Owners in Portugal will have a maximum period of 100 days to rent empty homes

Aerial view of the fortress of the port of Setúbal, the city located in the south of the homonymous peninsula, just 50 kilometers from Lisbon, Portugal (Manuel Meyer/DPA/File) (Manuel Meyer/)

homeowners will have a period of 100 days from the receipt of a rental proposal from the municipal authorities to re-rent an empty property “in habitable conditions”, according to the law proposal of the Government of Portugal posted this saturday public consultation.

Properties for residential use classified as empty” will be able “be subject to forced lease by the municipalities for their subsequent subletting in the field of public housing programs”, according to the text published on the portal Query Lex.

They will be the municipalities, each owner will have ten days to confirm your receipt. In case of refusal or no response, “a property returned more than 90 days ago may be subject to a forced lease”.

The Government explains that if it is necessary to carry out works on the property, these may be carried out “coercively by the municipalities (…) in charge of the rents”.

The government explained that will not be affected as a rule, second homes, emigrant homes or homes of those who live abroad for professional, training or health reasons, those that were acquired for resale by natural or legal persons or those that are “within a tourist enterprise and are registered as local accommodation”.

The standard fits into the package More Housing presented by the Portuguese Socialist Government on February 16 and which is available for a period of public consultation until March 10th. The plan includes a cost of €900 million.

Alentejo, an area with much to discover in the south of Portugal (Europa Press / Archive)
Alentejo, an area with much to discover in southern Portugal (Europa Press/Archive) (COURTESY TURISMO DE PORTUGAL/)

In another order, Portugal wants to exploit the potential of tourism for the LGTBI+ communitywhich represents a tenth of the country’s visitors, and has opened its own space in the Lisbon Tourist Exchange (BTL), the largest fair in the sector.

More than a dozen companies are gathered in this space, managed by Variações, the Portuguese LGTBI Trade and Tourism Association, and whose objective is “the national and international promotion of these businesseswhich in most cases are micro-enterprises”.

“10% of the tourists who visit our country belong to the LGTBI+ community,” he explained to the news agency EFE the vice president of Variações, Kiki Country of Sousawhich indicates that it is a public with “specific needs”.

Look for “safe destinations” and Portugal is increasingly positioned among them: “It is known for having excellent hospitality. We speak Portuguese, English, French…”, insists Pais de Sousa.

Among the businesses that this BTL space houses there are nightclubs, saunas, hotels or real estate consultants specialized in the LGTBI+ community, and they all agree: they have not stopped growing in recent years in Portugal.

A person has breakfast in a cafe in Lisbon (EFE / Andrea Caballero de Mingo / File)
A person has breakfast in a cafe in Lisbon (EFE / Andrea Caballero de Mingo / File) (Andrea Caballero de Mingo /)

More and more foreigners

Eddy Van Wallendael He has owned Bar 3 Lisboa since 2010 and assured that the business has “duplicate” since then, so much so that in 2019 he decided to also open Villa 3 Caparica, a hotel designed for gay men from 25 years of age but “open to everyone”.

Between 80% and 90% of customers are foreignersfrom the United States, Australia and Europe, much of Spain.

“In Portugal, the LGTBI+ market will be represented by 50% of foreigners, it is very large,” he told EFE trumps manager, Mark Marcier.

Trumps started as a nightclub and has expanded to become a brand, and is at the BTL to present a project to promote queer artists and another to train companies to better speak to LGTBI+ customers.

It is very important that tourism recognizes the LGTBI+ reality and the need to have specific products for their community”, considers Mercier.

At the fair there is also the Trombeta Bath sauna, where half of the clients are foreigners, especially from Spain, according to its owner, joao costa.

For Costa, the fact that Portugal is a safe destination for the community is no longer in question: “We are a country of the European Union. We were among the first countries to have gay marriage,” she recalled.

(With information from Europa Press and EFE)

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