A number of The Square investors gathered to voice concerns over contract changes and delayed handovers
Real estate and development firm omniyat Properties has been accused of having “squeezed and taken advantage of” 50 investors, who own more than 40% of apartments forming Omniyat’s residential project, the square in Al Mamzar, Dubai. the square should have been handed over with keys before the remaining instalments divided over five years were to be paid, but Omniyat coercively took the cheques in advance by threatening the investors for cancelling their contract; thus breaching the payment terms as laid out in the contract, according to the investors, speaking at a press conference. “Omniyat is taking unfair advantage of the situation because we have paid them more than 50% despite Omniyat breaching the contract over and over again.
May it be the payment terms, the maintenance charges or hand over, everything is being manipulated every other day as an amendment or new contract proposals,” said one of the investors. In addition to imposition of new contracts and failure to handover the project to schedule, investors questioned handover charges incurred and “exorbitant” maintenance fees.
“The credit crunch does not mean that developers should take advantage and get greedy despite ample government support. Developers must support the investors and if not, at least abide by the contracts earlier made.” However, an Omniyat Properties spokesperson told the Big Project that handover of the square is well underway.
“More than 100 investors representing nearly 30% of owners in phase one have already taken possession and are occupying units in the first phase of the development. since the square’s launch, Omniyat has upgraded amenities and partnered with luxury hotelier Mövenpick, providing additional value and return on investment to investors.”
The company claimed that it was committed to engaging in a transparent and open dialogue with its investors and operated in full accordance with the real estate regulatory authority’s guildelines. The company said that it would meet and support its investors and address any concerns raised.
Meanwhile, investors said this was a small example of a wider issue concerning investors’ rights in the UAE: “We hope that this case study would guide the government officials to take necessary action and devise a strategy to secure the interests of investors and assure that due to these organisations like omniyat, Dubai’s reputation is not damaged.”