Assistance in recovering our investment in the Dubai Lagoons project sign now

Government of Dubai
Land Department
P O Box 1166
Dubai, U.A.E
December 15, 2009

Re: Assistance in recovering our investment in the Dubai Lagoons project

Dear Mr. Marwan,

This letter is in reference to a purchase that we made in the Dubai Lagoons project which is being developed by Schon Properties in the Dubai Investment Park. To date most of us have paid about 50\% of the purchase price to Town Center Management LLC a brokerage agent for the developer, Schon Properties. The project had initial delivery dates of between 2007 and 2009 but, as of today, on most of the zones not a single brick has been laid. Schon Properties have now given new delivery dates which are anything between six months and two years away.
Schon Properties have defaulted on most of their terms, such as delivery dates, registration of the units, failure to deliver compensation for late delivery and non-issuance of the contract but yet they are sending threatening letters to the investors who have diligently made their installments on time and, in some instances, cancellation letters, not only from the developer but also in the name of the Dubai Land Department.
Schon Properties continue to give misleading statements and false promises whenever investors contact them and they keep changing information about the project status and delivery dates. We the investors are fed up with their lame excuses, lies, lack of customer service and aggressive scare tactics. For these reasons we decided to request your intervention to recover our money as we have completely lost trust in Schon Properties and, at the current rate of progress, very much doubt that this project will be completed in next five years, if at all.
Consequently we would very much appreciate your assistance in recovering our money from Schon Properties as they are not listening to their investors and have no interest in our concerns, a conclusion we have reached due to the following reasons:
1. Schon Properties had an issue with RTA back in 2006 and 2007 which they failed to disclose to the investors at the time of purchase but now bring it up as an excuse at every opportunity.
2. The whole project was suppose to be completed in August 2009 (give or take six months) but as of now construction has not even started on most of the zones.
3. Schon Properties is in default with regards to registration of the units and issuance of contracts after 60 days of purchase. A great number of investors are yet to receive a contract from them.
4. Schon Properties has threatened certain investors (who have already paid more than 50\% of the purchase price) with cancellation letters and yet they have not even commenced work on most of the zone. Further , many investors Signed agreements with Schon on either 50 /50 or 60 /40 percent payment plan and that was the only attraction to invest for a low salaried earning investor that he would pay balance installments either 50 \% or 40 \% within about 5 years after taking over the possession of apartment unit. . Now Schon is forcing to sign a construction based plan instead of already signed payment plan (with handover date of Dec 2008). If Dubai Land or RERA newly implemented rules supersede the already signed previous contract then the investor will not be able to pay the full amount of money according to the construction based plan, therefore , many investor will loose 30 \% or more which is already paid to the Schon properties.
5. Schon Properties are making the Dubai Land Department send cancellation letters for non-payment of units whereas they have not even commenced the construction and, according to the Dubai Land Department, payment should be linked to construction milestones. Some investors have paid more than 50\% of the purchase price while construction has not commenced.
6. Schon Properties also promised (contractually) investors long term residence visas which, it now appears, they did not have the authority to do. One of the biggest attractions to purchasing a property in Dubai was the right to residency.
7. Due to the unnecessary, excessive delays and all the irregularities on the part of Schon Properties those of us living in Dubai have had to extend the lease agreements on our current places of residence and paid money to our landlords which should have been used towards the installments on the units we are purchasing from Schon Properties.
8. Schon Properties are trying to cancel existing contracts and have issued revised ones which not only contain onerous and unacceptable repayment schedules but also omit clause 7.1 which grants the investor the right of compensation in respect of late delivery of the property purchased.
9. Many investors have given their lifes savings to Schon Properties and trusted them to fulfill their part of the deal and all they get in return are unrealistic completion dates, lies, false promises, more debt, and anxiety.
10. The behavior of Schon Properties is tarnishing the image of Dubai as a safe place to invest.
In conclusion, we would like to say that we understand that delays in such projects is natural but there are limits to what an investor can be expected to accept. In the case of Dubai Lagoons no units have been delivered five years after launch and still the delays and excuses continue. The regulatory authorities in Dubai need to hold Schon Properties responsible for such unreasonable delays and irresponsible behavior by setting up an inquiry with an independent third party. Delays may be inevitable but for a developer to lie to investors, ignore their concerns and then threaten them is totally unacceptable. Schon Properties need to be held responsible and punished for creating such an environment which is not only affecting the investors daily life but also creating bad publicity for Dubai which was previously regarded as safe haven for investment.

We therefore request you to assist us in recovering our investments. For many of us losing this money will put us in deep financial difficulties. Please remember that we have not only invested in this project and Schon Properties but in the future of Dubai as well.

Yours sincerely,

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Juanita EspinozaBy:
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Petition target:
Dubai Land Department

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