Habitation Permit

The habitation permit is a document that proves that a certain property is habitable because it meets all the legal conditions required for such. This license is municipal in nature, so without an inspection by the ‘Câmara Municipal’ (City Council), it is impossible to obtain it.

This document determines, therefore, that the property can be used, whether for housing or non-housing purposes (such as commerce, services or industry).

Frederik Pohl, CEO

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What distinguishes Habitation Permit from a Habitation License?  

The habitation license and the utilization license have different purposes. While the former attests to the habitability of the property, the latter defines the type of use permitted, whether for housing or non-housing purposes (commerce, services or industry).

A license for the use of buildings or autonomous fractions is also issued by the respective municipality where the property is located, and the request can be made in person, at the ‘Câmara Municipal’ services, or online, a functionality that is already available in some municipalities.

In which situations is a license required?

If the intention is to buy a property the habitation permit is one of the indispensable documents and without it you won’t even be able to apply for a home loan or do the deed.

Necessary conditions for habitability

The habitable conditions of a house are defined by law – namely in the general regulation of urban constructions – and it can be said that they focus essentially on four specific areas: electricity, gas, water and sanitation.

Only after the conditions of the dwelling in these four areas are verified through an inspection can a housing permit be issued.

habitation permit portugal

How do I apply for a habitation permit?

If you own a house without a license or are building a house from scratch, you will have to request this document from the town planning services of the Municipality and fill out a request for this purpose. Each municipality has its own way of issuing this document and their own prices.

Note that if you are buying a house that is still under construction, the builder in question will be the one to deal with this license when the works are still being concluded. Since the habitability license is mandatory by law, if you (suppose) inherit a house that doesn’t have this license, it is necessary to request it, so that everything stays within the legal procedures.

How much does a habitation permit cost?

There is no set price for applying for a housing permit, as each municipality is free to set its own price list. On average it may cost you around 700 euros; however, be prepared as this figure may be higher or even lower than this reference.

Does the housing permit have validity?

The license does not necessarily have a stipulated validity period, and it is only necessary to renew it in the event of a modification to the structure of the building. This restructuring can be either a change in the initial plans of the building or a new construction.

If you then need to carry out works, when you finish them, you will have to apply for a new license. This is so that all alterations are properly made legal.

register property bupi

Where to request the plans of your property

The blueprint of a property is the document that contains detailed information about the distribution of the rooms of the property, with the respective areas and dimensions. By requesting a copy of the plan you can verify if the property is in accordance with the project approved by the entities with powers to do so. The plan is not indispensable for the buying and selling process, but it helps to know the changes made to the property.

You can request a copy of the floor plan of the property from the respective municipal council of your area.

What is a certificate of inheritance?

The certificate of inheritance is the document that you present to the bank in order to be able to operate the bank accounts which the deceased person held, as well as be able to redeem the Retirement Savings Plans or Certificates of Savings (or other financial products) which he had in his name.

You may hear that you have three months to make the proof of inheritance, but in fact that deadline does not apply to the making of the proof of inheritance, but to the registration of the death at the Finance Department and the payment of stamp duty on the inherited property.


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