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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking for info from anyone who has actually done it, no rumor or conjecture.
Every country seems to have its unique pitfalls and challenges with property buying.

Lets say I find a flat for $40K. I decide I want to buy it.

What comes next and what fees/taxes will be incurred above the $40k to transfer ownership and clear title to me?

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the help.
Unfortunately, the internet is a TERRIBLE tool for certain types of research, when the content yeilded by any given Google search is shallow-knowledge information (and even ridiculously bad "paid content" that exists solely for the sake of search engines but offers no actionable insight)

I am hoping to talk to people who have actual real world knowledge, not fake "I Can Google" internet pretend knowledge which, in situations like this, isn't worth much. This is why I noted I was interested in hearing from people who have actually done it, not just people who Googled something.
 

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As someone who has just purchased a house here in Portugal in the last 6 weeks, I can say i did review the websites listed, and found them helpful:). I did not, however, purchase a home for the amount you are requesting, so I do not know the exact fees and taxes you will pay. Fees and taxes will be based on where you buy, cost of the house, notary and lawyer fees. Our fees and taxes were approximately 3% of house sale price, in our case. The websites explain how taxes are percentages, based on value of property, not house sale price. So, you would need to find out from seller or real estate agent the exact fees, to be sure of numbers.
 

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I'd also agree it's a bit of an open ended question but I'll give it a go.

Firstly, I'll note that you're profile shows you as originally from the USA so I'll assume that's the passport you hold and point out that will mean you'll have very different residency/visa issues to most of us here but as we're talking about buying property and not residency, I'll stick to that for now and I'll start by saying Government requirements for most things here seem to vary from area to area and often from individual civil servant to individual civil servant.

The first thing you need is your Fiscal number and you get that by visiting a Fiscal Office. I've never tried to get a FN for an American passport holder but would assume it's the same for them as it is for anyone else and in my area, all you need to show is your passport and some kind of utility bill or similar from your previous address and nothing more. - It should be noted however that some areas ask to see the rental contract of where you're currently staying but this does not happen in my area and (IMO) they're wrong to ask for that because if nothing else, some people who first enter the country stay in hotels, B&Bs or motorhomes etc. The process takes about 15 minutes per person and costs about €15 or so.

You now have the paperwork to buy your property...... once you find the place you like, you need to visit a GOOD lawyer and have him explain all the other costs because they will vary depending on value of property, his own personal fees, other fees such as notary and whether or not there are any outstanding taxes etc.

All that said, if you're looking at buying an apartment for something like €40k without outstanding taxes etc then your total extra cost will be fairly negligible but you'll need to get the exact quote from the lawyer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the help all.
I should have mentioned that I am a US/EU dual national so I would be buying as an EU citizen.

One thing I noticed in shopping for properties in different countries is that the bureaucratic-taxation in some places can be immense (Italy, for example, where it can approach 10%-20% the value of the property itself) which is very alien to someone from the US where closing costs are fairly negligible. I'm just trying to get my bearings on buying in Portugal.

Having experienced a few places in the EU, I just fell in love with Portugal, even more than Italy, and have decided its the place for me. The fact its so affordable is just a huge bonus :D
 

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I'd suggest you ask YOUR lawyer about exact costs rather than the seller or the estate agent simply because the latter might lie because they have an axe to grind.

Additional costs can be expensive for high priced properties and I think someone buying a house for €170k in my area will be paying something like €8k in additional costs but a property valued at €40k isn't going to cost a heck of a lot in additional fees.

The trick is to use a lawyer who speaks good English and have him give you an exact figure before you start.
 

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If holding a U.S. Passport, you will need either an address in the EU, we used our daughters in the UK, or you give the lawyer in Portugal that you hire for house purchase, power of attorney, to obtain fiscal number. We were told you cannot obtain a fiscal number with a non EU address :(. Also obtaining residency is another big difference for non EU, such as Americans, when researching, follow links for non EU members. We obtained our residency cards last week. :).
 

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If holding a U.S. Passport, you will need either an address in the EU, we used our daughters in the UK, or you give the lawyer in Portugal that you hire for house purchase, power of attorney, to obtain fiscal number. We were told you cannot obtain a fiscal number with a non EU address :(. Also obtaining residency is another big difference for non EU, such as Americans, when researching, follow links for non EU members. We obtained our residency cards last week. :).
Lots of good advice there. :)

As for the address: Some areas seem to ask for a written contract for rental accommodation, some don't ask for anything and some just ask for for an address of some kind....... I seem to remember someone here said the address they provided was something like 3rd caravan on the left etc. - So I guess you pays your money and you take your choice.

Grammymissy: - How long did it take for you to get your residency and is it permanent please?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
While I am unaware of the particulars, obtaining a short term lease for residency purposes would be no problem. I'm definitely a highly selective buyer and tend to wait for opportunities- rather than going to the market with hat in hand and seeing what it offers me- so there's a good chance I'll be renting before buying anyway.

As far as the particulars of establishing PT residency with an Italian passport, that is something I'll definitely have to figure out. :)
 

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As US only passport holders, we had to apply for a VISA to move here, good for 4 months, then applied for a 1 year temporary residency upon arrival, this took 2 weeks. We can then follow the 1 year residency with 2 two year residency permits, and after 5 years we can then take the language test, and if we pass, we can apply for permanent residency. If we do not take the test and pass, we can then get 5 year residency permits for additional years here. Permanent residency for non EU, as of current regulations, only comes with passing of language test, and test cannot be taken for Five years, is our understanding.
 

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If you've got an Italian passport, it'll be a doddle.

All you do is go to the local Camara, show them your passport and they should issue you a 5 year residencia.

Some might ask you if you are financially secure and some might ask you to prove that but they have no right to ask those questions because any EU citizen has the right to reside anywhere in the EU.
 

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A-Z

Hi Out,

The heading of your post is slightly misleading 'an A-Z to buying property in Portugal', vs. the text, which asks for some factual examples to a specific scenario. The links I posted provide: comprehensive, consistent and accurate information for buyers. Effectively an A-Z for buying a property in Portugal.

On re-reading the text of your post it differs somewhat from the very broad and holistic title. Inasmuch as you have a couple of specific questions on a single scenario:

You have $40K (~36K euros) to spend on a flat, and you simply want to know how much to budget for fees. Plus the sequence of events that lead up to these fees.

Answer:
Get a NIF
Find a good lawyer (English speaking, not connected to the estate agent or seller)
Agree the price.
A rule of thumb is to set aside a budget of between 3% - 10%, best to worst case scenarios, for fees, and you should be fine. (factual examples from grammymissy, = 3%, TM's example = 5%, our experience = 6%).

I hope this is more helpful.
 
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