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Benfica, Lisbon

Real Estate in Portugal

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Jun 09, 2023

Summary: An expat should begin their search for a home to buy in Portugal by researching the different areas of the country and deciding which region best suits their needs. They should also consider their budget and the type of property they are looking for. Once they have narrowed down their search, they can contact a real estate agent or search online for properties that meet their criteria. Homes in Portugal typically include amenities such as air conditioning, central heating, and a fully equipped kitchen. Many homes also have a terrace or balcony, a garden, and a swimming pool. Foreigners are allowed to purchase property in Portugal, but there are certain restrictions. Non-EU citizens must obtain a visa and a residence permit before they can purchase a property. Additionally, non-EU citizens are only allowed to purchase one property in Portugal.

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How do I find a place to live in Portugal?

We asked expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"We came to Portugal last year for 2 weeks. We explored two areas only: first, the Algarve and next, Lisboa. These selections were based on weather, as we didn't want the colder weather in the North of Portugal. The Algarve is dead in winter, congested in summer, and just stuffed with Brits. The Lisboa area was delightful but we were sold when we took a train from Lisboa to Cascais. This is ideal: generally reliably nice weather, pristine beaches, restaurants all over the narrow streets and squares as well as along the pedestrian esplanade along the ocean. An easy train ride into Lisbon any time you want more culture or diversions, while plenty of museums, shows and parks in the Estoril/Cascais area. IDEAL," said one person in Cascais and Estoril.

"I first lived in an apartment near the University. You can never go wrong living around a large school. People tend to be more open to help. I eventually bought a proprty and built a four bedroom home in a quiet section of the city. The land was a bit more expensive than other areas but it was well worth it. If your going to build.... please watch your contractor closely and NEVER pay for anything up front, only for work that has been done. You can get yourself into trouble that way," remarked one foreigner who made the move to Braga.

"We travelled extensively around Portugal, and although we wanted to live in the far north it was too cold in winter so we travelled further south and loved Tomar with its peaceful atmosphere, good connections, good shopping for my wife, good facilities and excellent access. We lived close by for 3 years," explained one person living in Tomar, Portugal.

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Portugal Residency Advisors is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to providing personalized services to individuals and families seeking to relocate to Portugal. With a team of experienced professionals and strategic partnerships, we are well-positioned to assist clients with all aspects of the relocation process.

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Portugal Residency AdvisorsPortugal Residency Advisors

Portugal Residency Advisors is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to providing personalized services to individuals and families seeking to relocate to Portugal. With a team of experienced professionals and strategic partnerships, we are well-positioned to assist clients with all aspects of the relocation process.
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Click connect to have our partner contact you via e-mail and/or phone.

What is a typical expat home or apartment like in Portugal?

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

Benfica, Lisbon

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Flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. Use Promocode: LIFE10 and get 10% off your international health insurance for life!
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Flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. Use Promocode: LIFE10 and get 10% off your international health insurance for life!
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