Portugal Property Buyers’ Guide
Dec 8, 2021
Portugal has fast become one of the most desirable countries in southern Europe for holidaymakers and expats alike. Fun, vibrant and bustling with an extraordinary heritage, there is plenty to be discovered in Portugal. The property market here is thriving and there is an abundance of expats enjoying the wonderful lifestyle with plenty of sunshine and beautiful beaches. Not to mention the number of food markets, galleries and culture to be soaked up - there really is something for everyone.
If you’ve decided you’d like to purchase a second property in Portugal or are at the very least considering it, it's certainly useful to have an idea about the properties, desirable locations and what to expect from living there.
Before you start your search, you should make sure you have all the essential information about acquiring a property in Portugal. To help you, we put together this comprehensive guide that covers all the necessary details.
What to Expect Living in Portugal?
Portugal is a location that provides second homes to many expats from across the globe. The beautiful coastlines, exceptional climate and friendly and inclusive culture are just some of the many factors that make Portugal such a desirable location.
The capital, Lisbon, is certainly a very popular spot and regarded as one of the most affordable European capitals. Lisbon is known for a bustling but also relaxed feel with its distinctive pastel-coloured houses, stunning views, old trams, and beautiful cobblestone streets. But make no mistake, Lisbon is just the tip of the iceberg in Portugal.
Porto, Amadora and the many picturesque villages in the Algarve prove to be highly popular with expats. Whether you are seeking a quiet and calming location as a retirement property or a vibrant location for a second home for your family, Portugal has something to offer any expat.
Property Prices in Portugal
Property prices in Portugal vary depending on location and the type of property you opt for. Selecting the location you want to buy is another key factor as this too will vary.
Where it is in Portugal you chose to buy, of course, comes down to the purpose of your acquisition. Preferences, of course, vary on many factors and most commonly this will be the stage of life that you’re in. For example, older people who no longer work often pick slightly more laid-back coastal towns in the Algarve. While on the other hand, young professionals tend to prefer the likes of Lisbon or Porto with plenty to do and vibrant nightlife.
Buying Property In Portugal
The process of buying a property in Portugal is, for the most part, fairly simple.
However, buyers are advised to engage with an agent, lawyer and notary. When selecting a property, buyers are advised to sign a promissory contract and pay a 10% deposit. In some cases, this is non-refundable if the buyer withdraws.
For newer developments or off-plan purchases, the buyer is often required to pay the purchase price in stages and this is something a solicitor can assist with.
After the required checks have been done a deed or ‘escritura’ is carried out with a local notary and this then confirms the names of both buyer and seller, the price paid and that all the required documentation has been checked.
Where to buy in Portugal
Having your own home in Portugal’s capital is incredibly appealing for many people. Lisbon is very popular for both holidaymakers and expats and this is perhaps in part due to the fact that the city is the perfect blend of old and new. The city is of course beautiful and adorned with beautiful architecture and art but also bustling with contemporary bars and restaurants too.
Job prospects in Lisbon are good, hence why a large number of people choose to move here. As well as this, you have the convenience of the fact that you don’t necessarily have to speak the language. Culturally, it’s incredibly diverse, attracting people from all over the world!
The city is big and property prices are also varied depending on where you wish to reside in the city. For example, the average property price in Chiado and Príncipe Real is €10,000. Not all places in Lisbon are as highly-priced as this. you will be able to find properties with as low as €8,100 and €7,500 in Parque das Nações as well as Campo de Ourique.
If you have a preference for living close to the sea or you have a particular affinity for coastal towns - Cascais could be your perfect place to purchase property. Much like Lisbon, Cascais provides you with a real balance between city and country life. It’s within reasonable proximity to Lisbon but offers you a little more peace and quiet, this is one of the key things that draws people to Cascais.
There is also the assurance of reliable warm weather and a wide array of delicious local delicacies on offer. It is also one of the most expat-dominated places in Portugal, and thus very diverse and full of life. It is one of the most beautiful sea cities in the country with so many beaches. Property prices are also relatively low as compared to Lisbon.
If you have a preference for city living, Porto could be an excellent choice for your second property location. Porto is incredibly accessible and approximately 300 kilometres from Lisbon. Unlike other EU destinations, property prices in Porto tend to be fairly reasonable and affordable.
One of the most popular locations in Porto is the Douro valley, which is not just well connected to the city but also a thriving location. The weather is also fantastic here even though Porto is regarded as one of the more rainy cities in Portugal, you are assured of sunshine for at least 7.5 hours a day!
Coimbra is a destination based in central Portugal. This city has a rich cultural history and this is apparent from its incredible architecture. Coimbra is also home to the oldest university in Europe, established in 1290. When you purchase a property in Coimbra, you will have access to other nearby cities like Porto and Lisbon.
Despite the fact that Coimbra is a highly convenient location and very accessible, the property prices here are regarded as very reasonable. You could purchase a farmhouse or opt for a four-bed house at €210,000.
The Algarve is incredibly popular with expats and particularly those who love to be immersed in the joys of coastal life such as beautiful beaches coupled with plentiful fresh seafood. The property prices in the Algarve are affordable. A prime example is that you can expect to pay within the region of €150,000 for a two-bedroom apartment and a two-bedroom townhouse can go for €200,000.
Types of Property in Portugal
As with many relaxed and sunny European destinations, villas in Portugal are commonplace. These properties are often very spacious that make perfect family homes or holiday locations. Portugal certainly has plenty of villas, with lots currently up for sale all around the country.
Whether you are looking for a rustic, countryside villa or something luxuriously modern, there are a wide range of types available in a range of prices across Portugal with something sure to suit everyone’s preference and budget.
Apartments are a very popular option in Portugal for property buyers. If you are planning to use your villa for a few months of the year over summer or you plan to reside there more frequently than this, there are some fantastic apartment complexes on the market.
If you are planning to use the property a bit more sporadically, ideally we’d recommend opting for somewhere with little to no outdoor maintenance. Complexes that have communal features, for example, pools and garden areas are often available and if you want to buy to let, there is a very active market for renting apartments in Portugal too.
Townhouses offer a slightly different set-up to the villa or apartment set up in Portugal. You still have plenty of space in a townhouse, however, you don’t have the wide-open outdoor space that often comes with a villa for example. If this is something that you're not willing to compromise on, you will be able to find townhouses with communal facilities such as a swimming pool or garden area.
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