats have health insurance provided by their employer. If this is not the case, residents can apply for a Hamad Card, which entitles them to subsidised healthcare at the Hamad Medical Corporation.

Clothing guidelines: Qataris are proud of their clothing, and traditional clothes are worn with pride on a daily basis. Qatar is an Islamic country and people dress in a very traditional manner. Although there is no dress code as such, for foreigners, conservative clothing is recommended. This implies no shorts for men, and no mini-skirts or tank tops for women. Foreign visitors are expected to dress in a style that is sensitive to Islamic culture.

Language: Arabic is the national language of Qatar but because of the large expatriate population that resides here, English, Urdu, French, Malayalam and Tagalog are also used.

Fuel: Qatar is one of the largest gas producers in the world. Fuel prices are really affordable.

The weekend:  From Friday to Saturday. Most stores are usually closed on Friday morning until the Jum’ah afternoon prayer. 

Public transportation: This is available all over Doha in the form of taxicabs and buses operated by the Mowasalat transportation company. Other private services include the Doha Bus which is a hop-on-hop- off service taking people sightseeing around some of the interesting tourist landmarks in Qatar.

Making friends: If you are new to Doha, finding online communities is the best way to get involved in activities of interest to you. Apart from Facebook pages, other popular forums are QatarLiving or ILoveQatar.

The expat community in Qatar is big, friendly, and welcoming. A little searching for activities and new friends will usually be fruitful. There are many expat clubs and events, and even if expats don’t want to engage on this level, bumping into acquaintances while shopping or on the Corniche is likely. Once the ball gets rolling, making friends is easy.

Education: Qatar believes in the importance of education, science and technology and many world-class institutions have set up branches in Doha. The country also recruits teachers from overseas and the quality of education in private schools is high.

Holidays: December 18 is the Qatar National Day. Some of the other annual national holidays are Qatar National Sport Day celebrated on the second Tuesday of February. As it is primarily an Islamic country, Eid Al Fitr and Eid Al Adha are the festive occasions.

The Pearl Qatar: The Pearl is a luxury development built on an artificial island shaped like a string of pearls. It was built on top of an old pearl diving site and is a great place for people to dine, have a social life, enjoy shopping for luxury items and services or to enjoy a walk around the Marina. If you’re looking for a real estate option at The Pearl, Mirage Property has a branch in Medina Centrale (contact +974 4444 4431).

Souq Waqif:  This is one of Qatar’s most vibrant social hotspots. It is a traditional cultural bazaar, with a variety of shops selling traditional products and a range of restaurants serving a variety of cuisines (Mediterranean, Local, Asian, Seafood Indian, Italian etc.). It is also a popular place for visitors to smoke shisha, enjoy good food or just relax after a long week. In addition to these, Souq Waqif offers also an interesting veterinary surgery centre for falcons, the traditional birds of Qatar.

Museum of Islamic Art in Doha: The world-renowned architect I.M.Pei – the designer of the Louvre Pyramid in Paris – designed the Museum with its magnificent cubism architecture. Opened in 2008, it is a blend of both Islamic and modern architectural styles and one of the most famous cultural hotspots in town.

West Bay: This is Qatar’s commercial district and a significant portion of Qatar’s traffic goes around and through this area.  Many banks and companies are located here.

The Corniche:  One of the oldest landmarks in Qatar, it features a long walking path, approximately 5km long. People walk, exercise, enjoy family picnics or simply sit by the sea for some fresh sea breeze and a magnificent view of the glittering West Bay skyline.

Sports: Football/soccer is one of Qatar’s most popular sports. You can catch a game at most times during the year or visit the many stadiums, which are interesting to explore on their own as well.

Qatar will host the FIFA World Cup in 2022 for which it will build nine eco-friendly iconic stadia, some of which will be able to host up to 80,000 people.

However there are many other sports to enjoy in Doha, including sailing, windsurfing, fishing, personal fitness, tennis, horse riding, martial arts to name just a few.

Karak tea: This is one of the most popular beverages among local and expatriate residents alike in Qatar. A number of eateries serve this delicious, milky tea, which is infused with cardamom.

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Education in Doha

The Qatari National Vision places education at the heart of its national development strategy. The country has a population of 2,650,000 persons (February 2017). Ten per cent of the population are students, enrolled in more than 433 schools.

The educational system features nurseries and kindergartens for the care of children below four years of age. The Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs classifies nurseries based on the qualifications of its staff and the fees. Nurseries are expected to provide comprehensive care to children and ensure the appropriate conditions to develop their skills in all fields.

Primary and secondary education is gender-segregated and divided into primary, preparatory, secondary and specialised secondary categories. Primary education is mandatory for all Qatari children from age 6.

Most expatriate students in Qatar attend private schools. Generally fees increase with the level of education, particularly at the end of secondary school, and are usually payable in advance per semester. Fees vary from 22,000 QAR a year at primary school and from 35,000 QAR up to 55,000 QAR a year at secondary level.

Schools in Doha are mainly located in the area of Al Waab/ Salwa Road. Ask to one of our agents to introduce you to the selection of properties located in the Educational District in Doha.

To contact one of our experts to advise you, [Telephone and Email address to be inserted]

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