Portuguese lettings market 'outperforms sales'
By James Roberts

Portuguese lettings market 'outperforms sales'

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The Portuguese property sales market remains weak, despite strong lettings activity, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics)/Ci Portuguese Housing Market Survey (PHMS).

Results from the March PHMS show the continued weakness of the sales market, across price, activity and expectations. While the national price balance and confidence index improved slightly, they still remain in negative territory.

Falling demand is one of the reasons cited behind the decline in property prices in Portugal.

By contrast, the lettings market has benefited from a lack of available finance, as households who cannot afford a mortgage are deciding to rent instead.

Josh Miller, senior economist at Rics, said rents were also declining, despite being more robust than the rest of the property market.

He stated: "[This] may be indicative of the current stresses on the household sector, reflected in a 15% unemployment rate."

The Financial Times recently reported that property prices are lower in central and northern Portugal, compared to those in the popular tourist areas further south and around Lisbon.


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