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Building a new house in Portugal

Building a new house in Portugal


If you are about to start Building a new house in Portugal or would like to Build a new house in Portugal

This is the ideal blog for you

You would think that there would be a check list for doing this wouldn’t you.

A simple list in order of importance that people like you could follow and cut out the stress from  Building a new house in Portugal.

Unfortunately we often meet people who have started half way down the list and then have to back track in order to cover all the important bases. Don’t get me wrong it’s a perfectly understandable thing to do  if you are sitting in a cold rainy UK, Germany or Holland dreaming of your ideal place to live in the sun.

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Building a new house in Portugal

I am guilty myself of sketching floor plans and elevation plans of my ideal home. One design even had an Italian inspired tower!. So I do realize that you are not alone!

The first consideration is the land. Location, Location, location.

Have you established for certain that the land can have a dwelling built on it.

Is there access for construction vehicles. Is the ground suitable for building on without huge additional cost.

Can you actually fit the size of home that you want on the land with outbuildings and a swimming pool (are you sure).

Is there water and power nearby that won’t be difficult or take a long time to make utility connections so that you can live in the finished home.

Plans drawings sketches, photographs. Do you have a firm idea of the property that you want to build. Number of bedrooms, size and number of floors.

You probably do and you may be one of the 20% of people we meet who are trying to find a plot of land that will accommodate their recently paid for house design. In the process they forget or are forced to give way on the three most important rules –

Location, Location, location

Here are the Top 10 Mistakes People Make When They Build Their Own Homes

  1. Focusing on Wants Before Needs
  2. Buying a House Plan Before the Land
  3. Not Picturing Family Dynamics When Picking Plans
  4. Thinking the Cost of All Square Footage Is Equal
  5. Choosing a Complicated Footprint Just Because
  6. Not Considering the Benefits of Universal Design
  7. Valuing Cubic Volume Above Square Footage
  8. Maligning or Over-Appreciating Hallways
  9. Incorporating Excessive Extras
  10. Designing Without a Strategy

Published on June 24, 2016 by Rachel Lyon


You can read the full article here;

Fires in Portugal

Fires in Portugal

 Fire spreading

It can be alarming and saddening to witness the Fires in Portugal.


Most people who have a full time home or holiday home here worry about the Fires in Portugal and the effect that the Fires in Portugal will have on the value od their property and their ability to insure a hone against the Fires in Portugal.

Its a fact we have Fires in Portugal every year. Normally during the hottest period of the year July – August and September.

Usually people are not killed and few properties are actually destroyed by the Fires in Portugal. Occasionally like in 2017 things are bad and many people are killed.

So what can you do to protect your own life and that of your family and pets from the devestating fires in Portugal.

1, Don’t buy a house in a highly forested area.

2, Don’t live in a wooden or timber house

3, Old houses with their very dry timber roofs are often set alight by brush fires nearby concrete roofs are safer.

4, Clear the land of weeds, grass and shrubs around the perimeter of your land. Make a 4 meter wide clear band.

5, Make sure that your neighbors’ are obeying the law by cleaning their land along your perimeter. If you are not you can ask them to carry out the work promptly or ask the Camara to enforce the law and contact the owners.

6, Make sure that your neighbors’ are obeying the law by clearing the trees on their land along your perimeter if they are too close to your home. If you are not you can ask them to carry out the work promptly or ask the Camara to enforce the law and contact the owners.

7, Make plans to have a water spraying system or enough large bore hoses to reach all around your property. Preferably at the perimeter so that you can wet down large areas before the fires reach you. You will need a motorized pump and a water source like a swimming pool or well.

8, You cannot rely upon the public water supply having any water that you can use or for the electricity to work as over land wire become rapidly burnt out in a Portuguese fire.

9, If you are not living permanently in the property you must have the land cleared regularly and have a neighbor who will react to save your property in the event of a Portuguese fire.

10, Planning aids prevention. Just hopping for the best will cost you dear in the long-run.

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multiple building projects

We have worked together with a several clients on multiple building projects.

They tell us that they like the regular communication and photo reports that we send every two weeks. It gives them the all-important confidence that they know what’s going on and can see progress even when they are not in Portugal.

Obviously it is easier to relax on your second building project after having completed satisfactory their first.

The most common fear new clients have is not being in control of – finances, design, timescales and finishes.

 Castelo Construction use a detailed spreadsheet list which include everything from when the kitchen should be ordered to save delays or when the final list of tiles should be provided so that we all know that the materials will be on site ready for the craftsmen and that there is no hanging about.


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It is true that Portuguese time is not British time. It’s good to understand this because in order to keep the building process moving we have to look ahead all the time. Take August for instance. Not all builders close down in Portugal during August. BUT as most materials come by truck through Spain which does close for all of August there is very little availability during that Month which can build massive delays into a project.

Take for instance your central heating system. You may be tempted to buy one that you saw when you lived in Copenhagen or Scotland. It may have been super-efficient and bright and shiny but are there any certified engineers here in this part of Portugal who can service or fix it if it goes wrong. There may be a clause for instance which requires the system to be fitted by a certified installer and if not the warranty is not valid.  Which is quite a risk to take.

You can rely upon our recommendations of manufactures of heating cooling, kitchens, windows and so on. Because we have worked with them already have some clout with them and they understand our timescales and quality standards.

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