Businessman and entrepreneur Luis Horta e Costa – and other experts who love living in sunny Portugal – heartily advise investors to buy real estate there for various reasons. The time is ripe for reaping the rewards of the entrepreneurial magic and government foresight that saved Portugal’s economy from the Great Recession. In recent years, a resulting real estate boom has experienced wild growth.
Luis Horta e Costa, a longtime player in the real estate investment space, is one of many Portuguese natives who revel in the country’s natural beauty and cosmopolitan highlights, which is why he and his partners chose to found Square View in Lisbon in 2016. The firm is a real estate property developer and asset manager. He says he isn’t alone in his optimism about Portugal’s real estate boom.
“We must understand the size of the market in Portugal and the demand all around,” he says, stressing that the market is large and demand is high.
Luis Horta e Costa and Other Experts Say Their Country Offers the Good Life for Less
Portugal’s attractions include a mild year-round climate, low cost of living, delicious cuisine, excellent safety record, beautiful beaches, and a natural environment. The country offers a high quality of life via infrastructure such as healthcare and transportation, which are widely available and accessible. Portugal is also a safe country with a high level of political stability.
Based on Idealista’s reporting on data from the second quarter of 2022, Lisbon is the most popular, followed by Loulé, Albufeira, Cascais and Porto. Each region offers different advantages.
Luis Horta e Costa sees the popularity of Portugal real estate as a golden opportunity to do what he loves: Develop beautiful properties.
“Each time we can develop something nice, I love to do it,” Horta e Costa says, citing the success of projects Square View has developed in Portugal’s most exciting cities.
Lisbon, Portugal’s capital city and central economic hub, is aesthetically beautiful and filled with historic buildings. Horta e Costa notes that Lisbon’s property prices are increasing, so it isn’t the most suitable place to buy.
Albufeira is often called the gateway to the Algarve, Portugal’s most significant tourist region divided into three areas where one finds an array of geography: interior farmland, beaches, fertile land, lakes, waterfalls, and the Ria Formosa lagoon and dune system. With a long history that began as a fishing village, Albufeira has grown in recent decades thanks to its gorgeous beaches.
Loulé is an ancient town that dates to the Palaeolithic period, after which the Romans and Moors occupied it, resulting in fascinating historic architecture. Loulé is home to one of the largest malls in the Algarve, and beautiful beaches surround it.
Another quaint beach town, Cascais, has witnessed a heavy influx of Europeans and non-EU nationals buying property. With its more relaxed environment and reasonable prices compared to Lisbon, Cascais is becoming a less expensive option. It is by the coast and is filled with stunning architecture, free museums, and carefully maintained parks.
Porto is one of the oldest European centers known as Portugal’s second city and rich in historical and cultural heritage. Porto is a popular tourist destination and a bustling commercial city home to the famous Port wine.
Luis Horta e Costa Describes Various Portuguese Properties and How to Buy Them
Portugal impresses property hunters with its myriad housing choices, including eclectic farmhouses, warehouse-style apartments, beachfront condos, and luxurious villas. For those buyers who aren’t ready to retire, such properties come with high-rental yields, making them an ideal extra income stream. With such a plan, property owners might even pay off the property before they retire to Portugal and live in it.
Another enticement to life in Portugal is the ease of gaining citizenship through Portugal’s Golden Visa program, which allows investors to fast-track their European residency. To take advantage of the program, buyers must purchase and keep ownership of a property for at least five years, after which Portuguese citizenship by naturalization is possible.
To be eligible for the Golden Visa Program, one must buy residential or commercial real estate in designated interior areas or the autonomous islands of Madeira and the Azores. If investing in a rehabilitation project, properties must be worth between €350,000 and €500,000, and if the property is in a designated low-density area, then a 20% discount applies.
As Portugal’s real estate opportunities abound, experts such as Luis Horta e Costa are excited to create fresh takes on Portuguese architecture.
“If you give the market what they want – with a slice of good taste – they love it,” he says. “Our business is about giving people what they don’t know they want. But as soon as they see it, they love it.”