Cascais, a life choice for many foreign families
Cascais is, nowadays, an elected destination for many of those who decide to leave their country and start a new life in Portugal. The main reason is simple: Cascais gathers truly exceptional conditions when it comes to balancing life quality with peace and safety.
Check out the numbers that confirm the growing interest of foreigners fixing their permanent or temporary residence in Portugal, or on its real estate market, as well as the reflection of that interest on the singular choice of Cascais and what this municipality has to offer in fulfilling daily needs, welcoming and integrating those who decide to live here.
In Portugal, foreign investment in the acquisition of real estate has represented, in 2014, 23% of the total amount of real estate operations on this country.
According to data from the Portuguese Real Estate Professionals and Brokers Association (PREPBA), around 75 thousand real estate units were traded between January and September 2014, the third trimester only registers 27 thousand of those operations. In those values the impact of foreign investors is clear. Foreign investment was responsible for 17.300 real estate trades, only in the first nine months of the year. In the last trimester of 2014, foreigners made more than 7.300 acquisitions. The British are among those who have invested more, being responsible for 3.866 of all the transactions, followed by the Chinese, with 3.178 of the transactions and then the French, with 2.712 acquisitions. Acquisitions undertook by individuals or companies with Chinese origin have been increasing consecutively and sustainably throughout the last two years, as a consequence of the introduction of the Visa Gold Program in Portugal.
Worldwide press hasn’t left any doubts when it comes to this subject: Portugal is in fashion! Different articles highlight Portugal’s diverse attributes, from the climate, to the landscape, the quality and diversity of restaurant and hospitality services, the kindness and welcoming attitude of the Portuguese, to the safety of resident families are common topics among international generic media as well as specialised tourism and real estate publications. If any doubts still existed, tourism numbers and occupancy rates, in continuous growth, would speak for themselves.
Yet this charm and seduction is scoring even beyond, making Portugal an interesting and promising destination for real estate investment by those who visit it and surrender to all its everyday charms. On the other hand, foreign investment in real estate, in global terms, yet particularly from Northern Europe countries, Brazil, Latin America and Asia records new achievements and attributes which prove its competitiveness. Portugal is among the most competitive, Cascais is not an exception in Portugal and foreigners, as potential real estate investors, have understood it quite well.
According to official data, Portugal was the third most sought European real estate market, by the Chinese, in 2014. According to the monthly magazine, News China, Portugal is among the “ten main destinations of foreign Chinese investment on real estate”, a list headed by the United States, Australia and Canada. Regarding to the “Golden Visa” introduced in 2012, by the Portuguese government, this magazine mentions that the Chinese bought nearly 85% of the houses sold in Portugal, under this program.
“According to the Portuguese immigration policy, non-European investors can request a temporary residence permit for this country, after buying a real estate property for a minimum value of 500.000 Euros”, “after five years they can request a permanent permit” and, “a year later they apt for Portuguese nationality”, highlights this magazine.
However, changing a place of residency is not an easy decision. The moving procedures usually require difficult adaptions, most of the times slow and complex. When it comes to processes that involve changing from one country, and mostly when this happens in a family context, the pros and cons have relevant weight on each side of the scale. Factors such as life quality, available infrastructure, security or even climate will determine, most of the time, the choice of location where one is looking to live permanently or temporarily. Therefore, you shouldn’t be surprised to find out that many of the foreigners who decide to move to Portugal, for professional reasons or others, many of them with children or young students, choose Cascais as the place where they wish to live with their families.
Cascais offers rigorously everything that you could expect in an urban lifestyle, complemented by unmatchable conditions of tranquillity and well-being, for example, the opportunity to enjoy a weekend by the beach, walking, playing with your children, or jogging along the seawall, with seagulls as companions.
Numbers also speak for themselves on this matter. According to official and most recent data from SEF – Foreigners and Customs Service, there are more than 118 different nationalities’ citizens living in the council of Cascais.
According to data from 2013, from this same entity, Cascais already has, to that date, 20.124 foreigners registered as residents, a number which corresponds to 9.7% of the total amount of residents of this municipality. Also, according to the same official source, at the top of the list of foreign residents living in Cascais you find citizens from Brazil – 29.5% – a factor which is due not only to easy communication, as they share the same Portuguese language, but also to the land characteristics (beaches and natural park) and the mild climate. Nevertheless, countries like United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Romania, Cape Verde, Ukraine and Angola record equally relevant numbers of permanent and temporary residents.
Aware and sensitive to the linguistic, cultural and even religious diversities that these numbers allow to deduct, Cascais is known to be a place for all nationals and foreigners that live here. The “best place to spend a day, a week or the whole life”. It is a way of respecting the culture and traditions of those who visit us and welcome us in their place of residence and “won’t switch Cascais for any other place in the world”.
In order to meet the specific needs of all these different communities, the Cascais municipality has been proactively looking to improve their hosting and integrations procedures for citizens, families and foreign communities living in its council. This is part of the goals drawn in the “Municipal Plan for the integration of Foreigners and Immigrants”, currently being developed.
Since the beginning of this year, two rounds of sessions calling for community participation, by collecting suggestions and opportunities to contribute to a better approximation between foreign residents and services, structures and equipment have been developed. After the technical encounters on different subjects such as culture, health, education, housing, hosting, bureaucracy, among others – specific measures will be proposed to build up the “Municipal Plan for the integration of Foreigners and Immigrants”. The final proposal will be discussed and validated, in order to determine the measures that should be implemented over the next two years.
Meanwhile, besides the Cascais municipal platform, which has, since March 2014, relevant information for residents and for those thinking about moving to Cascais, you can also look for all the information you might need and even clear some doubts on our website www.livingincascais.com. This website not only provides you with a guided tour, filled with details, on the life style of Cascais, but also enables you to check out essential information about daily life in Cascais, through a complete “Dossier – Moving to Cascais”.
If it is true that the numbers referring toof foreigners who surrender to Cascais’ charms and choose this place to live, speak for themselves and don’t stop growing, it is also true that beyond the numbers, the emotions and bonds established here provide most irrefutable proof of the well-being that characterises the daily life of those who live here.
If you are considering changing residence in the near future, you might wish to consider Portugal as a possible destination for you and your family. If this is a possible option, don’t hesitate in choosing Cascais. We are waiting for you. You are more than welcome.