Portuguese real estate booms amongst foreign buyers

Portuguese real estate booms amongst foreign buyers

Portugal was the second country whose real estate offer was most sought after by foreign buyers in August, only behind the USA, according to recent data from overseas property portal themovechannel.com.
Said the portal, enquiries for Portuguese real estate surged 32% in August 2014, making the country the second most popular country on the portal for the first time.
Further data showed that “the Algarve and Lisbon continue to drive activity, but Portugal’s improvement was broad, as buyer interest spread across the country”.
Costa Verde, a tourist and coastal region of northwest Portugal, led the increase with enquiries soaring 500% month-on-month, followed by Braga (400%), Porto (380%), Costa de Prata (340%), Aveiro (200%), Guardia (100%), Madeira (50%), the Algarve (35%) and Leiria (16%).
In July, Portugal had already made it onto the portal’s podium behind the USA and Spain.
Luís Lima, president of APEMIP (the national real estate professionals’ association), said in an opinion piece for SOL newspaper that Portugal’s growth is a contrast to lower demand in popular real estate countries such as France.
Lima says this data shows that even French property buyers are increasingly seeking second and holiday homes in Western Europe such as Portugal and Spain.
“The increasing interest of the French for our real estate has been visible for a long time among us,” the president said.
“It is partly prompted by Portugal’s tax regime for non-habitual residents, which attracts liberal professionals who can carry out their activities in any part of the world as long as they have access to modern information technologies, as well as retired citizens,” he added.
The APEMIP president had already told the Resident that 2014 has been a “very positive year” for the real estate sector.
“There has been an increase in the number of property sales for four consecutive quarters, which means that if the calendar year were from June 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014, this would have been the year of the sector’s recovery,” said Luís Lima.
In the first half of the year, 49,000 properties were sold and hopes are that the number will increase significantly in the second semester, compared to last year when the annual total was 96,000.
On a general level, the number of foreigners buy­ing property in Portugal increased by 90% between April and June 2014, revealed APEMIP. The Algarve alone accounted for 37% of all foreign property investment in the country. A total of 2,424 homes were purchased by foreigners in the region, with the UK (964), France (504) and China (180) as the top buyers.
“We have gone through a very difficult period these past few years, which led real estate professionals to join forces in order to overcome the crisis,” he said, stressing that 2014’s positive results bring the sector renewed hope.