Is MotorCity in pole position?

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By Deepthi Nair, Property magazine  www.gulfnews.com

Those who had classified UpTown MotorCity as a sleepy, suburban residential enclave removed from the thick of the Downtown action are now retracting their words.

    *  Image Credit: Stefan Lindeque/ANM     * The Fox Hill terrace apartments are sought after and offer huge balconies; those with garden views command a premium.
* Image Credit: Stefan Lindeque/ANM * The Fox Hill terrace apartments are sought after and offer huge balconies; those with garden views command a premium.

With the community and its neighbouring projects gaining some self-sufficiency over the years, there are many takers, with both property purchasers and tenants showing interest in the project, built along the lines of UpTown Mirdif.

On a cursory drive through UpTown MotorCity, several phases such as Sherlock House, Shakespeare Circus, Marlowe House, Claverton House and Dicken’s Circus catch your attention.

Real-estate agents, however, insist that apart from the nomenclature, there isn’t much to differentiate between these buildings. “They may look different from the outside, but are quite similar in specifications. The variances are mostly restricted to the kitchen style [closed or open], location and so on,” explains Carina Lundmark, property consultant for Halcon Real Estate.

Nevertheless, the Fox Hill terrace apartments that are situated above the strip mall on the main road are sought after and, therefore, command a higher sales price and rent. Although the noise of races at the Dubai Autodrome over the weekends could be a drawback for families seeking some peace and quiet, it appeals to motorsports lovers.

“Fox Hill apartments are priced higher since they come with huge terraces; the terrace is almost the size of the apartment itself. However, since most balconies in MotorCity apartments are quite spacious, not all clients would be willing to pay extra for the additional outdoor space. In terms of the interior layout, most units are similar,” observes Carina. The New Bridge Hill apartments on the stretch of road leading from the Arabian Ranches to MotorCity also feature large terraces.

Current sales price and rentals

The unit types available in this community range from studios to three-bedroom apartments and come with equipped kitchens (white goods in place). As per data from Halcon Real Estate, the current sales price for a studio in UpTown MotorCity is Dh350,000, a one-bedroom apartment is Dh480,000 to Dh500,000, a two-bedroom apartment is Dh750,000 to Dh800,000 and a three-bedroom apartment is Dh1 million. Meanwhile, the current rents are Dh30,000 for a studio, Dh44,000 for a one-bedroom apartment, Dh65,000 for two bedrooms and Dh90,000 for a three-bedroom apartment. One would have to shell out approximately Dh10,000 extra per year to rent a Fox Hill apartment.

Tenants would typically have to pay around Dh2,000 to Dh3,000 extra for a unit in a better location and on a higher floor. Carina explains, “Tenants are sometimes very keen on a particular view or a floor. The rents vary depending on the view the apartment offers. For instance, the most sought-after apartment is one that offers a garden view, not blocked by another building or facing the road.” This applies to the Fox Hill units too, where apartments that overlook a garden are favoured over the autodrome-facing ones.

“For road-facing apartments, the only downside is having to contend with noise of the traffic as well as that of activities in the autodrome. The view is still open. Fox Hill apartments also benefit from their proximity to the retail strip. Besides, the ground floor is elevated in Fox Hill units,” says Carina, adding that these units typically command the lowest rents and sales prices.

According to Raplh Rau, a homeowner in MotorCity, “I live in Norton Court 3 where the autodrome noise is a non-issue. I moved in when the apartment was handed over in April 2009. I invested here because Union Properties had a good track record of delivering Green Community and UpTown Mirdif.”

Unlike, say, some buildings in the Dubai Marina, where residents’ ocean views have been blocked by the Jumeirah Beach Residence towers, MotorCity apartments generally offer open views, even if that’s of the boulevard or the small roundabouts in each cluster. One also does not have to contend with too many cars within this gated community. Another advantage of MotorCity units is the large basement storage space at hand. More info

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