new co-living space where you don’t pay a penalty if you move out early

A new co-living space has popped up in Dubai giving people on annual rental contracts the freedom to move out whenever they want, without incurring hefty penalties.

Hive, located in Jumeirah Village Circle, opened its doors to residents in late January and has 175 rooms, from studio spaces to four-bedroom apartments.

Within weeks of opening, the modern apartment block was at full capacity.

When I first came to Dubai in 2012 I was astounded by how out of date the process was to rent a place. Apartments were left open for you to view and you’d pay in cheques

Bass Ackerman, founder of Hive

“Hive is the first real residential community in Dubai that runs on the ethos of being more collaborative and connected,” said founder Bass Ackermann.

“It’s a plug and play concept, which means apartments are fully furnished, residents pay their rent monthly through our dedicated mobile app and it includes all bills. We’ve done away with things like brokerage commission too.

“When I first came to Dubai in 2012, at the age of 22, I was astounded by how out of date the process was to rent a place. Apartments were left open for you to view and you’d pay in cheques.

“Here I was in this futuristic city, so I thought why not make renting easier, which is when I came up with the idea of Hive.”

A person looking to rent an apartment at Hive, which was developed by ARM Holding, requires an Emirates ID and will have to sign contracts on an annual basis, however they can opt to leave the apartment early, giving 30 days’ notice.

The industry norm otherwise is for a landlord to be compensated when a tenant needs to cancel the contract early. The penalty is usually between one and two months’ rent.

What does Hive offer?

To secure an apartment at Hive, tenants pay two months’ rent to move in, one month of which is a refundable deposit.

Prices and sizes vary, with studio apartments starting from Dh5,500 a month, one-bedroom units at Dh6,500 a month and three and four-bedroom units starting from Dh4,500 per month per person.

Bigger apartments can be shared by a group of people, but everyone has to sign the contract.

“My biggest pet peeve about renting here was that you can’t find many long-term places where you can pay monthly,” said Mr Ackerman.

“Hive is paid monthly. We have a dedicated app where we invoice tenants at the start of each month.

“You don’t have the headache of setting up Ejaris or forking out hefty deposits for air conditioning or Dewa services, it’s all set up and included in the price.”

Each apartment is fully furnished and decorated in a modern style. They each come with a smart TV, microwave, fridge-freezer, gas hob, kettle and toaster.

With around 31 different nationalities living within the building, Mr Ackerman said the average age of a tenant is 32.

“I really wanted to gear the place up for young professionals looking to stay in Dubai for a few years,” he said.

“When we designed Hive we wanted to own the demographic of tenants aged between 25 to 35 who have a more liberal outlook.

“The first thing we wanted to tackle was affordability. A young professional doesn’t need a huge amount of space in an apartment so we chose to optimise the space in the communal areas.”

On the ground floor, there is a communal kitchen fitted out with modern appliances, a large lounge and co-working space that includes working pods, a gamer’s room, a laundromat, and a terrace BBQ area.

It also has a rooftop lap and lounge pool, an open-air cinema and gym, and an amphitheatre, all of which are free to use by tenants.

“Going back to the idea of it being a collaborative and connected co-living space, we make sure we put on lots of free events for our tenants,” said Mr Ackerman.

“We’ve hosted DJs, rooftop yoga sessions, seminars, free BBQs, it’s really about making people feel part of a community.”

While the building is at full capacity, interested tenants can apply to go on the waiting list for an apartment via Hive’s website.

Updated: April 14, 2022, 3:51 AM

Ninjay H Briotyon

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