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First timer - buying in the Algarve.

County Limerick...
Level Contributor
7 posts
3 reviews
First timer - buying in the Algarve.

Hi there - Hopefully it's OK to ask this question here. My wife (50) and I (54) are keen to finally take the step of buying a sunny holiday home in the Algarve (although we've never been there, we have friends who highly recommend it, we like Portugal anyway, weather seems reliable and transport links are good). So, it's a long coastline and in an attempt to narrow things down a bit I wondered what location, experts thought might suit us. A first recce is planned for early April and some advice on where to focus our attention would be gratefully received. A few requirements follow:

• Number one requirement is to that we must be able to sit and watch the sunset from own terrace (does this rule out places like Lagos, Albufiera, Olhao, Fuzeta, etc due to coastline facing South East?)

• Reasonable sea view (not a distant glimpse).

• Quiet area but within walking distance to good selection of shops, bars and restaurants (for when the mood takes us). (Does this rule out Faro, Olhao, etc?)

• Prefer to avoid any areas that attract noisy groups of holiday makers although we primarily expect to use it for a winter retreat (from Ireland). How does Albufiera rate in this respect?

• New or modern 2 bed apartment with lots of light and space.

• Budget of €250,000 ....and we dont play golf! :-)

• In a few years we expect to retire and to spend several months at a time there – No plans to rent it out.

So far my internet trawling seems to rule out Vilamoura (price) but shows good options in East Algarve. There appears to be good value in Faro but some reviews seem to suggest it might be a bit boring for when we'd like to stroll along a sea side promenade at night time. Tavira looks like a nice mix of old town feel and better property prices but is maybe a bit too sleepy..?

Many thanks - Kev

Edited: 20 February 2018, 06:07
Albufeira, Portugal
Destination Expert
for Algarve, Faro, Portugal
Level Contributor
57,759 posts
41 reviews
1. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

"here appears to be good value in Faro but some reviews seem to suggest it might be a bit boring for when we'd like to stroll along a sea side promenade at night time."

Since Faro is several miles from the open sea there is no promenade.

Vilamoura is one of the most expensive areas in the region.

"Prefer to avoid any areas that attract noisy groups of holiday makers "

Every town on the coast has noisy people in summer but even where I live in Albufeira (just 1km from the seafront) it's quiet. Albufeira does not have a 'promenade' either.

"Tavira looks like a nice mix of old town feel and better property prices but is maybe a bit too sleepy..?"

Tavira is a town of 26,000 residents, so always busy with people going about their business not just tourists, but again it is not on the coast. Please do look more closely at a map!!

As this is not really a travel question, this thread will probably soon be locked. I suggest you find the many ex-pat forums eg www.albufeira.com/forum where residents and regular visitors who own property here are happy to offer relocation advice. Particularly the legal aspects, which can be daunting at first.

Dorset
Level Contributor
2,006 posts
46 reviews
2. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

Suggest you first take a holiday on the Algarve before taking such a big step of purchasing a property. Look on Rightmove Overseas and read online papers like The Algarve Resident and Portugal News. As Cubsur says, this a travel forum and this post could easily get deleted by TA moderators.

County Limerick...
Level Contributor
7 posts
3 reviews
3. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

Thanks for the replies guys - All good suggestions and our research continues.

Carvoeiro, Portugal
Level Contributor
2,756 posts
88 reviews
4. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

You really need to go and spend time in the different areas. We were convinced we wanted to buy in Alvor ended up buying in carvoeiro and we had never been there before but just fell in love with the area the moment we drove there. You will need z good local lawyer and give them power of attorney that way they can handle the purchase without you having to be there. Once you agree on a property you have to pay a non refundable deposit. If you pull out you loose the deposit if the seller pulls out they have to pay back the deposit plus some! The property stays on yhd market until the deposit is paid. We were in a non chain and it all still took 3 months to complete. Also research fees znd taxes on buying a property. Good kuck

Somerset, United...
Level Contributor
1,104 posts
23 reviews
5. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

I would like others agree you should take a hol8day and a few trips at different times of the year in different resorts.

Your budget is in the right area for you want.

A friend showed us two apartments in Luz with the same views that villas worth over a million euros have.

Personally the further west the better.

Glasgow, United...
Level Contributor
1,116 posts
243 reviews
6. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

Look at and post on Portugal british expats . com. I would say in Eastern Algarve there aren’t many suitable properties with such a view as you request. The ria Formosa barrier islands get in the way.

Dorset
Level Contributor
2,006 posts
46 reviews
7. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

Should add to my post 2, stay clear of condominiums with shared pools, grounds, roadways etc , as lovely as they appear quite often there are problems with other owners not paying their contributions towards the upkeep. I know, having had such an experience! Also, on a golf course, had to pay for golfing rights and when that went into administration it was very bad news! Better to buy a one-off apartment or house where you don’t have unforeseen overheads, like community charge, maintenance agreements etc. Its full of pitfalls and you really should not undertake property purchase until you’ve looked at the pros and cons. It isn’t for everybody!

East Anglia, United...
Level Contributor
3,012 posts
105 reviews
8. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

Apart from the obvious already stated, be aware that many of the smaller, quieter places practically close down for winter. What you find in April will be a completely different place in July and it could be a ghost town in January.

After we had enjoyed many holidays in different places we decided to buy and then still spent over two years, staying in many locations both East and West, at all different times of the year, when we found what we thought was the right place for us, we returned six times over 12 months before purchasing. The right location was far more important to us than the 'bricks and mortar'. The most beautiful of apartments in the wrong place is no fun.

Manila, Philippines
Level Contributor
1,526 posts
TripAdvisor Staff  
9. Re: First timer - buying in the Algarve.

Hi KDIreland2015,

We have closed this topic, as it does not meet our Guidelines.

Some common relocation/real-estate topics or questions that are not permitted under our guidelines:

Topic contains no travel related information

Real Estate and similar questions

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