Qatar Guide


Housing In Qatar

There are various housing options in Qatar, and for most expats that involves different forms of rented accommodation. Many employers provide housing or a housing allowance.

Rent prices tend to fluctuate in Qatar, so if your accommodation package is a housing allowance make sure it is enough to cover the cost of the type of housing you require.

Types of Accommodation

Family housing tends to be either private villas or compound housing. Compound housing is popular because they offer amenities like swimming pools, gyms, play areas, a small shop and depending on the size of the compound there are often restaurants, football pitches and tennis courts. Most, if not all compounds have a security gate so they are considered safe and family friendly. This does however, mean that there are often waiting lists for compound accommodation.

Private villa’s afford you the privacy that is not always an option in compounds and often at a cheaper rate.

Apartment buildings often have amenities like a gym and private parking so are an alternative if you don’t require the space of a villa. Some apartment blocks don’t provide parking facilities and in some locations parking can be a serious issue, so always take that into consideration. Some compounds have mixed housing of villas and apartments.

Serviced apartments are also popular. These furnished apartments offer cleaning and laundry services and allow long and short term stay.

Finding Accommodation

Real Estate agents can help you find the type of accommodation and advice you about the best locations for your needs. If you prefer to search yourself you have several options. The classifieds sections of the local newspapers as well as the Qatar Living site all have accommodation sections.

Alternatively, you could approach the management of a compound or apartment building you are interested in. If you have identified locations you’re interested in it is often worth scouting the area as many buildings have for rent signs up.

There are several factors that might effect your choice of location. The daily commute is an obvious one, whether to work or the school run, driving in Doha is definitely a consideration, especially as the preparations for the 2022 FIFA World Cup mean road works are almost always inevitable.

Required Documents

  • In order to rent a property in Qatar you need:
  • Copy of your passport
  • Qatar ID card
  • Qatar Resident Permit (RP)
  • Salary Certificate from employer

Contract of Accommodation

All housing contracts should be written in both English and Arabic, although only the Arabic is legally binding, so if your contract is only in Arabic you are within your rights to ask for an English translation and it is recommended to have it then verified by a trusty party.

Most contracts are for a year and can then be renewed annually.

Once signed, all contracts must be registered by the landlord with the Office of Registration of Rental Contracts within 30 days, along with a registration fee of 1% of the annual rent.

Go through the contract thoroughly paying attention to all the terms and clauses. Things to consider would be:

  • The rental fee and mode of payment
  • The terms of the security deposit
  • Duration of the contract, beginning date to end date
  • Responsibilities of the landlord (like maintenance and repairs)
  • Restrictions on the tenant (no pets, no smoking)
  • If it’s furnished accommodation insist on an inventory
  • Clarify was is considered necessities (air condition units)

Most tenancy contracts demand post dated cheques for the duration of the contract and require a security deposit of one month’s rent, which is refundable at the end of the tenancy as long as there is no damage to the property and no outstanding rent payments.


In the case of a dispute with your landlord you need to register your complaint at the Rent Dispute Resolution Committee. There is a fee of QR100 for the party that files the complaint and the tenants have a legal right to a six months eviction period.


After finding your accommodation and signing the contract the next step is to arrange for all your utilities.

Water and Electricity

Electricity and water are supplied by the same company Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation, more widely known as Kahrama. To apply for your water and electricity to be connected you need to fill out a Kahrama application form which is available online or from a Kahrama service centre.

Required Documents

  • Completed Kahrama application form signed by your sponsor
  • A letter from your employer
  • Copy of Qatar ID card
  • The Kahrama reference number (in villa’s it’s usually on the electricity box, or for apartments it's on the front door frame)
  • Current metre readings
  • A copy of your lease.
  • QR2000 deposit, QR1,200 for electricity and QR800 for water.
  • It should then take no more than 48 hours for your water and electricity to be connected.

Payment of bills

A monthly estimate is sent out for both utilities on one bill. You can pay your bill at all major banks, Q-Post service counters, at Kahrama customer service centres or online

One point to consider with electric appliances in Qatar is that mains electricity is usually 220-240 volt with a three square pin socket. Many appliances have two pin plugs but adaptors are widely available Gas

Gas cylinders are available from WOQOD petrol stations and various supermarkets. A 12kg cylinder plus gas is QR365 and the 6kg cylinder plus gas is QR283.

Required Documents

  • Copy of your passport
  • Resident Permit and, or Qatar ID card
  • Bank details to set up direct debit payment if desired

Mobile phones services are available from either Ooredoo or Vodafone Qatar. For a prepaid mobile connection both companies only require a copy of your passport or Qatar ID card.

For various mobile packages visit showrooms or check online:

ooreedoo or

Telephone and Internet

Landline and internet services are provided by Ooredoo. Ooredoo’s home services package include, landline, broadband internet and television. Visit an Ooredoo shop or service centre for advice on the best package for your home needs.