Manzili: Dubai’s own real estate investment calculator

Manzili is an Arabic word that roughly translates to English as ‘household’ – the institution that human existence has revolved around for millennia. Truly the place ‘where the heart is’, a home is central to human sustenance and prosperity. This is why, any initiative to make such a fundamental human need more accessible to the general population is both commendable and worthy of our attention.

Real estate is an inherently a capital-intensive sector. It includes properties of all sizes and types, making it complicated to identify the perfect choice, especially for buyers with financial constraints. Typically, a lot of thought goes into decision-making, before zeroing in on a property, especially since the ensuing transaction is usually one that involves high stakes and considerable capital. Such a complex purchase warrants a comprehensive tool to help match prospective buyers with suitable properties. Enter Manzili—an initiative launched by the Dubai Land Department (DLD), which aims to revolutionize the real estate sector in Dubai.

Through the Manzili initiative, DLD has made an online real estate investment calculator accessible to the general public(1). Traditionally, such calculators were offered by private entities like real estate marketplaces and personal finance service providers, rather than regulatory bodies. By enabling prospective buyers to make informed decisions on the basis of their disposable income, available budget and anticipated savings, DLD expects Manzili to boost buyer confidence, encourage sales and invigorate the market.


It is no secret that Dubai is a sought-after destination for real estate investments. Thanks to the DLD’s relentless pursuit of excellence in the sector, Dubai is currently the byword for high quality property offerings. However, any true commitment to excellence requires continued and proactive evolution, and this is what Manzili represents. According to Prabhakar Rao, Managing Director of Gemini Property Developers, Manzili will empower buyers and foster transparency. A tool to aid potential buyers in making feasible real estate investments is desirable in any market, but one with the added credibility of being offered by a government body, is an indispensable resource, says Prabhakar Rao.

The primary objective of Manzili is to help buyers make informed decisions(2). Essentially, through the means of this tool, DLD will present buyers with the best available property options for their budget. Manzili is designed to cater to everyone, regardless of their financial specifics. On the one hand investors looking for returns can get a firm grasp on their asset portfolio, and on the other, owner-buyers can get the best property for their money’s worth. DLD has a designated team of professionals, with rich experience and expertise, who are working to make Manzili as user-friendly and valuable as it can be. The initiative has paved the way for strategic public-private partnership (PPP) models involving the DLD and private developers, to create synergies and unleash the ‘animal spirits’ of the market.

Working Mechanism

The Dubai Land Department has entered into strategic partnerships with real estate developers both before and after Manzili was launched online(3). At the time of writing this post, the official site listed 38 projects that feature such alliances. The Manzili calculator allows buyer to investigate properties that are suitable for them, within these projects. The mechanism for such searches is rather self-explanatory: enter name and contact details, then enter the current savings available for down payment and monthly savings to ascertain affordable monthly installments, in appropriate sections of the interface. Having provided these details, the Manzili calculator then returns results showing qualified projects and properties. Service charge waivers and financial assistance is also on offer, in compliance with the legislative and RERA framework.

The results can be further refined based on location, property type and project status, wherein newly launched, under construction and ready-to-move projects are all listed. The site permits sorting the listings based on popularity and handover time, in case of off-plan properties, as well. According to Prabhakar Rao, the easy-to-use, readily available and all-inclusive Manzili calculator is yet another breakthrough in Dubai’s real estate revolution. The Managing Director of Gemini Property Developers lauds DLD’s persistent efforts to infuse dynamism in the Dubai real estate market, in the face of global economic slowdown.

Real estate investment calculators

In the traditional sense, real estate investment calculators offered by private bodies cannot be considered comprehensive. They sometimes fall short of giving the complete picture, or may even be structured not to. Factors like tax, insurance, management fee and maintenance fee are often disregarded in such mortgage and investment calculators. Firms like NerdWallet and Realtor offer real estate investment calculators that have been considered credible over the years. However, even these calculators fail to serve as a reliable final word, due to an intrinsically lower trust-factor, as a result of some unaccounted for variables.

The direct involvement of a regulatory body allays such concerns in the case of Manzili. To further the impact of the calculator, DLD is contemplating a full-stack model, offering end-to-end services, which will add to Manzili’s usefulness. The top brass of the DLD expect the initiative to facilitate the home-buying ambitions of the expatriate population in Dubai. In fact, channeling these aspirations among young private sector employees was a primary reason for DLD to launch the service. To that end, the Manzili team is planning workshops, in a bid to spread the word and educate prospective buyers.

Prabhakar Rao expects Manzili to gain traction, especially with a rise in developer partnerships and auxiliary offerings. The Managing Director of Gemini Property Developers believes that Manzili, as an initiative that results in happy households, is clearly tailor-made—both in name and in function.


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