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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
the 'watchmen' in my building are slower than a sloth on acid when it comes to getting anything done (if you can even get that far).

I can't go to the landlord - after all, he doesn't even abide by UAE law to register tenancy contracts with Ejari (tells us to sod off and do it ourselves!).

These 'watchmen' have taken 2 weeks to send an aircon tech, almost a week to replace one bulb (apparently they have to replace them, I'm not allowed to or some crap??) and whenever I ask them when they'll come to replace the lights in the corridor on our floor, they always say 'tomorrow'... but tomorrow never comes.

not surprisingly, these clowns are ever present when they are owed their monthly dues for car washing but once they get their cash, they're nowhere to be seen.

who will watch the watchmen?! I don't know!

How do you deal with useless watchmen in your building? Do I have any options that don't involve serious harm to said watchmen?!
 

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why dont you just do Ejari yourself then?

My estate agent told me to avoid Ejari as it was a waste of money, i went and did it anyway so my arse is covered....:rolleyes:
 

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are you sure these watchmen are responsible for all these things?

I highly doubt they are! You are shooting the messengers if you take it out on them.

They are probably paid less than AED 1,000 for 12 hour shifts/6 day weeks. They are not (or definitely should not be for the money they get) managing buildings.

Much more likely the people they are passing your messages to are not doing their jobs. Can you not speak to the building manager? If you live in an area where foreigners can buy ask neighbours who own their place who to complain to.
 

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My estate agent told me to avoid......... s:
That's a clear instruction to do it, then.....
The reason he said that was because you'd ask him to do it (like he should), and he couldnt be arsed....
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
why dont you just do Ejari yourself then?

My estate agent told me to avoid Ejari as it was a waste of money, i went and did it anyway so my arse is covered....:rolleyes:
I have done Ejari myself - the issue here is that the landlord was meant to do it (and is actually required to do it by law) but chooses not to. FWIW, I needed an Ejari certificate for visa purposes so it couldn't be avoided.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
are you sure these watchmen are responsible for all these things?

I highly doubt they are! You are shooting the messengers if you take it out on them.

They are probably paid less than AED 1,000 for 12 hour shifts/6 day weeks. They are not (or definitely should not be for the money they get) managing buildings.

Much more likely the people they are passing your messages to are not doing their jobs. Can you not speak to the building manager? If you live in an area where foreigners can buy ask neighbours who own their place who to complain to.
yes, they are responsible for all of these things and there is no building manager.

their wages are irrelevant (sad but not pertinent). they have been tasked with these duties and that is what has been relayed to me by the landlord and the real estate agent. i'm just working with what i have here.

what i don't get is why they are just so useless. would you be ok with bins in your building (at the entrance of every elevator) not being cleaned regularly, even with rubbish overflowing? I know I'm not ok with it, especially when it's the first thing people see in the lobby!

it's not like i'm asking for much. i tip them every time they do anything for me (even if one time they were quite brazen asking for 200-300dhs for coming in to put in a 1 metre curtain rod which took all of 5 minutes). the money isn't the issue though - i know they do it tough but there's a thing called dignity and a thing called principle.

fwiw, they have finally fixed the light in the corridor but they're still faffing about with the air con technician. this is the reason i'm paying 3x as much for DEWA as i should be - so you can imagine my desire to get this sorted asap!
 

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yes, they are responsible for all of these things and there is no building manager.

their wages are irrelevant (sad but not pertinent). they have been tasked with these duties and that is what has been relayed to me by the landlord and the real estate agent. i'm just working with what i have here.

what i don't get is why they are just so useless. would you be ok with bins in your building (at the entrance of every elevator) not being cleaned regularly, even with rubbish overflowing? I know I'm not ok with it, especially when it's the first thing people see in the lobby!

it's not like i'm asking for much. i tip them every time they do anything for me (even if one time they were quite brazen asking for 200-300dhs for coming in to put in a 1 metre curtain rod which took all of 5 minutes). the money isn't the issue though - i know they do it tough but there's a thing called dignity and a thing called principle.

fwiw, they have finally fixed the light in the corridor but they're still faffing about with the air con technician. this is the reason i'm paying 3x as much for DEWA as i should be - so you can imagine my desire to get this sorted asap!
Then it sounds like an incredibly poorly managed building....

I'd look to move out to a place in a better run building at the first chance.

there are well run buildings in Dubai which you will find if you search and ask the existing tenants for their views. Definitely do not ask agents for help on this - all then all want is their commission.
 

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Without wishing to be offensive, they see you as a mug and are taking the piss.

Dubai up!
exactly.

install curtain rail
'demand' 200-300 tip
you pay up!

surprised they haven't installed a big red flashing tip-beacon above your front door!
 

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up yer kilt!
My uncle used to have a bumper sticker saying that on his Capri in the 70's :D

Anyway. Nobody wants to be that cringey expat that shouts at Spinneys bagging staff for no reason, while engrossed in whatever crap is on their Blackberry. There are many people on a salary here that is unfathomable to probably most posters and it's nice to afford them some dignity during their 15 hour shift.

At the same time, there are workers that see you as nothing but a cash cow and will do everything they can to get even 50 fils out of you. If circumstances mean you have to relate with each other then by all means initially treat them with respect and as a co-worker. But if you're not getting the service then deal with it in a manner they understand.

For a start quit the car washing service, it's only 30-50 at the garage and they hoover inside too. Some guy wiping a manky rag from a dirty bucket of water over it daily soon knackers up your paintwork anyway.
 

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For a start quit the car washing service, it's only 30-50 at the garage and they hoover inside too. Some guy wiping a manky rag from a dirty bucket of water over it daily soon knackers up your paintwork anyway.
Very true, but not everyone can spend 1-1.5 hours every 3 days (if you have a dark color) washing their cars at a station with long queues.
You have a queue for washing, and then a longer queue for drying as the workers are too scared to stand up to some OCD guy who wants them to spend half an hour on his car drying every speck
 

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Very true, but not everyone can spend 1-1.5 hours
:eek:

Business bay you're in and out in 20 minutes for 30 AED plus tip. Multiple bays so even it someone is insisting they redo the dust caps you bypass them. Garages on Al Wasl and the beach road tend to be empty most of the time too.
 

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You got the building security guard to put up a curtain rod for you and you're complaining he asked for some money for doing so?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
You got the building security guard to put up a curtain rod for you and you're complaining he asked for some money for doing so?
well we were told these 3 guys were the 'watchmen' and they would take care of anything that needed to be looked at in the building - from cleaning, to repairs to installations of curtain rods...and also 'security'.

So apologies for coming across as some sort of ungrateful sod - I'm merely just working with what I have here!

As it is, these guys don't actually do any sort of security work - I think it was a month before I actually met any one of them and one resident told me I'd be lucky to see them since in her experience, they were always 'sleeping'.

Nice to know we have cameras and a CCTV monitor in the lobby...with no one keeping watch...

FWIW, I checked with a few other residents and they've all said the same thing: work with these guys as best as you can because there's no other choice.
 

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FWIW, I checked with a few other residents and they've all said the same thing: work with these guys as best as you can because there's no other choice.
there is a choice - move out

sounds like you live in one of the worst managed buildings in Dubai. Is it one of the older buildings in Bur Dubai or Deira?

I'd move ASAP to one of the newer better managed buildings unless you are on an extreme shoestring budget.
 

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there is a choice - move out
"if you don't like it here, move back" ? :p
a lot of buildings (e.g. the one I used to live in AL Barsha in) have the same guys doubling up as handymen and "security". Obviously these are not the fanciest buildings around, but not bad either.
A lot of buildings in ABu Dhabi have the same arrangement as well, and the rents are eye watering for some of them.
Anyways - OP you could call a maintenance company on your own? Call out charges would be something like a min. of 100 Dhs though.
 

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In the 80s and 90s that was the main arrangemtn in 95% buildings.

One or 2 watchmen, often called "Natoor" who would handle security and maintenance and washing cars and sometimes unsavory stuff. At one stage, during the housing crisis in Abu Dhabi, watchmen would demand 2000 dhs for allowing you to rent (the alternative was to bribe the building manager 4-5k)

In one of the buildings i stayed in, the watchman would try to extort money; he asked me for 500 every month, of course after i refused i found maintenance being absent and later found out he ensured maintenance does not come to our flat because we did not pay him his extortion money.....
 
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