Rent hikes make life hard for young tenants

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Updated 08 March 2013
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Rent hikes make life hard for young tenants

Young people looking for reasonably priced flats in Jeddah are seeing their dreams dashed as rents continue to soar, with two- and three-bedroom apartments now fetching SR 30,000 and up.
There is an acute housing shortage in Jeddah. Real estate agents say that available housing units in the city do not exceed five percent of all units in the city.
This has resulted in two-room apartments going for a minimum of SR 28,000 a year and four-room apartments going for more than SR 40,000.
Muhammad Salah, a young Yemeni living in Jeddah, said, “I’m looking for a four-room apartment with a reasonable price so that I can move in when I get married next month. I’ve been looking for four months but without any luck.” Salah blames landlords’ self-indulgence for the lack of affordable apartments. In the past, he said, it was no difficult to find a four-room apartment for no more than SR 20,000.
“Now,” he said, “landlords are cashing in on the huge demand for residential apartments.” A committee from JCCI found that apartment sales in the city were down some 20 percent because of high prices.
Some apartments, the committee found, were being sold at up to 50 percent above the fair price.
For their part, some landlords claim that an increase in the price of building materials has forced them to raise prices.
“Construction material prices have increased by 20 percent. Therefore, prices reflect building costs. Any landlord must be interested in making back the cost of a building within two year,” according to Abdullah Saneea, landlord of a new building.
Saeed Taleb, a young Saudi in search of a three-room apartment said, “I am still staying in a hotel after moving to Jeddah from Riyadh. I have failed to find a suitable home with a reasonable rent. There has been an unreasonable hike in the rents of residential apartments,” he said.
“After wasting lot of time searching for a flat, I could find only a small apartment for an annual rent of SR 25,000. But I was surprised to find out this apartment was only for families.”


Hodeidah offensive: Coalition forces seize weapons supplied by Iran to Houthis

Updated 20 June 2018
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Hodeidah offensive: Coalition forces seize weapons supplied by Iran to Houthis

  • The arsenal included drones, a sniper rifle, roadside bombs disguised as rocks and even a “drone boat” which had been filled with explosives that failed to detonate.
  • Equipment used to produce and load fuel for rockets that target Saudi Arabia contained Iranian labels.

JEDDAH: Saudi-led coalition officials on Tuesday displayed weapons and explosives supplied by Iran to Houthi militias in the Yemeni port city of Hodeidah. 

The arsenal included drones, a sniper rifle, roadside bombs disguised as rocks and even a “drone boat” which had been filled with explosives that failed to detonate.

Equipment used to produce and load fuel for rockets that target Saudi Arabia contained Iranian labels. The weapons were captured on the battlefield in Hodeidah and displayed at a military base in the UAE. 

“Unsurprisingly, there are advanced military components in the Houthi militias’ hands,” said Talal Al-Teneiji, an official at the UAE Foreign Ministry.

“We took time to inspect and disassemble these to figure out the source ... and we can say that these elements are military-grade materials imported from Iran to the Houthi militias.”

As the week-long offensive in Hodeidah intensified on Tuesday, coalition forces consolidated their grip on the city’s airport and there was new fighting on the main coast road leading to the city center, with Apache helicopters providing air support to the coalition. 

“We can hear the sounds of artillery, mortars and sporadic machinegun fire. The Houthis have been using tanks,” one civilian on the coastal strip said. 

“Water has been cut off to many of the areas near the corniche area because the Houthis have dug trenches and closed water pipes.”

At the airport, which the coalition has controlled since Saturday, their forces stormed the main compound and took full command.

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said: “We are waiting for the Houthis to realize the sort of military and psychological blow that they got with the airport ... we are giving them time to decide if they want to save the city ... and pull out.”

Oubai Shahbandar, a strategic communications adviser, told Arab News that “without the sea and airport of Hodeidah, the Houthi militia has effectively lost the war.”

They should agree to UN-hosted peace talks and not prolong the fighting. “The tide in this conflict has clearly turned in favor of the Arab coalition and the welfare of the Yemeni people ought to be paramount,” he said.