We have recently acquired 9 ha (22acres) of land in the center-north of Portugal and I was wondering if any of you need help doing the same.
We have researched in many places for that sweet combination of water, sun-exposure, arable soil + forests and good weather for a while. Our search covered Italy, Spain and Portugal, being the last one our favorite option.
I'm writing to check if there is demand for support in doing something similar. We see a lot of people moving to the countryside, especially with the new (more decentralized) way of living, and we find it a pity the language might be a barrier.
Portugal and the European Union provides a lof of incentives to move to the countryside and start a homestead. We can help connecting the dots.
We're also building the house, so we can support also with some info on architects, contractors, permits etc.
thank you for offering your support, thats really kind from you.
My girlfriend and I started looking for a land or farm in Spain or Portugal a year ago. However we are making a slow progress, since we couldnt travel and visit those countries.
We are very curious how did you find the land and in which region is it?
Did you had a support from a lawyer or similar in the buying process?
You are mentioning that the EU provides incentives for moving to the countryside, can you be maybe more specific about, (maybe you have some articles to share)
thanks a lot for your time and best wishes from Germany
The traveling has been quite a challenge in covid times for sure. Well, we were searching for an area with good rainfall (>1000 mm / year), south-facing, water, so we decided not to pursue the common goal of many (Algarve region) but aim for the northern part, with a more Atlantic weather.
Our property is in the district of Viseu, close-ish to the Star Mountain (Serra da Estrela). More precisely here: 40.68231064252508, -7.574254709130375
This area has a deficit of people, with an aging population and strong migration to cities, the land is fairly cheap and abundant. At times, it is hard to find the owner to buy it from them - but one can manage.
We searched first at idealista.pt, www.olx.pt, https://www.era.pt/imoveis/comprar/terrenos, https://www.imovirtual.com/comprar/terreno/ and other small real state agencies we found along the way. Normally, one real state agency dominates a large area, so if you find that one, you'll have info about all properties.
Regarding the subsidies, there are plenty - some of them very specific, some more broad. The main program is the EAFRD (European agricultural fund for rural development)
https://ec.europa.eu/info/food-farming-fisheries/key-policies/common-agricultural-policy/rural-development_en In Portugal, the website is this: http://www.pdr-2020.pt/ The calls for applications are spread throughout the year and over many different area (irrigation project, young farmer program, forestry grants, agroforestry grants, etc). There is a tentative calendar, but the best thing to do it access it frequently to know what calls are open.
They can grant you up to 85% of the costs of your project, but it has to be aligned with the expenses they cover (specific for each call).
This is just one of many other rural development funds and grants. I like to say that this one is easy to understand, but harder to get (some calls are very specific for some counties, and you might need to wait for your turn). There are other ones, for example the Pedido Unico (single request) https://www.ifap.pt/pedido-unico This one is MUCH easier, and it grants you things like compensation for having a forest and not a cropland area. But the amount can be small, I think around 200€/ha/year for the compensation for forestry over cropland for example. But there are others.
We did not need a lawyer to purchase the land. We requested many documents to prove that the land was legally suitable. We looked into the building permissions and regional zoning for the county (very easy info to find online) - and things like, incidence of fire, erosion risk, noise pollution, etc. (the country website has maps with good resolution for all these).
I'll be happy to connect over Skype to exchange some info.
We have now submitted our request for a construction permit to the city hall and we're working with a local architect to renovate a ruin in our land. We aim to build a homestead there and slowly relocate there.
Hello Marcello, thank you so much for the offer - I think we well be in need, your email would be also apreciated.
My boyfriend and I recently bought a ca 4ha property in Vila Mendo de Tavares (should be 20km from your spot), south-west facing with a creek, some ruins and 2-3 wells (we are still looking for the 3d, but its suposed to be there).
It burned all in 2016-2017 and we are on a totaly rural spot with permission to build on the ruins but still some paperwork to do for the project and dealings with finanzas and such... we want do do an agricultural project so I'd probably have tons of questions for you =)
We are still traveling back and forth to germany where we work but are planing to move in max 2years... so as you mentioned the region is pretty low on population and we'd like to meet the neighbours I guess you could say? =) Maybe for a coffee sometime in Sao Joao? all the best to you for now and have a good one neigbour
Alma! That is actually such a huge coincidence. We have relatives living in the Gouveia-Gare station street right next to you!
If your property has been affected by fire then you probably qualify for some benefits.
I can only imagine the hustle to manage the Finanças without knowing Portuguese. We also have a ruin in our land and we went through the process to rehabilitate it (documentation for now, building will take longer).
We're based in Rome for now, with still no fixed plan to move there YET. I'm a forester so we took care of the planting last year and will now take our time to iron out our projects and build.
But I cannot wait to move there for a few months / year.