So you’ve decided to jump ship, sell your home and head to the sunny shores of Portugal to live permanently and embrace the laid back lifestyle that comes with it. Warm temperatures, great house prices and rich culture are drawing people to locations such as the Algarve, but before you begin your property search here’s a quick round up of what you need to know before you move to Portugal:
Look into your ‘right to reside’
Before you make any plans, ensure you have the right to reside in Portugal, especially if you are going to be working while living in the country. Those who are employed in another EU country are entitled to live there and the family members of a worker’s family also have the right to reside in the same country.
Consider where you want to live
Are you looking for warm weather all year round? Do you want to steer clear of the tourist hot spots? Is it important your property is located near a golf course or beach? You should carefully consider and visit the locations you are searching for property in; a specialist such as Portugal Property can help narrow down your property search if you’re unsure where to start.
What type of property are you looking for?
It’s recommended when first moving to Portugal that you rent property before finally settling on the type you prefer and the location. In built up areas an apartment will usually cost between €500-€600 a month, while in rural areas you could discover something for around the €350 mark, but bear in mind this will probably mean the winters will be very cold and the summers very hot in such a cheap property. You could look into buying land and building your own property but the legal side of such a consideration would need to be carefully handled.
Cost of living
The cost of living in Portugal varies. For food and drink, if you shop like a local it can be very cheap (wine can cost as little as €1.50 a bottle) but items such as cars, petrol and furniture are pricey and it might be worth bringing your own over or looking into public transport and hiring a car when you really need one. Compared to the UK most things in Portugal cost less, you just need to refrain from buying luxury imported items and always look for deals.
In Portugal you won’t benefit from the NHS and will have to pay the full amount for prescription medicine, but being a resident you will be entitled to register with a local healthcare centre and receive state healthcare. Therefore it’s important you pay out for health insurance while residing in the country and that you also carry a valid European Health Insurance card.
You need to stay informed
It’s important before moving anywhere abroad that you are aware of the important people to contact in emergencies as well as where to find support. The couple behind movingtoportugal.org have put together a great web directory that details lots of important links to sites dealing with healthcare, insurance and tax.
Take things slowly, don’t rush a property purchase and ensure you have everything in order in the UK before packing your bags and jetting off to enjoy the daily life of sun, sea and sand!