UAE Mortgage

Mortgage eligibility criteria in the UAE - DBR (Debt-burden ratio)/DTI (Debt-to-income ratio)


Tijana Kirkov


29 December 2022


You can get a mortgage for a property in the UAE if you meet certain eligibility criteria and requirements. Apart from employment, good credit history, minimum monthly income of minimum AED 15,000, age range between 21 and 70 years old, maximum/finance loan period of 25 years, and maximum LTV (loan-to-value) of 50-80%, there is also the DBR, debt-to-burden ratio, or internationally known as debt-to-income ratio (DTI) - an extremely important factor that banks consider while approving your home loan/mortgage.

What is the debt-burden ratio?

The debt-burden ratio measures the amount of monthly payments you make (including monthly debt payments and credit card installments) compared to your monthly income. Using this number, banks determine whether you are eligible for loans and credit cards based on your current liabilities and your ability to pay them back. Your debt-burden ratio is calculated by dividing the total debt by the total income. 

The UAE Central Bank requires that your DBR ratio doesn’t exceed 50% in order to qualify for a mortgage, meaning, you can't spend more than half of your income on debt repayment. For example, a debt-to-income ratio of 20 to 35 percent is generally considered to be acceptable for a home loan, whereas a debt-to-income ratio over 35 percent is considered risky by most home loan lenders.

It is important to note the Debt-Service Coverage Ratio (DSCR), which is the measurement of a property’s cash flow vs. its debt obligations, is not used in the UAE. 

In what ways can you improve your debt-burden ratio? For a better debt-burden ratio, we suggest you do the following:
  • Keep up with your monthly interest payments, and try to gradually reduce your loan balance.
  • Try consolidating your debt by transferring some low-interest loans.
  • You should try to increase your monthly income.
  • Make sure any loans are paid off as quickly as possible.

How we can help

With a better understanding of debt-burden ratios, you can be better prepared for mortgage applications. If you are considering getting a mortgage, you must provide the bank with a set of documents such as a salary certificate, bank statements, etc. To find out what other documents you need, read our blog on mortgage documents in the UAE. Check out our blog section for other blogs and information on real estate and mortgages in the UAE. 

You can save time, money and hassle by having us find a property, guide you, and speed up your mortgage application process. The team has extensive experience finding mortgage solutions for UAE nationals, expats, and non-residents alike. Contact us today to get professional advice and personalized mortgage offers, as well as online pre-approval letters. Using our mortgage calculator, you can also estimate your mortgage costs based on the apartment features you select. Browse our portal for over 5000 ready-to-move-in and off-plan properties and choose the one that suits you best.
Photo credits:
  1. Christoph Schulz | Unsplash


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