Property in the Algarve

Was in the bank today and chatting to the manager thoughts turned to the property market.

It\’s basically dead. He\’s completed 3 transactions so far this year: as opposed to his normal 3 or 4 a month. ERA and Remax, the two big estate agent chains, have closed at least half their places. The banks have repossessions coming out of their ears.

The real problem is finance. This bank, a national one, is looking for 60-75% deposits. Essentially, not even worth trying to aim for. Either you\’re a cash buyer who downgrades a little or you don\’t bother.

I\’ve seen one place, not quite in the golden triangle, but close to it. In the Vilamoura/Boliqueme area at least. Down from 950,000 asking to €299,000 just to get it away. 4 bed farmhouse on decent sized garden (English country garden size, 1/2 acre). The only thing even slightly odd about the place is that water is from a borehole, not mains. But that can be an advantage if you actually want to water your garden.

If you\’ve ever thought about wanting a holiday place, or even something a bit more than that, down here in the Algarve then now is a really good time to be looking. If you\’re a cash buyer that is.

Some quite astonishing deals out there from pressed sellers. Haven\’t really bothered to look at flats but wouldn\’t be at all surprised to find 1 bedders in town going to €40k or a little more.

If there actually is anyone in the market I\’m sure we could come to some sort of a deal over our (actually, my mate) doing a search around the bargain bins for you.

Ruins in the country at €20 k (but that\’s deep country), flats in town at €40k and above, entire villas (no, not just townhouses, proper villas) near the sea and the golf at €250k and up seems possible with a lot of digging around to see who really has to sell.

Just through having been here a long time we know the builders (indeed, my mate is one), maintenance people etc. Even, though whisper this quietly, who to bribe and how much to get planning on the swimming pool you want and all that.

Hmm. Perhaps this is something that should be thought about a little more? Given that we do in fact have all the knowledge to be property buyers for people?

If, that is, there is anyone actually looking for property down here. Which is rather the point of this post. Halloo?

11 thoughts on “Property in the Algarve”

  1. Thanks, I’m at least curious now. Two questions:
    1. How much property tax / council tax does one pay there?
    2. Is there a Portuguese equivalent of RightMove, a nationwide search engine for property? Google only points me to individual estate agencies.

  2. Hello,

    Yes. The in-laws are looking in that area. We were searching the web when I went round there for dinner this evening. They just sold their house and are looking to retire to the sun. Can’t go to Spain as planned because of some new law that means you can’t use their health service.

    Email me.


  3. I’m hoping the same thing will happen in Dorset, Hampshire, Sussex or Suffolk. Failing which, Galloway, Perthshire or East Lothian. But it must magically leave my own financial position intact.

  4. Still a way to go then price wise. A friend of mine has just bought 60 new flats in a small town just outside Dublin for e600k. There is some legal mess to clean up and a similar amount in back taxes to pay, but that is an outright steel. They would have fetched 300k each in the boom, if not more and will still rent easily for reasonable money.

    Good time to be cashed up.

  5. What are the chances of buying a property and then finding that the developer never actually had planning permission and the local cooncil sends in the bulldozers?

    Or does that happen only in Spain?

    Tim adds: Pretty much zero. There are loads of illegal properties, but if you know what you’re looking for on the property records then you can spot them.

    That’s the sort of knowledge we’re thinking might be saleable really….for we also know how to legalise them.

  6. @dearieme, I think you’ll find that Galloway never had stupid house prices in the first place, so they haven’t fallen anywhere near as much. Nor will they.

  7. “That’s the sort of knowledge we’re thinking might be saleable really….for we also know how to legalise them.”

    If the government doesn’t move the goalposts.

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