Moving to Brazil

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By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Nov 27, 2021

Summary: Moving to Brazil? Expats talk about what you need to know before moving to Brazil.

What do I need to know before moving to Brazil?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Brazil, they said:

"Do lots of research as it is available on line. Include in your research a local attorney who speaks English and is a member of either Briton's legal Bar Association or the ABA in the States. It is always nice when the local attorney is licensed in one of those countries because unethical practices could get them barred. With their membership in one of the Bar Associations there should be available info on whether any complaints have been filed against them in the past. These local attorneys act very much like the Title companies in the States. They do all the research to ensure free and clear property and titles. Make sure that you visit the area and the home to ensure it is what you hoped it to be. I would also recommend staying at least 2 weeks and spend time knowing the area. THE MOVE: Moving from the UK or USA is probably not a big deal. However, to get your household goods into Brazil.....well that's another matter. For instance, the USA moving company needs a 3rd party in Brazil to facilitate receiving your container and moving it to your new home. They will need paperwork that to us seems highly unusual and bureaucratic. Brazil is after all a highly bureaucratic place to live and if you haven't lived here then your in for a surprise. One of the documents that I needed was my original boarding pass from the airline that I flew from Miami to Recife. The 3rd party Brazilian company stated that without the boarding pass to prove how I arrived in Brazil then the container could not be received in Brazil (my federally stamped passport and my federally stamped Entry Card does not count). The boarding pass along with a number of other paperwork had to be notarized at one of the local Cartarios and returned to the 3rd party company. It will require several hours of standing in line to get 5 minutes of work completed. If your moving to Brazil this is how they do things and all the complaining from me or you will not change it. With all this said, I will say now that after all the standing in line waiting, jumping through hoops and getting mad, after returning home to our villa and seeing the sunset from our roof top........PRICELESS," commented one expat who made the move to Praia de Pipa.

"I am sorry to say that after 14 years in Brazil my advise would be don't move, please reconsider. As my dentist (Brazilian) recently said, "Sao Paulo is a cruel city". I hear his comments with a heavy heart. I have grown to love Brazil but the prices, lack of infrastructure, noise, traffic and now protests and violence have taken their toll," remarked another expat in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

How do I find a place to live in Brazil?

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder of Expat Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Some of Betsy's more popular articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Italy, 12 Things to Know Before Moving to The Dominican Republic and the Living in Panama Guide. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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Get a quote for health insurance from our partner, Allianz Care.
Get a Quote

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Get a quote for health insurance from our partner, Allianz Care.
Get a Quote

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Allianz Care International Health InsuranceInternational Health Insurance

Get a quote for health insurance from our partner, Allianz Care.
Get a Quote

Allianz Care International Health InsuranceInternational Health Insurance

Get a quote for health insurance from our partner, Allianz Care.
Get a Quote

Living in Brazil GuideLiving in Brazil Guide

Whether it's the beaches, exciting nightlife or the banking industry that draw you to Brazil, expats seem to truly enjoy life in Brazil. We've pulled together tips from expats in Brazil about learning Portuguese, crime, international schools, renting an apartment and much more.

Brazil Forum Brazil Forum
Meet other expats and talk about living in Brazil.

Healthcare in BrazilHealthcare in Brazil

Expats in Brazil are able to get excellent health care in and many of the larger cities in Brazil. There is national health care available, but expats still strongly recommend private health insurance while living in Brazil.

Cost of Living in BrazilCost of Living in Brazil

Expats offer insight into the cost of living in Brazil.

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Real estate listings in popular cities and towns in Brazil.

Pros Cons of Living in BrazilPros & Cons of Living in Brazil

Take off your rose-colored glasses and learn what expats have to say about the biggest challenges and the greatest rewards of living in Brazil.

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Advice for people retiring in Brazil.

Contribute to Brazil Network Contribute
Help other expats and newcomers by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Brazil.

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