Subletting is illegal in Portugal, and you are not allowed to sublet your space unless it is mentioned in the contract. In all rental contracts, subletting is only allowed in Portugal if the landlord is aware of it and has expressly agreed to the tenant doing so.
Having a written contract is mandatory and verbal rental contracts are not legally recognized in Portugal.
Furthermore, according to Decree-Law no. 47344 article 1062, you cannot charge the sub-tenant more than 20% of the amount stated in the original contract.
What is the difference between rent and sublet?
A rental agreement is a traditional contract entered between a tenant and a landlord, while a sublet occurs when a tenant needs to find a subtenant to rent their current apartment due to unforeseen circumstances.
Where can you sublet in Portugal?
Subletting can be seen mainly in Lisbon, Porto, and Faro.
You can sublet your place anywhere in Portugal, as long as the owner knows that you are subletting. Subsequently, a contract must be signed with the subtenant. And you will also have to declare this income to the IRS.
Are there illegal Subletters in Portugal?
Yes, there definitely are illegal subletters in Portugal. People sublet their place for a higher price, and the owner has no idea about it. Once the owner finds out, he/she can cancel the rental contract with the tenant, and could also complain to the Police.
Related article: Cost of living in Portugal
If there is no consent from the landlord, the sublease agreement is invalid. If, for some reason, your lease ends, so does the sublease.
Tenant Rights in Portugal
If you signed a lease for a year, it will continue for three years (unless specified in the original lease). And if you signed a lease for five years, then the lease will renew for five more.
Similarly, there are some new protections for the elderly (65 and older) and people with special needs who live on a property for more than 20 years. In these cases, the landlord must renew the lease unless they are doing major works on the property (these do not include repainting or changing the tiles)
Landlords have to respect the anti-discrimination laws. This means that tenants cannot be denied a lease based on sex, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, ancestry, language, nationality, religion, political or ideological beliefs, age, or disability.
Your landlord does not have the right to enter your home without permission. That being said, you can report them if they enter or have entered the property using their own key.
Your landlord is obligated to register the rental contract with Portal das Finanças, the official website of Portuguese tax authorities.
Landlord Rights in Portugal
A landlord can evict a tenant if they are found doing some illegal activities in the apartment.
The landlord also has the right to cancel the rental contract, if the place is being used as subletting.
Landlords can terminate the lease with 30 day notice period.
If the landlord receives any rent from the subtenant and gives him/her a payment receipt after the termination of the tenancy contract, the subtenant is to be assumed to be a direct tenant.
The landlord can increase the rent, at a maximum, once a year. The first increase may be required one year after the effective date of the contract and the following, successively, one year after the previous increase.
Know the Terminology for Apartments
The terminology used is T0, T1, T2, T3, and so on—the numbers correspond to the number of bedrooms. For example, a T1 is an apartment with one bedroom, a kitchen, a bathroom, and a living room.
A T0 is a studio apartment. If you see a +1 next to the number, such as a T3+1, this means there is an extra room with no windows.
If you have any questions regarding the subletting in Portugal, please let me know in the comment section below.
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