Real estate

Real estate in Portugal as a reason to get a residence permit in Europe

Buying a property in Portugal is a profitable investment and an opportunity to ensure a “safe haven” in a peaceful EU country. Learn what kind of property to buy and how much it costs to become a Portuguese resident.

Real estate in Portugal as a reason to get a residence permit in Europe

How to get a Portugal residence permit for the purchase of the real estate

Buyers of real estate in Portugal can participate in the Portugal Golden Visa Program. In this case, housing acquisition is not regarded as a private purchase but as an investment in the national economy.

In Portugal, much real estate is being built; this allows the country to create jobs and bring income to the state treasury in the form of taxes. It is beneficial for the government to develop this investment arearnsince only wealthy people can participate in the program.

To get a residence permit in Portugal, an investor buys:

  1. Luxury property worth at least €500,000.
  2. Properties located worth at least €400,000 in regions with low population density.
  3. Properties worth at least €350,000: for restoration, built more than 30 years ago and in cultural and historical heritage areas.
  4. 30-year-old real estate worth at least €280,000: for restoration, located not only in areas of cultural and historical heritage but also in regions with low population density.
Individual cost calculation of the residence permit in Portugal

What kind of property to buy in Portugal?

Real estate agencies offer fully furnished and equipped houses and apartments with a fine turnkey finish. It is not always new property, but not older than 1993-1995. At the same time, there are options for purchasing real estate under construction.

Restrictions on the purchase of real estate

From 2022, it is not possible to get a Portugal residence permit for the purchase of residential property in large and coastal cities like Lisbon, Cascais, Porto and others.

It is allowed to buy property in the interior regions of the country and the autonomous regions of Madeira and the Azores.

Restrictions do not apply to commercial real estate; it can be bought in any region of Portugal.

Houses in Portugal. One can buy a cosy house in the countryside of Albufeira, Algarve, Lagos or Vilamoura for €500,000 or €600,000. These will be comfortable suburban villas up to 400 sq. m, with 3—4 bedrooms and a landscaped plot of arearnup to 2.5 thousand sq.m. The house will probably have a terrace with a private pool and a parking lot. The properties are usually equipped with solar panels and heating and air conditioning systems.

Apartments in Portugal. For the same €500,000, one can purchase modern apartments in the centre of Lisbon, Porto, Braga, Sintra or Coimbra. Such apartments have 3—5 bedrooms, an arearnof up to 150—160 sq. m. in an elite building, and large panoramic windows. A parking lot will have 3 to 5 available spaces. The apartments are usually located in a closed condominium with a garden, swimming pool and gym.

Luxury real estate in Portugal. If you want to buy property in Portugal at a higher level and a cost far beyond the Golden Visa Program, you will be offered a vast selection of luxury villas and apartments.

CostRegion or cityProperty features
€1,000,000 to €1,500,000Vale do Lobo, Vilamoura, Loulé, Cascais, Estoril, Olhos de Água, Carvoeiro, AlgarveVillas of 200—300 sq. m. with a plot of 2—7 thousand sq. m. 

3—4 bedrooms

A terrace overlooking the sea

5 minutes walk to the sea

A garage, games room, swimming pool
€1,500,000 to €2,000,000Vilamoura, Lagos, Ericeira, AlvorVillas, farms, and estates of 200—300 sq. m. with a landscaped plot of up to 6—7 thousand sq. m.

4—6 bedrooms

A swimming pool, tennis court

A searnor gulf course view
€2,000,000 to €3,000,000Lagos, Obidos, Carvoeiro, Alvor, Sabanas, PalmelaVillas and estates of 300-400 sq. m. with a plot of 6—10 thousand sq. m.

5—6 bedrooms

A swimming pool, tennis court, wine cellar

Luxury finishing, modern communications
€3,000,000+Lagos, Sintra, Sabanas, PalmelaVillas and estates of 700—900 sq. m. with a plot of up to 30 thousand sq. m.

6—7 bedrooms

A swimming pool, tennis court, golf course

A panoramic searnview

Luxury finishing, smart home system

Commercial real estate in Portugal. In large cities like Lisbon and Porto, an investor can buy premises for offices, restaurants and shops with a tenant and a guaranteed rental yield.

Investors buy shares and apartments in large resort complexes in-resort areas, such as Cascais.

Examples of real estate for purchase under the Portugal residence permit program

Residence permit in Portugal for the purchase of real estate: an example of a villa

A three-bedroom villa on the territory of a resort complex in Comporta. The price starts from €1,350,000

Apartments in a residential complex in Funchal, Madeira. The price starts from €525,000

Portugal golden visa properties: an example of apartments

Apartments and villas in a luxury resort complex managed by Marriott International in Albufeira. The price starts from €1,000,000

Cost of real estate ownership in Portugal

Purchase. When you buy a property, you pay 0.8% of its value in the form of stamp duty and 0—7.5% as the transfer tax.

Annual tax. Portugal has a relatively low property tax compared to other European countries. Depending on the region and city, its rate is 0.3—0.8%. The highest tax is in Lisbon and resort towns. It is lower in the countryside.

Sale. Under the terms of the investment program, the owner can sell a property after 5 years of mandatory ownership. If the investor is not a tax resident of Portugal, they do not live in the country for more than 183 days a year; then they pay 28% of the capital gains tax on the difference between the purchase price and the sale price.

Gifting. The gift tax in Portugal is 10%.

Rental. The rental tax in Portugal is relatively high and is levied at 28% of rental income. However, tax non-residents who reside in a country that has signed an agreement on avoiding double taxation with Portugal can receive a preferential rate.

Advantages of buying property in Portugal

  • Getting Portuguese residence permits for an entire family in just 3 to 4 months;
  • it is not necessary to live in the purchased property; it can be used as a “safe haven” or rented out;
  • the investor can apply for citizenship 5 years after obtaining a residence permit;
  • Investor’s children will be able to study in Portuguese universities without a student visa;
  • Portugal residence permit is a personal travel document as its holder no longer needs a visa to travel around the Schengen countries;
  • a residence permit provides access to services of European banks.

If you have already decided on the country where you want to buy real estate and get a residence permit, but you don't know how to choose a property for purchase, how to make a deal, or how to take part in the investment program, don't hesitate to get in touch with our company. We are always happy to help you and provide professional support at all stages of moving to Portugal and adapting to a new place.

Frequently asked questions

How much to invest in real estate to get a residence permit in Portugal?

The Portuguese residence permit program allows the purchase of real estate in one of two scenarios:

  1. For €500,000 or more — residential or commercial real estate.
  2. For €350,000 or more, real estate older than 30 years is of cultural or historical value. It is the investor’s responsibility to restore such a property.

Special conditions apply when making a transaction in a region with a low population density. The minimum contract amount is reduced to €400,000 and €280,000, respectively.

Can a participant of the investment program obtain Portugal citizenship?

The Portuguese Golden Residence Permit Program allows participants to apply for citizenship after 5 years. 

The investment program obliges the participant to renew the residence permit card according to the 2 + 2 + 2 scheme. Accordingly, the investor can apply for citizenship immediately after the expiration of the golden visa.

The procedure for obtaining citizenship includes passing a Portuguese language exam. It is enough to confirm the elementary level of proficiency of the A2 certificate.

Why is the purchase of real estate the most popular investment program option?

Portugal is famous for its resorts and is actively developing the real estate market. At the same time, the cost per square meter here is significantly lower than in other EU countries. For example, you will have to pay €300—600 more per square meter in Spain.

The purchased real estate can be turned into a source of passive income if the owner rents it out. After the established period of ownership, the investor has the right to sell the property and return the investment.

How much does property cost in Portugal?

The Portugal residence permit by investment program allows the purchase of the new or resale property. Therefore, the cost of real estate mainly depends on the region.

A cosy house in Albufeira or the Algarve costs €500,000 or €600,000. A similar amount will be needed to buy modern Lisbon, Porto, or Coimbra apartments.

Villas on the coast with an arearnof ​​​​about 1 thousand square meters cost from €1 million. As a rule, they are fully furnished, located on the coastline and have a large garden plot.

What expenses does an investor bear when buying and maintaining real estate?

When buying property in Portugal, the investor pays the following taxes and fees:

  • 6—8% of the property price as the transfer tax;
  • 0.8% of the property price as the state stamp duty.

When owning real estate, a tax of 0.2—0.8% of the cadastral property value is levied annually. The investor also pays for utilities: electricity, water supply, gas, and communications. Approximate monthly expenses range from €150 for an apartment to €1,000 for a villa.

If investors rent out a property, they are legally taxed at 28% of the rental income.

What are other investment options available under the Portugal Golden Visa Program?

The purchase of real estate is the most demanded but not the only option of the Portugal residence permit program by investment. Therefore, the country’s government has developed 6 more options to choose from. They are aimed at maintaining and developing the economy, science and culture of Portugal:

  1. €500,000 as a business investment to open a new company or increase the capital of an existing one. A prerequisite is the creation or preservation of 5 jobs for 3 years.
  2. €1,500,000 as the purchase of securities of a Portuguese company. Another option is the transfer of capital to a Portuguese bank with an ownership period of at least 5 years.
  3. €500,000 as an investment into research activities that are carried out under Portugal’s scientific and technical program.
  4. €250,000 as an investment in works of art, foundations, and organizations to preserve the Portuguese national heritage.
  5. €500,000 as a purchase of units in Portuguese investment funds.
  6. Registration of a business with the creation of 10 jobs.

The final cost depends on the investor’s family’s composition and considers taxes and state duty. In each case, it is necessary to make an individual calculation.

Real estate in Portugal as a reason to get a residence permit in Europe

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