From someone who has just done it… 

I have lived in Dubai for just short of 11 years now, but I’ve been lucky enough to live with my family up until very recently. And as such, adulting has come into full force – there are important things to remember when moving into your first apartment in Dubai.

No, I’m not talking about Ejari’s and all those really big and important bits, that goes without saying – we’re talking about the equally important but seldom forgotten parts of moving into an apartment in Dubai.

Here are the things to remember when moving into an apartment in Dubai for the first time. 

Is the oven/stove electric or gas?

Some apartment buildings only allow one of the other, for some you’d be able to use a combination cooker where the oven is electric and the stove is gas (my preference) however, some buildings have regulations on this.

If it’s electric:

You’re lucky as the oven and stove would simply need to be plugged into the wall, or connected directly into the socket.

If it’s gas:

There are a few follow-up questions if you’re cooking with gas – literally. Such as finding out if the building has centralised gas, or if you would need to install your own gas bottle. Newer apartment buildings typically have centralised gas as it is safer.

For centralised gas, you will need to organise with the building’s gas company to have the gas activated on the same day as you install your cooker.

When paying for your consumption – every building might have a different system, for some buildings you receive a registration card and when the meter reaches a certain level, make a call to the gas man and they will top up your gas. In other buildings, there will be a monthly reading where your meter will be checked and then you will pay per consumption.

Does the building have maintenance?

If yes:

Great! Find out from your building manager, or security what the steps are for putting in requests, should you have any issues with the apartment. It would also be beneficial to find out what is included in the building maintenance.

If no:

That is okay, but it would be useful to find out with your landlord or realtor what kind of coverage there is when it comes to maintaining your airconditioners, or if there are plumbing or electrical issues.

Have you booked a cleaning company for a deep clean?

This seems a bit excessive, and a deep clean might not be entirely necessary but it is a nice luxury that if you can afford it, I would highly recommend.

Moving into an apartment can be messy, from boxes leaving behind those little pieces of paper, to styrofoam granules all over the place – it gets dusty and messy quickly on moving day. This is why it is super useful to book a cleaning company just for a few hours to make sure your apartment has a fresh start once you’ve moved in.

Essential kitchen items:


Hear me out, don’t forget a dustbin. It was an item that I took as an oversight and then very quickly realised that I had forgotten to order one.

Cleaning products

In between moving, I found myself constantly reaching for the all-purpose cleaner and cloth to keep my apartment in somewhat of a decent condition throughout all of the moving pieces. I’d also recommend getting a floor cleaner and a vacuum because as I said, it can get very dusty, very quickly.

Clothing rack

The first load of washing at my house mostly consisted of towels and linen just to make sure that everything was fresh. But I quickly realised, washing these items is great, but where do you hang them to dry?

Drying rack

I also found myself washing and rewashing all of my cutlery and crockery. I’m personally a bit of a neat freak and realised very quickly that I had nowhere to store my washed plates and bits to dry.

Does the apartment have enough storage space?

Yet another aspect of moving that I had not considered. I am a woman which stereotypically and unfortunately true means that I have a lot of stuff.

From bowls and kitchen utensils that I have collected over the years to clothing, blankets, memories, scrapbooks, photo albums, and of course all of the cleaning products and groceries – pots and pans?

There has to be enough space to store all of this around the apartment and whether you source additional storage from IKEA or under the sofa, you will need the storage space if your apartment doesn’t have enough.

Do you need a moving permit?

Did you know that moving permits even existed? And when did adulting require so many different documents and permits – maybe always but this was all fairly new to me. However, certain areas of Dubair move-in and move-out permits, so be sure to check with the security of your area, or building regulations to find out when the moving days are and if you require any special permission.

Images: Getty