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06, apr 22 | Reading: 10 min.

Buying a House to Renovate? | Casas do Barlavento

Buying a house is one of the most significant moments in anyone's life. It is a watershed moment when your desire becomes a reality, and you can purchase the home of your dreams. However, finding a property that fulfils all your requirements is not always straightforward. We will discuss the benefits and drawbacks of buying a fixer-upper house. By the end of this article, you will know whether buying a property to renovate is the best option for you or whether a turnkey house is what you are searching for.


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When looking for a property, you need to be clear about whether you want a turnkey house, where you will find a new build, or whether you want a property that needs some renovation works so that everything is to your liking. You should evaluate the upsides and downsides of each option. At this step, filter your alternatives and set out to select the house that will be your home, sweet home!


Buying a house to renovate


At the time of your decision, the question is whether it is worthwhile to buy a home to renovate. The answer can be ambiguous because it all depends on the deal. Houses that require renovation can be an excellent deal if the renovation work involves a small investment and little execution time. If you can foresee the duration of the work and the associated costs before you officially buy, you will enter the deal consciously and confidently.


Once you've found an offer that works for you, you should get to work. Renovation work will take up some of your time, and if you have no practical knowledge in this field, you should be prepared to invest more money and time. If you are clueless about DIY and small jobs, you should consider hiring companies that specialise in arranging small works. These companies have the necessary contacts for any obstacle that comes up in your property, have competitive prices, and since several teams are working with the same goal, you will have your house ready in less time. Do not forget to ask for several budgets from the surveying companies. Only then will you be able to choose which company is most suited to refurbish your new house.



Do you need a permit for all house renovations?


Before you begin work on your new home's renovations, you should first understand what permits are required in such circumstances. Although no permit is required in some cases, you should always learn about the bureaucracy involved in building projects ahead of time.


Typically, municipal permits are required for works that interfere with the structure or façade of the property. Examples include the reconstruction of a destroyed house, the alteration of a house façade, the closure of a balcony, and works that necessitate the use of scaffolding. These works should always be reported to your local council, and you should find out whether a permit is required or if you only need to give the council prior notice.


On the contrary, works that do not interfere with the house structure do not require notification or authorization. In other words, those that do not affect the property's height, façade, roofs, beams or columns. We'll leave you with some examples of changes that don't require any prior paperwork. If you have any questions about the work permits, contact your Municipal Council.


  • Painting the interior: In most cases, permission isn't required, but if you want to paint a cultural value house, you must seek permission from the local authority. If this is not your case, you can paint or wallpaper the walls any colour you want.


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  • Wall demolish: You may demolish walls on your property, provided that such demolitions do not jeopardise the stability, height, façade, or roof. If you buy a house in a building, always notify your neighbours about any potential noise from renovation work.


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  • Change the windows and doors: changing these house elements is considered a low impact work and therefore does not require permission. This is one of the changes most promoted by the Portuguese government itself, as it provides thermal and acoustic comfort to the residents.

Find out more about the incentive programme for more energy-efficient buildings.


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  • Installing solar panels: You can install solar panels on your property without acquiring a permit as long as the installation does not exceed the property's roof area or the building's height by more than one metre.


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  • Change the floor or walls: Not only does changing the floor or walls of your house require no licences, but it also provides any house with a whole new look. These are two elements that can easily be changed by more up-to-date coatings and where you can get creative.


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  • Kitchen renovation: It is one of the areas that get more wear and tear over time, whether from moisture or cooking grease that sticks to the furniture and walls. Then there is the bathroom, which is also exposed to a lot of moisture. For this reason, these two areas are usually the first to be renovated. As with all other renovation works, no permission or advance notice is required.


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Home Renovation Tips

Remodelling the house almost became a hobby during the confinements due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Many people began to work on the changes they wanted to see in their homes to make them more inviting, comfortable, and with well-defined spaces for the many tasks that began to unfold between four walls.


Renovations in homes around the world continued even after the lockdowns were lifted. Some desired a home that showed their personality, while others relied on improvements to put their home on the market.


Whatever your ultimate goal, we'll give you some ideas on how to renovate your home and give rooms a whole new look.


  • Create larger rooms: There is nothing better than creating larger rooms in your home. The kitchen and living room are good examples of how you can make your home more spacious and functional. You can delimit the areas with just furniture and even create new spaces, like a small office for remote working.

Here are some tips on how to furnish your home office.


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  • Make your home eco-friendlier: This benefits both the environment and your budget. Insulating your home or installing more energy-efficient appliances may be costly, but it will pay for itself quickly.


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  • Room organization: If you want extra space in your home, you must organize your rooms. There are various ways to store less-used products or organize the many books scattered around the house these days. Choose custom-made furniture or shelving to maximize your home's corners. Built-in wardrobes in bedrooms or the house's atrium are always a highly handy storage solution.

These ideas will help you make extra space in your home.


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Is it better to buy a turnkey house or a fixer-upper?


Now that you're aware of the factors to consider when renovating a home, it's time to decide whether a turnkey home or a fixer-upper home is the better option.


A turnkey house implies that you can move in right away and begin your new life. When working with real estate professionals, you will have access to all the information regarding the particularities of the space and you will not be surprised after making the move.


This option is the quickest if you are in a hurry to move. As for the investment, it is not necessarily more expensive to buy a turnkey house. You will have to carefully evaluate all the elements of the house, and do some research on the value of coatings, equipment or even furniture if the house is already furnished. One of the disadvantages of buying turnkey houses is that you cannot choose some elements according to your wishes.


We advise you to research well before you say the final "yes". Describe the elements you want to see in a house and let our professionals help you and save time on your search.

Find one of our turnkey properties or explore our portfolio full of excellent proposals.


Meia Praia villa for sale


This home was built with great care and attention to detail to provide comfort in a luxury setting. It is situated on the seaside in Meia Praia, Lagos, on a high-level plane with no other houses in the way of the view.

To make this house even more unique, sustainability and energy efficiency were emphasized during the building works. With solar panels on the roof, double glazing for thermal and sound insulation, and gardens with native plants that provide excellent shade on the hottest summer afternoons.

This property has four bedrooms, two of which are on the upper level and have private bathrooms and access to the patio. The remaining two bedrooms are on the ground floor and can be turned into a separate apartment with a living room and kitchen.

This magnificent sea-view property also boasts two swimming pools, one of which is heated and three metres deep. The second is larger, with a wrap-around terrace for sun loungers and for enjoying the Algarve weather.


Villa for sale Meia Praia Lagos


A fixer-upper house can sometimes offer interesting values if the investment is small, and you can still save for the renovation of certain rooms. A great advantage is that you can design the house the way you like it best. Choose the colours and paints that best suit your everyday life or make a selection within your budget.


Another advantage of buying a fixer-upper house is that you can sell it quickly after renovation works at a higher price and get a significant monetary return. Plan the house renovation following current trends, identifying and emphasizing the property's strong qualities. Refer the property to a real estate agent for a speedy return on investment.



Traditional Villa for sale in Mexilhoeira Grande


This villa has the characteristics of a typical Algarve house, with its pointed chimney, terrace, and garden with fruit trees. There are also sea views from the terrace, plenty of space for al fresco dining, and a storage room that could be converted into a room for another purpose.

The villa has three bedrooms and two bathrooms, a large living and dining room, and a bright kitchen with access to the semi-open porch. There is plenty of room in the backyard to plant a garden with traditional Algarve trees.

This villa's rooms are very spacious and may be changed to suit your needs. This villa for sale is located in a quiet community just minutes from the towns of Portimão and Lagos, with several amenities within walking distance of the house.

Villa for sale Mexilhoeira Grande Portimão Algarve



When looking for a home, always consider which option is best for you, based on the advice in this article. Plan every step of the journey, review your budget, and consult with a real estate agent. We have over 15 years of experience in this sector and can recognize the potential in properties at Casas do Barlavento. Speak with us and discuss your case; we will find the ideal home for you in record time.