Registering ownership of a property is the most important act of buying property in Portugal, because until the property is registered in your name, even after you’ve signed the
contract before the notary, charges can be fraudulently registered against it without your knowledge.
The reason is
under Portuguese law, title is only enforceable against third parties after registration of the property at the land registry (not by signing the escritura. Only when the escritura has been registered at the land registry are you the legal owner of the property.
After signing the escritura you should request a number of notarised copies for your records. The original deeds are stored in the notary’s office and a certified copy is produced and registered at the land registry (conservatória do registo predial) by the notário. Note that it can
take some months to complete the registration. It’s important to send the certified copy of the escritura to the property registry as soon as possible, preferably the same day that it’s signed.
The purchase must also be registered with the tax office (reparticão de finanças), who require the buyer’s tax number and a copy of the initial pages of his passport. Don’t forget to transfer all utilities into your name from the day of completion.
Deed Registration Fee
The registration fees for registering a deed of sale at the land registry (conservatória do registo predial) are approximately 0.75 to 1 per cent of the property’s value. The deed registration fee is paid to the notary with his fee for completing the sale.