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Furnished vs Unfurnished Properties

Furnished vs. Unfurnished Properties: A Comprehensive Guide to Buying in Dubai

Posted by Content Writer on July 10, 2023

Furnished vs. Unfurnished Properties: What to Buy in Dubai?

You might be thinking, “Should I buy furnished or unfurnished property in Dubai?” If that’s the question on your mind, rest assured, you’ve come to the right place for guidance.  When weighing the options between furnished vs. unfurnished properties, it’s crucial to consider your budget and the timeline you have to move into the space.

Furnished properties come at a higher cost, but they are ready-to-move-in without the need for additional time or resources spent on setup and professional services. On the other hand, unfurnished units offer the advantage of personalizing the interior design to suit your tastes, which can be appealing to potential tenants if you want to rent your property in the future. However, purchasing an unfurnished property comes with its own set of challenges that may delay its readiness for immediate rental.

To assist you in making an informed decision, we’ve compiled a comprehensive guide detailing the advantages and disadvantages of buying or leasing a furnished versus an unfurnished property in the UAE.

Buying Furnished or Unfurnished Properties in Dubai: A Comprehensive Guide

Navigate the Dubai real estate market with confidence as we delve into the pros, cons, and key considerations of investing in furnished versus unfurnished properties. Followed by interesting case studies from buyers, and tips from property experts.

Pros and Cons of Furnished Properties

Pros and Cons of Furnished Properties

Here are the key advantages and disadvantages to consider when deciding on furnished properties: the convenience and potential for higher rental income, balanced against the limitations on personalization and the higher initial and maintenance costs.


  1. Convenience and Time-Saving: Furnished properties are a turnkey solution for tenants. They come fully equipped with furniture, appliances, and other household items, saving you the time and hassle of purchasing and moving these items themselves. This convenience can be particularly beneficial to you if you are relocating to Dubai from another city or country.
  1. Attracting Short-Term Tenants: Furnished properties are highly appealing to short-term tenants such as tourists, business travelers, or those on temporary assignments. These individuals often prefer the ease of moving into a fully furnished space, making your property a more attractive option.
  1. Higher Rental Income Potential: Due to the added value of included furnishings, furnished properties often command higher rental prices compared to their unfurnished counterparts. This can lead to increased income potential for you as a property owner if you buy a furnished property.


  1. Limited Personalization Options: One downside of furnished properties is that they offer limited opportunities for personalization. You may feel restricted in making your space your own, as the existing furniture and decor are already in place. Your tenants may also feel restricted in terms of moving the furniture as they desire and creating the feeling of home for themselves.
  1. Higher Initial Investment: Furnishing a property requires a significant upfront investment. Property owners need to purchase furniture, appliances, and other items to fully equip the space, which can add to the initial cost of the property.
  1. Maintenance and Replacement Costs: Furnished properties come with additional responsibilities for property owners. Furniture and appliances will require regular maintenance and may need to be replaced over time due to wear and tear. These ongoing costs can add to the overall expense of owning a furnished property.

However, you only need to worry about this if your intention is to rent out your property as a property owner. As a property owner, you will in any case have to care for your furniture and appliances if you opt to live in the furnished property you buy.

Pros and Cons of Unfurnished Properties 

When considering the purchase of an unfurnished property, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons. This decision can significantly impact your experience as a property owner, from the type of tenants you attract to the overall costs you’ll need to manage.


  1. Personalization and Customization: One of the main advantages of buying an unfurnished property is the freedom it gives you to personalize and customize the space according to your taste or give your tenants the freedom to furnish the house as per their preferences. This can be particularly appealing to long-term tenants who want to make the space feel like their own. They can choose furniture and decor that suits their style, making the property feel more like a home rather than a temporary living space.
  1. Lower Initial Investment: Unfurnished properties typically have a lower purchase price compared to furnished properties. This is because you’re not paying for any furniture or appliances that come with a furnished property. This can make an unfurnished property a more affordable option for those on a tight budget or those looking to invest in multiple properties.
  1. Long-Term Tenant Stability: Unfurnished properties often attract tenants looking for a long-term lease. These tenants are typically willing to invest in their own furniture and appliances, which suggests they plan to stay for a significant period. This can lead to more stable rental income and fewer periods where the property is vacant.


  1. Higher Tenant Turnover: While unfurnished properties can attract long-term tenants, they can also experience higher tenant turnover. This is because they may not appeal to tenants looking for short-term leases or those who don’t want the hassle of buying and moving furniture. Each time a tenant moves out, you’ll need to find a new one, which can be time-consuming and costly.
  1. Additional Costs for Furniture and Appliances: While the initial investment may be lower, tenants will need to budget for the cost of furnishing the property. This includes everything from furniture to appliances and decor. These costs can add up quickly, especially if the tenant wants to fill the space quickly. As a property owner, you may also need to consider these costs if you decide to furnish the property to attract a wider range of potential tenants.
  1. Potential Difficulty in Attracting Short-Term Tenants: Unfurnished properties are less appealing to short-term tenants, such as those looking for holiday rentals or temporary work accommodations. These tenants typically prefer furnished properties, as they won’t have to worry about buying or moving furniture for a short stay. If your property is in an area popular with short-term renters, this could limit your potential tenant pool.

In conclusion, buying an unfurnished property comes with both advantages and disadvantages. It’s important to consider your financial situation, your target tenant market, and your willingness to deal with potential tenant turnover when making your decision.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between Furnished and Unfurnished Properties in Dubai

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between Furnished and Unfurnished Properties in Dubai

When deciding between purchasing a furnished or unfurnished property in Dubai, there are several factors to consider. These considerations will help you make an informed decision that aligns with your investment goals, budget, and lifestyle.

1. Rental Market Demand and Trends

Understanding the current market demand and trends in Dubai is crucial. If there’s a high demand for furnished properties and a trend towards short-term rentals, investing in a furnished property might be more profitable. However, if the market is leaning towards long-term rentals, an unfurnished property could be a better choice. Regularly researching and staying updated on the real estate market in Dubai can help guide your decision.

2. Target Tenant Profile

Consider the type of tenant you want to attract. If you’re targeting tourists, business travelers, or expats on short-term contracts, a furnished property might be more appealing as it offers convenience and immediacy. On the other hand, if you’re targeting families or long-term residents, they may prefer an unfurnished property that they can personalize to their taste.

3. Investment Goals and Strategy

Your decision should align with your overall investment goals and strategy. If you’re looking for a quick return on investment and high rental yields, a furnished property might be the way to go, especially if it’s located in a tourist hotspot. However, if you’re looking for long-term stability with consistent rental income, an unfurnished property might be more suitable.

4. Budget and Financial Considerations

Your budget plays a significant role in this decision. Furnished properties are generally more expensive due to the added value of the furniture and appliances included. However, they may also command higher rental rates. Unfurnished properties, while cheaper upfront, may require additional investment if you decide to furnish them later. Also, consider the potential costs of maintaining or replacing furniture in a furnished property.

5. Personal Preferences and Lifestyle

If you plan to live in the property yourself at some point, your personal preferences and lifestyle will play a part in your decision. If you prefer to design your own living space and have specific furniture preferences, an unfurnished property would be a better fit. However, if you value convenience and want to avoid the hassle of buying and moving furniture, a furnished property would be more suitable.

In conclusion, the choice between buying a furnished or unfurnished property in Dubai depends on a combination of market trends, your target tenant profile, your investment goals, your budget, and your personal preferences. It’s important to weigh all these factors carefully to make the best decision for your specific situation.

Case Studies: Success Stories and Lessons Learned

Case Studies - Success Stories and Lessons Learned

Analyzing real-life examples can provide valuable insights and lessons for potential investors. Here are a couple of case studies of investors who have chosen either furnished or unfurnished properties and achieved their goals.

Case Study 1: Furnished Property Success Story

John, a British expat living in Dubai, decided to invest in a furnished one-bedroom apartment in the Marina district. His target tenants were short-term renters such as tourists and business travelers. He chose a furnished property because he knew that convenience was a key factor for his target market.

John’s investment paid off. The apartment’s prime location, combined with its modern furnishings, made it a popular choice for short-term renters. The property was rarely vacant, and the rental income was higher than the average for an unfurnished property in the same area. John was able to recoup his initial investment within a few years and continues to earn a steady income from the property.

Lessons Learned

Understanding your target market and their needs is crucial. For short-term renters, convenience is key, and a furnished property in a prime location can command higher rental rates.

Case Study 2: Unfurnished Property Success Story

Sarah, a local Emirati, decided to invest in an unfurnished three-bedroom villa in a family-friendly community in Dubai. Her target tenants were families looking for long-term rentals. She chose an unfurnished property because she knew that families would prefer to furnish the home to their taste.

Sarah’s investment strategy was successful. She attracted a family who signed a long-term lease and brought their own furniture. The tenants took good care of the property because they treated it as their own home. Sarah enjoyed a stable rental income and didn’t have to worry about the wear and tear or replacement of furniture.

Lessons Learned

For long-term rentals, an unfurnished property can attract tenants who treat the property as their own home. This can lead to a stable rental income and fewer maintenance issues.

In conclusion, both furnished and unfurnished properties can be successful investments, depending on your target market and investment goals. It’s important to understand the needs and preferences of your potential tenants and to choose a property that aligns with your investment strategy.

Expert Tips for Making the Right Decision

Expert Tips for Making the Right Decision

Making the right decision when choosing between furnished and unfurnished properties can be a complex process. Here are some expert tips to guide you:

1. Conducting Market Research and Analysis

Understanding the real estate market is crucial. This includes studying current trends, rental rates for furnished and unfurnished properties, and the demand for each type of property. Look at the demographic data of the area where the property is located. Are there more families, young professionals, or tourists? This information can help you predict the type of tenants you’re likely to attract and the kind of property they would prefer.

2. Consulting with Real Estate Professionals

A trusted real estate brokerage company in Dubai would have a wealth of knowledge and experience. They can provide valuable insights into the local market, help you understand the legal aspects of property ownership in Dubai, and guide you in negotiating the best deal. They can also help you manage your property and find tenants once you’ve made your purchase.

3. Evaluating Return on Investment (ROI)

Consider the potential return on investment for both furnished and unfurnished properties. Furnished properties can often command higher rental rates, but they also require a higher initial investment. Unfurnished properties may have lower rental rates, but they also cost less upfront and may attract long-term tenants, leading to stable rental income. Calculate the potential ROI for each option to help guide your decision.

4. Considering Future Resale Value

Think about the potential resale value of the property. Factors that can affect resale value include the location of the property, the condition of the building, and market trends. Furnished properties can sometimes have a higher resale value because of the added value of the furniture and appliances. However, the furniture may also become outdated or worn over time, which could negatively impact the resale value. Unfurnished properties give the new owner the freedom to personalize the space, which could be a selling point.

In conclusion, making the right decision when choosing between furnished and unfurnished properties requires careful consideration and research. By understanding the market, consulting with professionals, evaluating potential ROI, and considering future resale value, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your investment goals and financial situation.

Conclusion: Making the Best Choice for Your Property Investment in Dubai

Choosing between furnished and unfurnished properties in Dubai is a significant decision that can impact your investment returns, tenant pool, and overall experience as a property owner. Here’s a recap of the key points discussed:

  1. Understanding the Pros and Cons: Unfurnished properties offer personalization and customization, lower initial investment, and long-term tenant stability. However, they can also lead to higher tenant turnover, additional costs for furniture and appliances, and potential difficulty in attracting short-term tenants. Furnished properties, on the other hand, can attract a different tenant demographic and potentially yield higher rents, but they require a higher initial investment and ongoing maintenance of the furnishings.
  1. Considering Various Factors: When choosing between furnished and unfurnished properties, consider the rental market demand and trends, your target tenant profile, your investment goals and strategy, your budget and financial considerations, and your personal preferences and lifestyle.
  1. Learning from Case Studies: Real-life examples of investors who have chosen either furnished or unfurnished properties can provide valuable insights and lessons. Success can be found in both types of investments when aligned with the investor’s goals and the market demand.
  1. Leveraging Expert Tips: Conduct thorough market research and analysis, consult with real estate professionals, evaluate the potential return on investment, and consider the future resale value of the property.

As for final thoughts and recommendations, it’s important to remember that there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. The choice between a furnished and unfurnished property depends on your individual circumstances, goals, and the specific dynamics of the Dubai property market at the time of your investment.

If you’re targeting short-term renters or looking for a higher rental yield and have the budget for a higher initial investment, a furnished property might be the right choice.

On the other hand, if you’re targeting long-term tenants, looking for stable rental income, and prefer a lower initial investment, an unfurnished property could be a better fit.

In any case, due diligence is key. Take the time to research the market, consult with professionals like us, and carefully consider your options before making a decision.

Investing in real estate is a significant financial decision, and the more informed you are, the better your chances of making a successful investment.

Why Should You Invest in Dubai Real Estate With Footprint Real Estate?

Footprint Real Estate is a trusted and experienced real estate company with three decades of proven track record of success. With Footprint Real Estate, you get a wide range of properties to choose from, including residential, commercial, and land.

Footprint Real Estate offers competitive prices and excellent customer service. With a team of experienced and qualified agents you can find the perfect property suitable for needs and your budget.

Footprint Real Estate is a licensed and regulated real estate company, so you can be sure that your investment is safe.

Here are some of other benefits of investing in real estate in Dubai with Foot Print Real Estate:

Brokerage and investment advisory: Footprint Real Estate can help you find the perfect property for your investment needs and provide you with investment advice.

Commercial property consultancy: Footprint Real Estate can help you find and purchase commercial properties, such as office buildings, retail spaces, and warehouses.

Property Management: Footprint Real Estate can manage your real estate assets for you, including collecting rent, paying property taxes, and making repairs.

Real estate marketing: Footprint Real Estate can help you market your real estate property to potential buyers or tenants.

Finance and mortgage: Footprint Real Estate can help you obtain financing for your real estate investment, including mortgages and loans.

Land sourcing: Footprint Real Estate can help you source land for development or investment.

Legal Advisory: Footprint Real Estate can provide you with legal advice on real estate matters, such as contracts, leases, and title searches.

If you are interested in investing in real estate in Dubai, email us on [email protected] or whatsapp us on +971 50 901 1699 to get in touch with one of our property agents.

Similarly, If you are unsure about off-plan vs. ready properties, or want to read up on Palm Jebel Ali, or want to know how to minimize real estate investment risks, visit our blog to learn more.


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