What you need to know about renting a home in Portugal - Laws and regulations

Renting in Portugal 

Portugal has a very tens property market and in certain areas it can be both tricky an expensive. Especially Lisboan, Porto and the Algarve are hot markets for renting in Portugal.

That being said, it it also possible to find very affordable property's and apartments to rent if you are open to living a little bit outside the main areas.

If you are looking to rent in Portugal you should first of all decide where it is you want to live, how much you can afford to pay in rent and what kind of standard your are expecting.

The standard of Portuguese properties varias a lot and the better standard you want, the more you must be prepared to pay for renting a house or apartment. 

Where to rent in Portugal

If you wish to live in a city or town you are most likely to end up in an Apartment or smaler townhouse. If you on the other hand want to rent a house i Portugal, you will most likely be looking to the outskirts or in smaller towns and villages. 

How much is rent i Portugal? 

Portugal has for many years been a hotspot for foreigners from all over the world and this has seen the prices payed for rent increase a lot over the years. As for how much you have to pay in rent, it comes down to location, number of bedrooms and general standard of the property. 

If you are looking at renting in Lisbon you are likely to pay around €15 a m2 on average. But you can also find properties costing as little as €8 ot as much as several hundres euros. 

For Porto you are likely to pay on average €11 a m2. 

For the region of the Algarve prices are about the same as you will find in Lisboa. But again it all depends on location, size and standard. In popular locations like Lagos, Portimao, Albufeira and Tavira a 2 bedroom apartment is likely to cost you from €650 to €1.000 if you are in city center. 

Outside the citys in smaller villages you can expect to pay about €400 to €500 for the same size. 

If you are looking to rent av villa with 3+ bedrooms the prices are likely to be in the region of €2.000 to €4.500.

For the love of great food in Portugal

Deposit when renting in Porugal and the Algarve 

Paying a deposit when renting in portuagl is compeltly normal. The avrage deposit is 1-2 months rent, but often it will be a case of paying first and last rent, plus one month deposit. 

As for the security and interest of the deposit many landlords will not put the money in a bank account as it cost money and they are will have to pay tax on the deposit. It sounds a bit strange, but that is Portugal for you.

Very often the deposit will simply be left with the estate agent. You will get a receipt for your deposit, but it can be a good idea to not pay the second to last rent when moving out of the property.

Is it hard to find rental properties in Portugal?

Yes and no. It all depends on where you are looking to rent and how much you are willing to pay. Lisboa, Porto and the Algarve are the three most expensive locations and it can be hard to find a property with good standers for the average price pr m2. 

One of the biggest problems when renting in Lisbon, Porto and the Algarve is finding logo term rentals. Many property owners choose to only rent ot "long term" for the winter periode, as they can charge a lot higher rent doring the summer months when they rent out by the week. 

A 3 bedroom in the Algarve might be €800 a month in winter and as much as €800 a week in summer. The Portuguese government have passed several laws in resent years to combat the problem, but it is still a big problem in areas with a lot of tourist. 

If you are happy to rent outside city center you are much more likely to find long term rentals at an affordable price. But to ber clear, when we say outside of city centers, we are talking as little as 10 minutes by car from city center.

Renting property in the countryside

Portugal is best know for its wonderful cost line, but you should also have a look more innland. Portugal have many smaler, wounderfull villages in the hills where the prices for renting is much, much lower then the rent people pay in city center. 

Before considering renting in the country side you should know that many of the properties you will find for long term renting will have a poorer standard them in city center. You are also likely to have to buy a car as public transport in rural areas can be a challenge. 

Furnished or un-furnished 

When renting in Portugal and the Algarve you are likely to find that about 50% of the properties fully or at least partly furnished. 

For long term rentals you will find that the number of fully furnished property's might be a bit less, but they will most likely have have a full kitchen and washing machine . A dryer is however not usual in in the Algarve as the cost has over 300 days of sunshine.

Utility's when renting in Portugal

Unless you are renting just a room or a smaler part of a bigger house, you must expect that utility's are not included in the monthly rent. Internet and TV might be, but electricity and water will have to be paid by you the tenant.

The cost of utility's vary a lot and in the end it is all up to yourself. But for a 3 bedroom apartment with a family of four, you are likely to pay around €100-150 in electricity and €30-35 for water.every month.

Insurance when renting in Portugal and the Algarve 

It is the landlord/owner of the properties responsibility to pay insurance for the property, but you should always have insurance for the loos interior and personell belongings.

Mantineans and repairs when for rental properties

For the most part all Mantineans of the property will be the owners responsibility. As far as repairs go, it depends on why it needs repairing. If you break a window it is naturally you that have to pay, but if the door locks stop working it falls on the owner.

Who is responsible for what should be covered in your rental agreement. The rental agreement should also mention the expected time the owner has to fix things. 

Will I get a signed rental agreement? 

When renting a property anywhere in Portugal, you should always ask for a rental agreement. And insure that the agreement is registered with the local camera. This means the landlord will have to pay tax on the rental income, so naturally many will try to avoid this, but for your own safety you should insist. 

If not, you should consider running the contract by a solicitor to ensure that you are safe doring the hole rental periode. 

How to find rental properties in Portugal and the Algarve 

When looking for property's to rent in Portugal there are several websites you can have a look at, however we always recommend talking to local estate agents in the area you are looking to rent in.

The local agents know the market better than anyone and often they will have properties for rent that are not registered online. Working with several local agents can drastically increase your chanses of finding rental properties at the best possible price. 

Is it cheaper to rent or buy in Portugal?

If your looking to live in Portugal for a longer time, buying a property will be cheaper in the long run. The property market in Portugal is very stable and it has increased year on year for a long time. For shorter stays renting is properly your best option.