Choosing your property


We have put together a starting list of important questions to ask yourself:


  • What area are you looking to live in? The Western or Eastern Algarve or the Silver Coast?
  • Are you looking for somewhere in the countryside, or in a village, town, city or coastal resort?
  • What sort/type of property are you looking for? A modern apartment, a town house or villa, a quirky character home or farmhouse with outbuildings?
  • Do you want to be in a tourist development or in a more residential area?
  • Do you want to be amongst other expats and foreigners, or somewhere more Portuguese?
  • How big does the property need to be? How many bedrooms?
  • An old house or something new? If old, are you happy to manage a serious renovation? Or perhaps a redecoration is more in line with your plans?
  • Do you want a terrace, off-road parking, a garden, pool, or perhaps some land with fruit trees?
  • What type of view, if any, would you prefer from the property?
  • What else is needed to fulfil your property requirements?
  • Will it be suitable for lettings, if you intend to do rentals?


  • Distance from local bar, shops, restaurants, local market, beach, marina?
  • Distance from airports (ideally more than one)?
  • Adequate pharmacy and medical facilities in the area?
  • What else needs to be in the area – schools, entertainment, gym, etc?
  • Will you need to use public transport?


  • When can you realistically think about viewing properties?
  • When will you be in a financial position to purchase and what will your budget be?
  • By when would you like to be handed the keys to your new property?

Try and pull together as much information as you can about Portugal, on an ongoing basis. Look at both positive and negative stories about the country, from newspapers, magazine, books, etc. Visiting overseas property exhibitions is also a useful way of researching the Portuguese property market and getting first-hand information without actually going there.

Make copious notes on locations you like, styles of properties that seem suitable, the costs of properties and good property websites, and note down any questions that you can’t find an answer to. Check out forums and chat rooms where expats discuss Portugal, and make a note of any of the issues and complaints that stand out.

By gathering information, you’ll start to paint a picture of what’s out there. The more you understand the finance, property buying process, legalities, potential issues/risks and the overall journey, the easier you’ll find the process.

Further reading for Buying In Portugal


Viewing Guide

Finding the right property can be a challenge. What do you need to think about early on?



Hidden Costs

The price of the property as listed is never the price that you will end up paying. There are a host of other costs.


Legal Matters

Buying a property in Portugal has very different legal requirements to the UK.


Currency Zone

Did you know that you could save thousands of pounds when emigrating by using a currency specialist?