Everything You Need to Know if You’re Buying Property in Portugal

March 25, 2022


Real estate has lots of upsides. First, it gives you a chance to relocate to somewhere you’ve handpicked and start afresh. It's not easy to purchase in a different country comes complete with lots of challenges, especially if you don’t speak the language.

That needn’t deter you, though. Luckily, there are lots of handy resources available online to make your job easier, and you’re reading one of them right now. Specially crafted for anyone looking to buy property in Portugal, this article will guide you through everything you need to know.

Getting a grasp of the language

One of the most common challenges for those buying abroad is encountering a language barrier, but there are ways to make this less complicated. For example, it can be handy to speak the same tongue as everyone else if you’re planning to move abroad permanently, so why not get a head start by taking Portuguese classes online? There are many resources that can help, from Preply, which is best for live one-on-one learning with a tutor, to apps and group classes.

If you don’t have the time to learn pre-purchase, you might have to look at other options instead, such as choosing an English-speaking agent or hiring an interpreter. Either way, make sure you understand what’s said and how the house-buying process works before diving in.

Working out what type of property you want to buy


Portugal is a beautiful country with a rich history and lots to see and to do. It is a great place to visit year-round, it has plenty of wonderful properties - and a vast real estate market. You need to work out what you’re looking for and what your budget can stretch to. This will help whittle down your search.

Here are a few essential terms you should know before you start looking:

  • Casa/moradia. A detached home.
  • Casa geminada. A semi-detached home.
  • Condos. Individual apartments with shared common areas.
  • Quintas. Rustic-style properties or farms. These are usually located in the countryside and away from popular tourist destinations.
  • Terreno. Land. This can be a good option for those looking to build a property, but is only suitable if the land is registered for habitation. You can check this by visiting the nearest city hall.
  • T1, T2, etc. The number here refers to the number of bedrooms an apartment has.

Knowing where to look for property

Once you know what you want and are confident you’ll understand the house-buying process, it’s time to start looking. Portugal has many real estate agents who can help. They’re known as inmobiliaria if you want to search for a suitable professional in the area. They should belong to the Portuguese Association of Real Estate Agents (also known as the INCI).

Don’t be afraid to request their license number so you can check their credentials and legitimacy. You can do so by visiting this website.

When it comes to purchasing a property in Portugal, some truly wonderful homes are waiting to be discovered. Follow these three simple steps, and one of them could soon be yours. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a digital nomad looking for a new horizon or a retiree in search of warmer climes; your Portuguese dream home is out there.



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