Accommodation in Oman
There has been a growth in residential development in recent years and expats looking for accommodation in Oman will have a variety of options to choose from.
Most expats in Oman live in the capital of Muscat and the towns that encompass the Capital Region, including Ruwi, Mutrah and Qur’m.
Most expat accommodation in Oman is in the form of apartments, stand-alone villas or townhouses, often within a secure housing complex. Most homes are new and well maintained, although there have been complaints of poor construction standards and maintenance by landlords.
Most expats choose to rent in Oman. Rental agreements are generally for one year, and the lease is negotiable. A deposit of two months’ rent is required to secure an apartment or villa, and the first two months’ rent may be payable upfront. However, this is often negotiable. If a company is paying for the accommodation, the deposit is sometimes waived as the rent for the entire lease period will usually be paid upfront.
Accommodation for expats in Oman is mostly unfurnished, although furnished options are also available. Costs vary according to the size, facilities and area. Utilities such as water, gas and electricity are excluded from the quoted rental price. It’s important to read the rental agreement carefully as this will outline what maintenance and utilities the tenant is responsible for and what charges the landlord must do.
Facilities at apartment blocks often include gyms, swimming pools and a laundry, while villas normally have maids' quarters and a garden too.
Employers in Oman often include a housing allowance as part of the package for foreign workers, so expats should factor this into their contract negotiations.
In the years just before 2012, the cost of housing in Oman was at a premium. The market has eased considerably since then, and accommodation prices are coming down, as is the case elsewhere in the Middle East. A lot of new homes are being built, and expats will be able to find a place to fit their budget, mood and style.