The final installment of the IPBN's Algarve Living Series took a closer look at buying and/or renting a property in the Algarve with special attention paid to the particulars of connectivity in the areas of working, traveling, and getting around. Keynote speakers were experts in the communities of Portimão, Quinta dos Vales, Loulé, Quinta do Lago, and Sagres.
Moderated by Carolyn McKeown, IPBN Algarve committee member and owner of Shebang Events and PR Management, Chitra Stern, CEO Martinhal Group & United Lisbon International School, João Richard Costa, Director of Marketing & Sales of Ombria Resort, Michael Stock, Manager of Quinta dos Vales & Carvoeira Gardens, and Luis Teixeira da Silva, Director of Algarve Senior Living & Luz Living each had key tips to share with attendees interested in moving to Portugal's southernmost region.
From living on a vineyard with a sea view and reaping the benefits of the land in the form of a self-made barrel of your own vintage, as is the living model at Srock's Carvoeira Gardens, a project recently opened to longer-term and full-time residents at Quinta dos Vales, to enjoying Stern's long-term rentals and holiday stays at the luxurious family-friendly Martinhal Resort and Quinta do Lago, there is plenty to enjoy. Families are choosing to live in places that offer international schools, natural beauty, and access to an international airport. Stern says buy-to-let is still popular at 3%, but buy-to-live is gaining traction.
Costa described Ombria Resorts as being well-integrated into the local landscape whose core principle is sustainability in a year-round model. Within the resort is a golf course, a hotel, and branded one and two-bedroom apartment residents are for sale, run by Viceroy Hotels and Resorts, which specializes in running five-star hotels. These residences have access to the amenities of the resort, including an organic farm, various restaurants, and get an income from renting their apartments out with a 5% guarantee by the resort. The buy-to-live model is also available in private villas, all of which have the same access to amenities of the resort.
Teixeira da Silva recommends starting with a winter rental to get your feet wet in the region. His 200+ properties located all over the region can allow potential buyers to experience a variety of areas of the Algarve in a variety of sizes. His newest project, Luz Living, is intended to be an exclusive retirement community within a local community, giving balance to those who decide to spend their golden years in the Algarve.
When it comes to investment properties, buying sooner rather than later is the key to getting the best deal. Ombria Resorts, for example, has sold 40% of its residences and the hotel is set to open in about a year and a half, according to Costa. Some buyers have not yet even set foot on the grounds due to COVID but have the wheels already turning. Teixeira da Silva agrees that timing is absolutely everything when making a decision. For long-term rentals, it's a good idea to book a property 6 months in advance.
Stern says that taking a flight to buy a property is a valid reason for travel and she has provided letters to that effect allowing for some travel from abroad whose borders aren't closed to Portugal due to the pandemic. Her advice before buying is to research private hospitals nearby, proximity to schools, comfort, convenience, and facilities including restaurants.
Speakers fielded questions about health and wellness, particularly in regards to access to Portugal's excellent healthcare facilities, tolerance, answers to retirement needs, increased demand in EU citizenship post-Brexit, and competition. All in all, the Algarve offers them all in spades alongside tax incentives and a fantastic climate. Six months spent in Portugal out of every year is all it takes to take advantage of this regime, and, if you so choose, all of these sites can make a residency application process much more pleasant as you gather together the necessary paperwork.
Get more tips by watching the above video and stay tuned for future webinars on how best to enjoy the Algarve as more than a vacation spot— as a home.