Selling a Property in Portugal

A general overview of the process and points to bear in mind when selling a house, apartment or land in Portugal...

The process and laws for selling a property in Portugal are very similar to those for buying a property.

Preparing for the Sale

The seller must make sure all taxes regarding the property are paid for. Not paying these tax obligations may mean that the property can be the object of a public auction in order to satisfy the debt. All debts regarding the property must also be settled.

Once a buyer has been found and a sale agreed, the seller should also arrange to pay in full and then cancel utility services such as the electricity, gas, water, insurance and telephone.

Engage an estate agent

Although there is an extra fee for it, it is often best to use the services of a government-licensed real estate agent to safeguard against any disputes, comebacks or irregularities that could arise during the process.

One of the benefits of using a government-approved estate agent is that they usually have a large database of house-hunters and can organise visits (Marcações e Visitas) for potential buyers.

Engage a property solicitor

The best way to make sure all legal requirements are met is to engage the services of a property solicitor to act in the sale. The solicitor will deal with aspects such as drawing up a Procuração Publica which is signed in the Notary Office and registered. This document means that a legal representative has been authorised to deal with the sale on behalf of the client. Some international legal firms and estate agents can draw up this document in Portuguese outside Portugal, at a Portuguese consulate or in a public notary office in a foreign country, providing the document is translated and bears both the notary seal and apostil.

Determine the market price

The easiest way to determine what the property is worth is worth is by engaging the services of an evaluation agent (Avaliador) and a surveyor (Vistoriador). An estate agent (Agente Imobiliaríos) will usually arrange this service (Avaliação Imóveis) for the client.

The price in Portugal will be determined by various factors such as: the type of property, (for example apartment or detached (Apartamento o Vivenda/Moradia); its size (Area Útil) and number of bedrooms; the facilities it has (such as a pool, off-street parking, garden); its location according to district (Distrito), urban neighbourhood (Concelho) and parish (Freguesia).

Useful Terms

Prédio Apartment block made up of various floors
Andar Apartment floor
Assoalhada Room (2 assoalhada = 2 rooms, probably living room and bedroom)
Estudio Also known as a T0 – a one-room studio flat
Moradia/Vivenda House
T1 / T2 Bedrooms

Further Information

Information provided by MC&A - Attorneys at Law Av. da Liberdade, 262 - 4º Esq, 1250-149 Lisbon, Portugal Tel: +351 21 356 99 30, Fax: +351 21 356 99 39 Website / email