Yes, the value of the property must be at least AED 1 million and be fully paid (no mortgage on it). Do a search. Info already in the forum and all over the internet.
By reading what i just wrote, the whole thing sounds so ludicrous. Sounds like people are better off getting a free zone trade license and opening a company to sponsor themselves! What is the point of owning a property if you still have to pay for some license that will cost you 18K aed?? Granted, sounded like the wife didn't have exact details but I don't think she'd be wrong about the final figure they ended up paying!
No, they definitely have the investors visa, but now I remember she said they got an 'investors license' (not trading license, but I couldn't remember earlier) and that they had been dealing with the land department for this. Apparently having that investors license is a requirement to apply for the investors visa. But she also mentioned it turned out to be quite expensive, so I think setting up a company is better. A least they wouldn't have to renew every 6 months!Yep. Sounds like the family in question didn't get their visas through property ownership but by setting up a dummy free zone company.
I'm still confident that buying property alone isn't going to get you a residency visa.