More Brazilians are buying property, but the French are still the top investors

Who are the top international investors in the Portuguese real estate market?
12 March 2018,

The French are still top of the list for the nationality which invests the most in the Portuguese property market, making up 29% of the total. Even so, Brazilian investment keeps growing and already accounts for 19% of property purchases by non-Portuguese. In Lisbon and Porto, Brazilians even outnumber the French, with 24% and 27% in each of those cities, respectively.

French citizens stay on top as the foreigners who invest most, but investment by Brazilians is growing the most in the country, according to the Portuguese Real Estate Professionals and Brokers Association (Associação dos Profissionais e Empresas de Mediação Imobiliária de Portugal or APEMIP). The top five also includes the English (11%), Chinese (9%) and Angolans (7.5%). It’s also worth pointing out that a full 20% of the houses sold in Portugal end up in foreign hands.

 “For three years now, I’ve been calling attention to the potential that Brazilian investors can bring to the Portuguese real estate market. Not only has this been exacerbated by the political, social and economic instability in Brazil, but also by Donald Trump’s election in the US. That has driven many Brazilians who traditionally invested in Florida start looking for safer alternatives, such as the Portuguese market,” says Luís Lima, President of the APEMIP. He also asserts that this growing trend will continue this year.

More Brazilians but fewer Chinese

For Luís Lima, it’s now necessary to try to stop the collapse of Chinese investment. “The Chinese still make up 9% of the total sales to foreigners, but we cannot stress enough the shocking drop in these investments for the national outlook,” he said in a statement. “It is necessary that the procedures of the Golden Residence Permit Programme (Autorização de Residência para Atividades de Investimento or ARI), which authorises the residency permits of investors, are regulated quickly to avoid possible negative impact and distrust due to delays in the issue and renewal of gold visas which are currently making foreign citizens suffer,” he added.

Lisbon, Porto and the Algarve are still the most coveted areas for international investors who want to put their money into the Portuguese residential real estate sector. That said, demand will begin to expand to other areas of the country. “There are more and more investors interested in buying a house away from the beaten track,” recounts the APEMIP’s President.

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