When looking for housing in Portugal, you should first learn more about the market in general – think about the more modest or conversely expensive options in major cities like Lisbon and Porto and the much cheaper options in the surrounding metropolitan areas and inland. You will be happy to know that real estate in Portugal is quite affordable, and when planning a move to Portugal for permanent residence, you can even buy a house to get a visa or citizenship.
You can find different types of housing in Portugal, from the usual apartments that are available in all cities, to the typical Portuguese farms located in more remote and quieter areas. There are many options, there really is a lot to choose from. Portugal has a lot to choose from.
Portugal. How much rent should I expect?
When choosing a place to live in Portugal, the average rent costs about €1,100 ($1,200) per month, but prices will vary widely depending on the part of the country you choose to live in and the type of housing you’re looking for. Cities closer to the coast will generally be more expensive than those in the interior eastern part of the country. Lisbon and Porto top the list of the most expensive cities in the country.
The following is a ranking of the most expensive neighborhoods (prices in EUR/USD):
The cheapest residential for a residence permit in Portugal to rent in the Guarda area. The average rental price in this area is less than 350 euros ($385), which means you can find housing even cheaper than that amount.
The areas with the lowest average rent per month (prices in EUR/USD):
Castelo Branco 390/425
Villa Real 400/435
Peculiarities of renting in Portugal for a foreigner
Getting a permanent residence in Portugal shouldn’t be a problem for foreigners. However, you may find it difficult to communicate with potential landlords when looking at a house. Some older people may not speak any language other than Portuguese.
You’ll generally encounter the same problems as the country’s citizens when it comes to finding housing that’s right for the price and the other parameters that are important to you. In a city like Porto or Lisbon, a really good offer can be gone in a day or two.
What documents do I need to rent?
You will need the following documents when you sign a lease in Portugal:
a valid ID or passport
current pay stubs or tax return
If you can’t provide a pay stub or tax return, you may need a guarantor. He or she will have to provide the same documents.
As a tenant, you may request the following documents from the landlord:
caderneta predial (land register)
licença de Habitação (certificate of residence, a license that guarantees that the building can be lived in)
You will usually be asked to pay a deposit equal to one or two months’ rent.
Furnished or unfurnished homes
You will find both furnished and unfurnished accommodations in Portugal. Apartamento mobilado is a furnished rental. Usually this means that the house has all the furniture you need such as beds, sofas and dressers and maybe even some decor.
The unfurnished apartments usually have an equipped kitchen with stove, oven, and cabinets, and a fully functional bathroom.
Short-term rentals: what you need to know
If you need a short term rental or vacation home when you first arrive in Portugal, there is no problem. Since Portugal is a tourist country, there will be plenty of options. You can find vacation rentals almost anywhere in the country on popular vacation rental sites or through tourist boards.
For short-term rentals, you won’t need any documentation other than an ID or passport. As for average costs, vacation rentals can cost anywhere from 25 to 100 euros ($27 to $110) per night, depending on the location.
Lease agreement and deposit
The most common leases, or Contratos de arrendamento, are one-year, two-year and even up to six-year contracts. Contracts for more than six years are also possible, but this is less common. The maximum term set by law for a lease contract is 30 years.
Tenancy agreements in Portugal have a default term of two years, unless otherwise specified in the agreement. It is usually renewed for three years when not otherwise specified.
Your lease must contain the following information:
personal information for both parties, such as name, date of birth, citizenship, and marital status
lodging license number and date
rules and conditions set between tenant and landlord
Some important features and rules about renting in Portugal
There are these rules for the tenant in Portugal:
The presence of a written contract is mandatory — oral agreements are not legally recognized.
Your landlord can stop you from subletting.
Your landlord can increase your rent once a year, depending on the length of your contract.
At the same time, it’s important to know that your landlord has no right to enter your home without permission and without your knowledge. Also, your landlord is obliged to register the lease on the Portal das Finanças, the official website of the tax authorities in Portugal.
If you’re planning to get a pet, don’t forget to state this and include a clause in the contract that allows you to do so so you won’t have problems later on.
If you’ve lived in the rental unit for at least one-third of the length of the agreement, you can terminate it. You will need to notify your landlord four months (120 days) before the departure date.
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