Quarterly Report Qatar Q4 2021: Residential Market Overview
Residential supply has increased by 5.2% per annum in Qatar since 2015
Official statistics published by the Planning and Statistics Authority in Q4 show residential property supply in Qatar reflected a compound annual growth rate of 5.2% between 2015 and 2020.
By the end of 2021, Cushman and Wakefield estimates that the number of apartments in Qatar had increased to 230,000, while the number of villas reached approximately 130,000.
We expect the supply of housing in Qatar to accelerate this year with the completion of major projects ahead of the FIFA World Cup in November. A number of new developments will be reserved by the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (The SC) ahead of the World Cup and held on Eskan leases for up to 5 years to avoid a sharp increase in available supply in January 2023.
The SC requirement for 60,000 rooms in villas and apartments to house supporters, together with other demands on housing related to the World Cup, has resulted in a temporary transformation of supply and demand dynamics, impacting residential rents in Q4.
The relative shortage in accommodation has resulted in inflationary pressures that has seen many landlords seek rental increases of between 4% and 8% on lease renewals in Q4. Cushman and Wakefield expect rental increases to be temporary, with rents falling again in 2023 once the temporary spike in demand subsides, and new buildings that have been reserved for the FIFA World Cup are absorbed back into the market.
The number of residential sales transactions in October and November reduced by 13% y/y, however sales rates throughout the year have been strong. The overall annual figures for 2021 reflect an 8% increase on 2020.
The y/y downturn towards the end of the year is likely to be a reflection on the demand surge for real estate in Q4 2020 following the introduction of Law No. 16 of 2018 to expand freehold zones – which came into force in 2020. The increase in residential sales in 2020 and 2021 was driven by the delivery of affordable freehold property in Lusail (for non-Qatari purchasers) and the associated granting of residency permits to purchasers whose property value is greater than QAR 730,000.