Six months ago Chris and Jane Brown from Essex had never set foot in Portugal, but by the second week of October, the couple had bought and moved into a new home in the Algarve, having sold their house in Colchester in a matter of weeks!

Article written by The Overseas Guides Company

“Everything happened so fast,” said Chris, aged 60. “I only decided to retire from the construction industry at the end of May, which is when we decided not only to downsize but to look at moving abroad. We’d never been to Portugal but knew it offered a great way of life and had a good year-round climate.”

By July, the Browns had done their research – which included reading the Portugal Property Buying Guide – and were viewing properties in the Central Algarve with estate agency Ideal Homes Portugal, who met them at the airport and arranged their accommodation in the resort of Albufeira. The couple’s budget was up to £300,000 and, like the thatched cottage they owned in the UK, they wanted a home with character.

“Natalie from Ideal Homes Portugal was very helpful and incredibly we ended up buying the second property she showed us, putting down a deposit during our stay,” continues Jane, aged 59. “The property, near Loulé, was on the market for around €300,000, but our second offer of €290,000 was accepted and included the furniture. It was owned by another English couple who needed to return to the UK and even featured on the A Place in the Sun TV series earlier this year!”

On returning to the UK, Chris and Jane escalated their efforts to sell their UK home, a three-bedroom character property, with half an acre, a swimming pool and flat over the garage, which they’d lived in for 15 years. They also purchased a park home on the edge of Colchester, to have as a UK base for when they visit their daughter, son and three grandchildren. By the end of August, they had exchanged and completed, accepting an offer of around £400,000. They spent September at their park home before driving down to the Algarve to receive the keys to their new home on 10th October.

“The location is stunning,” says Chris. “We’re a few miles inland but up in the hills, so we still have fantastic views of Vilamoura and the sea from the terrace! We have three bedrooms in the main house, as well as a self-contained, two-bedroom annexe for when family and friends come to stay, and a swimming pool.”

Adds Jane: “Still being new to Portugal means we have so much to discover still, which is exciting. We’ve had a few sticky situations, which we’ve resolved more often than not with the help of Natalie at Ideal Homes Portugal, who really do so much more than you’d expect from your typical estate agency. When Chris fell off a ladder and landed on his back on concrete, I had no idea who to contact so I called Natalie, who was brilliant.”

The Browns are just one example of the scores of British people Ideal Homes Portugal helps to buy property in the Algarve. Ideal Homes Portugal’s portfolio of properties not only includes character homes inland of the Algarve’s beach resorts, but affordable new apartments next to the beach, including repossessions with finance available, and €1,000,000-plus villas in exclusive areas of the Algarve.

For details of property for sale in Portugal, visit the Portuguese listings on Rightmove Overseas. One way to save money when buying property in Portugal or living there is to use a currency specialist when transferring your pounds into euros. For more information on this, visit the Currency Zone.

To understand the full step-by-step process to buying a property in Portugal, collect The Overseas Guides Company’s ‘Portugal Property Buying Guide

The views and comments herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Rightmove Overseas, Rightmove Group Ltd or Rightmove Plc