Foreigner buyers account for 25% of Portugal’s property sales in 2017

Portugal’s property market continued to boom among foreigner buyers in 2017. Data shows that a quarter of the homes that were for sale were sold to foreign buyers last year. Most of them were either French or Brazilian though there were also many Brits and Chinese choosing Portugal to purchase a home.

The announcement was made by Luís Lima, president of Portugal’s real estate agency (APEMIP), in an interview with Diário de Notícias newspaper.

He revealed that 152,000 properties were sold last year, a 25% to 30% increase compared to last year. And this is only taking into account the number of properties sold through realtors.

“It is an increase that we expected and which allows us to forecast that real estate will continue growing this year,” he told the paper.

A recent study found that house prices are expected to grow 6% a year throughout the next five years (click here) but not even the rising prices are forecast to keep foreign investors from seeking the country’s good weather, safety, and high life quality.

However, Lima says the challenge now is to make sure that properties do not become unaffordable for Portugal’s middle-class.

For example, the average price per square metre in Lisbon last December was set at €2,796, a 36.92% increase on the same month the year before.

The prices also increased 23.67% in Porto and 18% in Faro.

“In Lisbon, the price per square metre could even surpass €7.000. There would still be foreigners who would pay,” Lima told DN, urging the state to come up with housing designed especially for middle-class families so that they won’t be forced to move away.

As Lima explains: “These foreigners are willing to pay more than what an average Portuguese family can”.

He adds that Brazilians are the foreigners who are “willing to pay more”.

“I was just in Rio and they want to leave.

Mariah Rangel, a 62-year-old who just sold her house in Paris to move to Cascais, told DN: “Many are leaving, most due to safety reasons. Currently, they can’t walk the streets. I know many families choosing Cascais and Lisbon to live”.

She explained how she used 65% of the money she made from selling her 75sqm property in Paris to purchase a 250sqm apartment in Cascais.

“And I was still able to save 35% of what I made,” she said.

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