What is a buyer’s agent?

Everyone knows there can be a lot of stress involved in buying a property, particularly one in another country. Whether you’re looking for a holiday home on the beach, relocating or making an investment, there’s always a lot to consider, and using a buyer’s agent in Portugal can make the process a lot simpler.

While many people are used to dealing with an estate agent or realtor, the concept of a buyer’s agent is very different, and one which can be far more beneficial to buyers.

What’s the difference between a realtor and a buyer’s agent?

Whereas a traditional realtor works only for the seller, a property buyer’s agent is an independent specialist who handles everything related to your purchase, from start to finish. A buyer’s agent (or buying agent in the UK) can help take all the stress out of buying property in Portugal and make sure that the buyer always gets the best deal.

The role of a buyer’s agent isn’t just about finding the right price, but also the right property that fits the requirements of the buyer. A buyer’s agent in Portugal will also provide much-needed support during the transaction process, liaising with lawyers and service providers for the buyer’s convenience and peace of mind.

Why do you need a buyer’s agent in Portugal?

There are many advantages to using a buyer’s agent in Portugal, not least because the Portuguese real estate market and legal processes can be incredibly difficult to navigate, especially when you don’t speak the language and are unfamiliar with the country.

It’s difficult to find the right information

Buying a property in another country always requires a leap of faith. However, you may find it difficult to get the right information about buying a property.

While you may find a lot of content online about buying property in Portugal, a lot of it is incorrect or out of date. Ultimately nothing can beat the advice of an expert who fully understands your requirements and has your best interests in mind.

It is also worth noting that some premium luxury properties are not available online, and working with a buyer’s agent can give you access to more opportunities.

You might make avoidable mistakes

If you don’t know much about Portugal, you could end up buying a property in the wrong area, or in an area that is unsuitable for you. You might also find yourself underestimating the amount of restoration work that a property requires, or end up buying a house which is not exactly what you were looking for.

You could have legal issues

There are many legal requirements in purchasing property in Portugal that you are probably not aware of.

The benefit of enlisting the help of a buyer’s agent in Portugal is that they know the processes, and they know what to look out for.

In some cases, when you buy a property in Portugal, there can still be debt attached to it. Other problems to watch out for are the dispersion of ownership, where a property can have multiple owners, some of whom might not even live in Portugal. In older properties, it is also important to know legal construction history. Up until recently, it was relatively common for houses to be built or enlarged without the necessary planning permission, which can cause problems for potential buyers.

While it may seem like you can just take care of the entire purchasing process yourself, it is ill-advised to buy real estate in Portugal without having sought legal advice beforehand. If you sign a contract or pay a deposit without having done so, you could find yourself in a difficult situation.

Though it may seem more expensive to seek the help of a buyer’s agent, in the long term it could lead to considerable savings, especially if you encounter problems along the way.

Use a buyer's agent in Portugal

What can a buyer’s agent do for you?

A buyer’s agent will conduct your search for you

Portugal is different from other countries in that there is no central database of real estate. This means that property searches can be fragmented and difficult to conduct.

A buyer’s agent will do an extensive search of the Portuguese real estate market based upon your requirements, using local contacts to find the best property for you.

A buyer’s agent will ensure legal checks are carried out

The benefit of enlisting the help of a buyer’s agent in Portugal is that they know the processes, and they know what to look out for. They can help you ensure that a property is ready to buy by checking the building’s administrative record (certidão de teor).

If you enlist the services of builders and developers, using a buyer’s agent will guarantee that the work contract is fulfilled.

Take a look at this guide to buying Portugal real estate.

A buyer’s agent speaks the language

Another added benefit of using a buyer’s agent in Portugal is that you will have someone to liaise with all the necessary contact, such as architects, builders, and surveyors, which can be difficult if you don’t speak Portuguese.

If you are dealing with someone who benefits directly from selling you the property, then they will always be working for interests that aren’t yours.

This is something to bear in mind when considering hiring a buyer’s agent. A buyer’s agent in Portugal will work only for your interests, ultimately meaning you get the best deal.

A buyer’s agent will negotiate for you

Using the services of a buyer’s agent in Portugal means that you don’t have to fear being overcharged for a property.

Foreign buyers who are not familiar with the Portuguese market prices and terms may find information from local estate agents to be contradictory. A buyer’s agent knows the price that you should be paying and will negotiate on your behalf so that you get it.

A buyer’s agent will make sure you have the right documentation

Just a small mistake in your documentation could lead to costly setbacks. Using a buyer’s agent will mean that you have all of the correct paperwork in regards to:

A buyer’s agent will save you time and money

The extra hassle involved in moving to a different country means that it makes even more sense to hire a buyer’s agent. You won’t have to make multiple journeys, canvassing the country yourself and wasting energy looking at properties that don’t suit you.

Having an agent who works directly for you means that you will get the perfect property for you, and save time and money in the process.