Property matters on Madeira

edited December 1969 in Real Estate

Ricochet South, the makers of No Going Back are making a new documentary series about British people buying property abroad. It will be a practical guide to avoiding the pitfalls, with expert advice and tips. Are you:

Having problems buying or building your new home?

Having trouble negotiating local bureaucracy,
laws and customs?

Having difficulties selling your house?


Tel: Hannah or Christina +44 (0)1273 648 340
Or email:


  • blimey Hannah, I've got enough material for the whole series and I've only been in Madeira for 7 months!

  • H aha ha Hanna oh yeah hang on Im thinking of doing this I will probably qualify as I have no money ,no hope, am going in blind ,cant speak the language, am an ethnic minority , Ill probably have a nasty accident whilst there, and have planned nothing!! Reckon ill qualify?. Why dont you stop looking for people like that and concentrate on the people like me who spend hours getting information to make our move as trouble free as possible??? Answer........... it doesnt make good tv does it pahhhhhh
  • Hi

    I represent someone that has recently purchased property on Mareira.
    Can anyone out there give me details of how goods are shipped to Madeira?

    The client wants to ship their furniture to their new home?


  • Ever thought of using a removals company?

    Gill Shaw wrote:

    > Hi
    > I represent someone that has recently purchased property on
    > Mareira.
    > Can anyone out there give me details of how goods are shipped
    > to Madeira?
    > The client wants to ship their furniture to their new home?
    > Regards
    > Gill

  • To Hannah,
    We are moving to Madeira, hopefully this time at the end of July. Having had fun selling the house, all the usual problems with buyers pulling out etc, we have a cash buyer now(keeping fingers crossed) so maybe we will be lucky this time, as for the bureaucracy in Madeira with buying a house, got that fun to face yet. Just got to pack, get the shippers in, get a flight and off we go, see, simple as that - or not!!
  • Whats up with all the non portuguese moving to my country?
  • For me I want to get away from the Yob mentality that Britain is becoming. Combine this with a hectic pace of life poor weather etc etc
  • Yes, I have the same question! There is quite an exodus. It concerns me that so many people are coming to Madeira. I hope fervently that it will not be ruined, as has happened in the Algarve. The Portuguese already have enough problems than to add one more: the culture being dessimated by tourism and "progress." Do you have any suggestions about what to do?

  • Well, Portugal could leave the European union, as it is that that allows free movement between member states.

    What you see happening in Madeira with immigrants now has been happening in the UK and other parts of mainland Europe for years, and it shouldn't spoil things unless you have a government who lose control.

    Catch up you doubters, recognise the positives, enjoy the diversity, and make the situation work for you, not against you .

  • Hi Antonio,
    I don't think your culture is going to be "dessimated" because isn't that the reason people are coming to Madeira? Can anyone buy property in Madeira? Maybe then you should change the law that only a certain percentage can be bought by foreigners.
    I am living in Ireland and over the last years the number of foreign people here have increased dramatically, there are now "Brasilien Festivals" and "French Markets" here and I think it is great as long as you get on with each other and it doesn't turn into a social problem. I am sure the people moving to Madeira are doing so because they like your culture, your country and the people there and will try their best to fit in and if they don't, I agree they should stay where they are.
    Isn't tourism a big part of your economy? I hope you are not against tourists as well because I am coming to Madeira next week.
    See you then,
  • What I have seen in the Algarve, for example, is the destruction of a way of life that people went there to have! In other words, they went to the Algarve to get away from the ravages of progress, but only brought it with them! The Algarve has been largely destroyed, and a way of life along with it - a culture, a people. Yes, you can say nowhere is what it used to be, and you would be correct. But there is a difference between change and dessimation brought on by greed. This concerns me.

    When people are poor and they are offered what they think will give them a better life (fast money), it is easy to sell oneself out, to sell one's country out. This happens all over the world, I know, but my concern at the moment is Madeira. And it is also true that politicians sell out their own people, so one cannot just say it's "You Guys" whoever the "you guys" would be.

    I think it is very, very important for everyone to have their eyes open around this, to be informed, to be educated about the consequences about over development. In some places in the Algarve, you cannot swim in the sea because the raw sewage is just dumped there, coming down from the hills, especially in places where there has been overdevelpment.

    Is this "getting away from it all", or just bringing it all with you?!

  • Dear Martina,

    I am not against tourists, by the way. I am against what mindlessness can breed.

    And to you, Der.

    Diversity is good, as long as there is consumate respect for what is already there. Do you take the time to really learn about the people and culture on Madeira? To honor what has gone before you for generations?

    This is not an accusation. It is a genuine question.

  • Antonio, I don't disagee, I do respect what is already here and what has past. I live amongst Madeirans, not in an expat village, because that's what I want, so I do understand some of the Madeiran ways and culture. When I understand the language more this will develop further.

    I think you probably overestimate the number of foreigners coming here, and the concerns you have may be about sectors of Madeira being 'taken over' by these people, like in the Algarve. Speaking for myself, I want no part of that arrangement.

  • Der,

    I hope you are not the exception in these matters. So my questions to you are:

    How many others bother to learn Portuguese? How many others consider that Portugal and the Portuguese have something to offer other than beautiful vistas and inexpensive but good food? How many others bother to understand the roots of the country they are living off of? I know that we all do a diservice to ourselves and it is not always the other guy that does this, but I have seen and experienced a lot.

    It is not bitterness that prompts these questions. But a desire to know someone's view.

  • ever been to Luxemburg?
    In hospitals and other public places, signs are also in Portugese because so many Portugese live there. Some people move for economic reasons, to make more money, usually the move is to the north. Other people move to get away from the hectic life, usually they move to the south. Migration has always been part of life. Don't forget foreigners can only buy a house when the locals want to sell.
  • Hi, I live in Madeira and I have a new house to sell in Caniço with a wonderfull ocean view. Do you want more informations about it, email me:
  • Hi Hannah,

    Just let your readers and clients know to BEWARE of those Estate Agents that are not registered and try to sell you property with only the commission in mind and lie about the state of the property. A friend of mine got into a situation with a real estate company here and when he realised that something fishy was going on like "bumped up" attorneys fees etc, he refused to buy and had a helluva time getting out of it, these "so-called Estate Agents" are SHARKS so beware, always make sure that they show you that they are registered.

    Always double check your facts. Go with reptuable Agencies.

    Hope that helps Hannah
  • Very good advice Nina.

    I would add that many of the illegal ones charge the buyer a commission. Then also get something from the seller. Which is blatanly illegal under Portuguese law.

    Using an "illegal estate agent" can also get both the buyer and seller into prison. Why? you may ask. Well, since you will inevitably be required to lie to the Notary that there was no real estate agent involved (only legal ones can be declared). YES, YOU HAVE TO DECLARE THE REAL ESTATE COMPANY involved in the deal or else.... The penalty for making false declarations to a notary can mean up to 3 years imprisonment....
    Speak to your attorney before attempting to make false declarations to the notary when you do the transfer of deed (escritura).
  • Hi, I would just like to say that we found our dream home by using Property Finder (they have a link through this site). They were extremely helpful, took us everywhere, to look at properties, bank, financia, notary atc and it didn't cost us a penny! Thankyou again Idilia and Maria.
  • You shouldn't go agains people comming here, this island thrives on tourism.
    If you're against people comming to your contry think "Would you like people of your country being kicked out the countries they went to?" "Haven't people from here gone out their country looking for a better life to?"

    All I know is it might get better then worse, maybe people here would become more culturaly open, and friendly, and actually learn something from it.
  • hi there,
    just a random question if you dont mind, since you are gathering info and i have read quite a few of the responses on this site. i would like to know how the judicial system operates in madeira,as in, if one has legal matters to sort out, when do the courts close for the festive season, easter celebrations etc.
    i need to go over but need to do my planning carefully.
    hope you can help and good luck in your venture.
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