In Abu Dhabi, to get a parking permit or utilities set up in a new flat, residents must have a municipality-approved tenancy contract.
The contract, authenticated through the municipality's Tawtheeq property registration system, is necessary to hook up utilities at Abu Dhabi Distribution Company (ADDC) or apply for a parking spot with Mawaqif, the capital's parking scheme.
It is the responsibility of the property owner to register with Tawtheeq, though some delays with the system mean the tenancy contract is not always universally required. Municipality officials and an ADDC spokesman said only approved contracts will be accepted.
"We want a valid leasing contract from Tawtheeq, and everyone must have it certified by the municipality," a customer service representative from ADDC said. The landlord or property management company is responsible for providing an approved contract to the tenant. The property must be registered in the electronic system before a contract can be produced. Tawtheeq officials urged residents to demand approved contracts and refuse other documentation.
Ali Al Hashimi, head of Tawtheeq, has said that tenants will not suffer because owners have failed to comply with the requirements.
"In case of emergencies, we can find a suitable bypass that will allow services to be bypassed," Mr Al Hashimi said. "Tenants should not worry that they will be affected negatively by Tawtheeq."
Most of the capital's large property management companies have signed on to use the system, and municipal officials said they expect nearly properties to be registered by the end of the year.