The UAE property market has had its ups and downs over the years. Data from ReidIn showed that Dubai sale prices dropped by 4 per cent in the second quarter of this year while Abu Dhabi prices fell 1 per cent. In a falling market, sellers must be savvier about how they market their home to ensure they still secure a good return on their investment.

Use a reputable agent

Unless you are selling the property yourself, the agent is the link between you and your buyers so using a company with a poor reputation might damage your sale prospects. Shop around for an agent with a strong track record of sales and one that is registered with the Real Estate Regulatory Authority. Ask friends for recommendations and watch out for poor reviews online.

Get the price right

Use your own judgement, as well as relying on the advice of the real estate agent, when it comes to setting a price. Do your research to find a realistic figure that will ensure the property sells. Set the price too high and it may take longer to offload – too low and some buyers may think you are hiding something.

Offer the right reception

Potential buyers may want to know how much the property’s utility bills are, as well as any community maintenance or building service charges. They may also want information on traffic flow in the area, local schools and amenities, what the neighbours are like and whether local construction work is noisy. Have all the answers prepared or put together in a fact sheet to guide them. If a viewing is booked in, make sure your home isn’t too hot or too chilled. Local energy companies recommend 24 degrees Celsius as the ideal temperature for a UAE home.

Keep it clean

Scuffed walls, cracked floor tiles, a dirty house or an unkempt garden are instantly off-putting.  Make sure the villa or apartment is clean and freshly painted and the garden well watered and tidied to make the property as inviting as possible. If you are still living there, then declutter to make the home appear as spacious as possible. And tidy up – nobody wants to step over your dirty laundry. Remember you are selling a lifestyle so make it an appealing one.

The camera never lies

Don’t advertise your home using photographs that don’t tell the whole story. Posting images of a spacious garden that cuts out the apartment block towering just out of shot or, worse, using stock photographs of your development will quickly be exposed when a buyer visits the property. Nobody wants to be led up the garden path, so only use images that reflect what you are selling.

And if you’re considering buying a new home, Souqalmal.com lets you choose from 72 different mortgages in the UAE.

[Related: The real cost of buying property in the UAEKeeping up with accommodation costs in Dubai]