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Portugal

About Portugal

Portugal is one of the best countries for buying a house, because it has clear and transparent tax rules and offers facilities for obtaining residence permits, as part of golden visa provisions. It also has a special regime for non-habitual residents, aimed at attracting foreign investors through very favourable income tax rates. Its economy is in a strong period of recovery and it has one of the lowest costs of living in Europe, as well as a great climate and plenty of properties and other amenities that make it attractive for overseas buyers.

About Portugal

Capital: Lisbon
Currency: Euro
Language: Portuguese
Schengen Area Member: Yes

Portugal is Europe’s westernmost country and has been a member of the European Union since 1986. It has a population of around 10 million and operates a golden visa scheme for outside investors in the country.

Historically, Portugal was a rich and powerful nation with a strong tradition of seafaring. Alongside Spain, its explorers discovered and developed a number of overseas colonies, including Brazil and parts of Africa and Asia. In modern times it has not fared so well, as it was a dictatorship for several decades, which ended with a bloodless coup in 1974, known as the Revolution of the Carnations, which brought in a new democracy.

Since then Portugal has become one of the most popular countries with buyers seeking a home in the sun. It is particularly favoured by golfers because of its climate and great golf courses, and it is less ‘glitzy’ than some of the Spanish Costas, which appeals to those who want a more laid back and authentic experience. The main coastal resorts, as well as the capital Lisbon and major cities like Porto, are well connected to the rest of Europe in terms of international flights. It also has an excellent road network and few traffic jams.

Portuguese economy

For some years the Portuguese economy has been depressed and like other EU members it has needed a helping hand. However, in 2017 its economic recovery started to build up some momentum and places the country on a par with Spain, which is the Eurozone’s star performer. The cost of living in Portugal is very affordable, especially for food and drink products. British products are widely available in the resort areas. Consumer goods are more expensive however.

Portuguese culture

The people are very warm and friendly, however, they do enjoy a much slower pace of life than northern Europeans are used to, so do be prepared to be patient when it comes to having work done or when dealing with bureaucracy. Many Portuguese speak English and there are international schools for families with school age children, making it easier to integrate with locals and other expats.

Location and price

Portugal is one of the best countries for buying a house, because it has clear and transparent tax rules and offers facilities for obtaining residence permits, as part of golden visa provisions. It also has a special regime for non-habitual residents, aimed at attracting foreign investors through very favourable income tax rates.

Undoubtedly the Algarve is one of the areas of Portugal that draws many overseas buyers thanks to its wonderful climate, top class golf resorts and beautiful beaches. The resorts of Quinta do Lago and Vale do Lobo are the highest priced areas, but if you head inland a little to Loule, Albufeira or Vilamoura, you will find lower prices. In the western Algarve, Lagos is popular and Tavira in the east is a pretty harbour town with plenty of choice for a variety of budgets.

Lisbon is also increasingly sought after by foreign investors and the Silver Coast to its north is another highly desirable area, especially around Obidos, where prices start at around €100,000. Other areas to consider are the Blue Coast south of Lisbon and the central region, which has a number of rural properties in stunning locations.

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