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As the deconfinement plan for the COVID-19 pandemic began to be carried out on Monday, May 4, and real estate agencies reopen their doors, the president of APEMIP says “demand is waiting”.

Luís Lima, president of the APEMIP (Association of Real Estate Professionals and Companies of Portugal), acknowledged the significant impact that restriction measures have had on the real estate sector, but revealed he was optimistic about the reopening of real estate agencies as of Monday.

“Demand is waiting,” said Lima. “I have seen some signs, namely from the financial sector at the highest level which has shown interest, and from foreign citizens. If this [health] issue goes well for us, and due to the uncertainty of the countries that are our competitors in real estate, such as Italy and Spain, it will end up being positive for the national economy.”

For the APEMIP president, the crisis could be an opportunity to attract foreign investment for real estate over competing markets, with the country seen as a refuge. “There are many people who look at Portugal and see a country not only with a mild climate, that treats foreigners well and with good communication channels, but also a country where health can be trusted,” he noted.

House sales fall

The sector has been hard hit by the new coronavirus crisis. Despite a rise in house prices (read more), according to projections from the data bank Confidencial Imobiliário, there was a 5% decrease in house sales in the first quarter of the year. Many constraints, such as in air travel and property fairs, remain before the sector will return to any degree of normality,

“As of Monday, the search will not appear straight away. We have to go looking for it and do our job carefully,” said Lima. “These are constraints that have consequences, but we have to prepare ourselves to be strong when we can function normally.”

COVID-19 has brought many changes to the property market in Portugal (read more here), but specialist agents like Algarve Home Sales are here to help. If you are considering buying or selling a property in Portugal, the team at Algarve Home Sales can help you navigate the real estate market at this unusual time. You can message us here for more information.

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