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House Inspection in Portugal

If you’re thinking of buying a property in Portugal, it’s likely that you’ll come across several used homes for sale. Buying second-hand properties is a very popular option for most buyers, since these make up the largest portion of the Portuguese real estate market. This is why a house inspection is extremely important – it serves as a means for you to see if you’re getting a good deal or not, and to better figure out the property’s issues. Come find out more!

Frederik Pohl, CEO
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How do I arrange a house inspection in Portugal?

The first important step in this process is to entrust your real estate project to a local specialist. When you partner up with Pearls of Portugal, you can be sure that the buyer’s agent appointed to you has extensive knowledge and experience in the Portuguese real estate field, plus access to a powerful network of contacts – including house inspection experts.

Next, you should definitely do everything in your power to find the real condition of the property and the potential costs of renovation or refurbishment before the sale is complete. No one likes to find themselves in the middle of a renovation process with structural problems or other unforeseen problems that require them to spend extra money. A thorough house inspection can make you avoid this.

But what is a technical inspection or survey?

A house inspection is a check-up of the property by a specialist – it’s a technical diagnosis that provides an in-depth understanding of the condition of every element of the property – such as the ceiling, walls, doors, pipes, etc. It is meant to identify any possible problem in the property and its degree of damage.

In case you’re buying the property, after the  inspection is done, you can use the results to argue the sale price, since you’ll have to fix the issues found. Be aware that the owners might “counter-attack” and order an evaluation of their own.

The phases of a house inspection
  • Visual Inspection – The expert will meet with you at the arranged time in order to conduct the inspection, which will last about three hours for a typical family home.
  • Report – After the inspection, the technician will write and send you the report, which is submitted in a simple and uncomplicated format. It includes a general description of the condition of the property’s components and a more detailed explanation of any anomalies, plus recommendations on how to solve the issues at hand. Most experts also include pictures and, sometimes, drawings.
  • Post-Inspection Services – After the report is handed to you, you can always contact the Inspector to clarify any issues portrayed on the report, or to ask any questions you may have regarding the inspection process and the issues found.
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What is the purpose of a house inspection?

  • Technical verification of the state of the property: as already mentioned, this consists of a survey of all the pathologies of the property, carried out by a specialist;
  • Identifying problems: when there are suspicions or recurring problems in a home, a technical inspection is the quickest way to discover the cause and make the necessary corrections as soon as possible;
  • Getting an accurate idea of the cost of a property and the investment that needs to be made;
  • Promoting transparency and increasing levels of trust between seller and buyer;
  • To make sure your house is safe for renting out;
  • Renovation work on a building with several units and usually a condominium management entity, facilitating trust and communication between all parties involved;
  • Clarifying questions of a municipal nature (for example, whether or not an outbuilding or other area of the property can be legalized).
How often should a property be inspected?

There is no law pertaining to how often you should order a house inspection – it is entirely dependent on the owner, who should do their best to maintain their property’s condition, especially when it is rented out to someone. However, more often than not, people tend to avoid doing house inspections, since it costs money and can be uncomfortable (a stranger coming to your house). This is why technical inspections are mostly done when the property is being sold to someone else.

Nevertheless, the right thing to do is definitely to order periodic inspections, in order to avoid existing problems getting worse – which results in more expensive, more complicated solutions.

The importance of a specialized inspection

It is also important to note that there are different degrees of depth and different types of technical inspections. There are certain cases for which a specialized inspection is necessary. For example, wooden houses require a wood specialist that can correctly access the state of the structures and the possible existence of termites.

Luckily, when you work with Pearls of Portugal, our expert partners can give you a technical opinion on what type/s of inspection your property needs.

What types of property inspections are there?

Inspections can be carried out on floors, walls, pipes, the ceiling (especially in the case of last floor apartment), the ventilation of the property or its electrical circuits. It depends on the house’s characteristics

How much can a home inspection cost?

There is no certain answer, since this also heavily depends on the house’s particularities, such as its age, dimensions, amount of anomalies, type of intervention required, if it has, for example, a balcony, etc. The costs can vary significantly. But, for reference purposes, you can consider a cost of 400€ per 100 square meters. 

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