Algarve property by m2
For buyers and vendors, the use of the price/square-metre metric can be confusing. But for estate agents, for whom it forms the basis of every property valuation, it is every bit as important as it is for developers. When it comes to stand-alone properties, the use of this metric can result in some degree of confusion, especially for vendors who feel that their property may be worth X and are told by an estate agent that, based on a per-square-metre calculation, it is worth no more than Y. How, they may ask, can an agent calculate the value of one house based on the square meterage that sits on a plot of say 1,000m2 with another that sits on a plot double the size in the same area?
Any such valuation is based on the total build area of a property and not on the plot size, and this is where local market knowledge, some technology, and, yes, a little intuition can result in experienced agents providing realistic valuations.
But, in a market such as the Algarve, where the most expensive properties can be worth more than 10 times the price per square metre of the cheapest, inaccurate valuations are commonplace.
Any valuation of a stand-alone villa starts with what would be the average plot size in the area in question. So, if in a particular neighbourhood, the average plot size is, say 1,000m2, the price of an average villa could be €5,000 per square metre. This would be based on a villa of recent construction (or an older one that has been properly refurbished) of average quality. But if, for example, the property has been designed by a renowned architect and built to a higher specification whilst enjoying a prime location in that particular area, the cost per square metre can easily double. Likewise, if one villa has a larger or better plot than another, the agent will factor this into the valuation.
Agents these days have sophisticated software at their disposal that enables them to carry out market reports based on the average asking price of a similar property in any given area, which once again is based on the build size of the property but also factors in data such as plot size, whether or not the villa has sea views and so on.
Armed with this data and knowledge of what other properties in any given area have actually sold for over recent months, good estate agents are able to calculate accurate valuations.
For the purpose of this article, we are taking a two-bedroom apartment with an area of 70 to 100m2, a three-bedroom villa with a private pool and an area of 150 to 200m2and a four-bedroom villa with an area of 250 to 500m2to see what can be found in different parts of the Algarve.
Finding little gems
Small can be beautiful. Looking for a holiday home with a smaller budget does not necessarily mean making big concessions. Among the two-bedroom apartments with an area of 70 to 100m2we looked at, we found some in great coastal locations, with outstanding views.
Take a 74m2 flat in Albufeira promoted by Cerro Novo. This two-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment is on the market for €330,000, valued at €4,459 per square metre. In an elevated position above the Old Town, the apartment has outstanding sea and marina views from the spacious living room, a lawned terrace, and access to the condominium’s pool.
Cerro Novo also features a more modern and luxurious 91m2 property, just a five-minute walk from the stunning Forte de São João beach in Albufeira. Featuring two bathrooms, the two-bedroom flat is priced at €415,000, a very similar €4,560 per square metre to the previous property, with the added comfort and underground parking.
The price per square metre is similar in Carvoeiro. Fine & Country currently feature a 97m2 two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment for €440,000, valued at €4,536 per square metre. Located in the Monte Dourado resort, the property benefits from excellent facilities, including five pools, two tennis courts, and superb sea views.
Of course, the better the location and view, the higher the price. For example, a 106m2 flat in the exclusive Quinta do Lago area, currently on QP Savills’ books, is priced at €825,000, raising the price per square metre to €7,783. This spacious two-bedroom, two-bathroom ground-floor apartment is located in the popular São Lourenço Village and offers a private, enclosed garden with views of the landscaped communal gardens and the ninth fairway of the San Lorenzo golf course.
At the opposite end of the Algarve, at the Palmares Ocean Living & Golf resort, with breath-taking views of the coast over Meia Praia and Lagos Bay, a 106m2 two-bedroom apartment can go up to €850,000 raising the price per square metre to €8,019. Part of a set of luxurious properties designed by Spanish Pritzker Prize-winning RCR Arquitectes, the furnished apartment boasts modern finishes, elegant design, functional spaces and generous terraces in a spectacular setting. It includes two covered parking spaces, a storage room, an equipped kitchen and a large, covered terrace. A relatively small yet very luxurious gem.
The bigger the budget, the more privacy
Privacy comes at a price. Especially when you want a villa with a pool that you won’t have to share with your neighbours.
The size of the plot does influence the price, but what really dictates the price per square metre is the location. A small modern villa in a popular location is just as expensive, if not much more, than a big house on a large plot in the country.
For example, QP Savills has listed a 149m2 charming three-bedroom, two-bathroom country villa with a private pool on a vast 4,100m2 plot in Querença. The rustic-design house features a large open-plan sitting and dining room area with a fireplace and modern finishes and is up for grabs at €845,000, which is equivalent to €5,671 per square metre. Located in the Barrocal, the hills between the coast and the mountain, the property is in a rural and, therefore, more affordable area. However, the closer you get to the centre of the Golden Triangle and its luxurious resorts, the steeper the price gets. QP Savills also features a 215m2 three-bedroom, two-bathroom villa with a private pool on a much smaller 526m2 plot in Vale do Garrão. Nestled between Quinta do Lago and Vale do Lobo, in a dense pine area, this stylishly renovated property is priced at €1.395.000, costing €6,488 per square metre. The villa features multiple terraces, underfloor heating, a heated swimming pool and sea views from the rooftop terrace.
Just a couple of kilometres away, in Vale do Lobo, the average price per square metre for a three-bedroom villa with a pool goes up significantly. One Select Properties features a three-bedroom villa with a private pool here for €1.500.000, raising the price per square metre to €9,554. This charming traditional 157m2 house with wooden shutters has two bathrooms and sits on a 1,050m2 plot close to the Vale do Lobo Golf Club, the beach and the “Praça”, where a variety of restaurants and bars can be found.
New builds, designed by reputed architects, will fetch higher prices, such as a contemporary three-bedroom, three-bathroom, 185m2 apartment with a garden and private pool in Vilamoura. Designed by renowned Portuguese architect Vasco Vieira, this Fine & Country promoted property is selling for €1.450.000, that is €7,837 per square metre. Sitting amongst water canals and golf courses, it offers superb unobstructed views of the sea. Sold furnished, it includes dedicated concierge services, a sauna and gym, a pitch & putt golf area, a padel court, access to a communal swimming pool and private garages.
The ultimate luxury
A spacious property in a prime location with a view, be it of the sea or a lush green golf course, is the ultimate luxury. However, not all locations are created equal, and the most sought-after can be extravagantly priced.
In the Barlavento, the western part of the Algarve, Fine & Country has just sold a 300m2 four-bedroom, four-bathroom villa, with an additional 125m2 basement, for €1.890.000, valued at €6,300 per square metre (excluding the basement area). Located in Carvoeiro, the two-storey property offers a combination of traditional and modern design with the most exquisite view of the sea from the top floor and a 2,000m2 plot with an overflow pool.
If you are willing to forego the sea view, or at least see it from afar, head inland, where beautiful homes offer more tranquillity and, more often than not, superb views of the mountains.
Between Loulé and Almancil, The Crest development features a four-bedroom, four-bathroom 405m2 villa for €2.100.000, valued at €5,185 per square metre. Listed by One Select Properties, the property sits on a 937.5m2 plot with a private pool. Set in an attractively landscaped neighbourhood, it includes a fully fitted modern kitchen, spacious living areas, a laundry room, a wine cellar and a large garage.
Now, a brand-new modern property of a similar size in Vila Sol is valued at €6,498 per square metre. Although it has one less bathroom, this modern property is inching closer to the Golden Triangle, where prices inflate. This 454m2 four-bedroom, three-bathroom villa listed for €2.950.000 by QP Savills, sits on a 1,136m2 plot with a beautiful private garden and a heated pool. Its contemporary and functional design includes a spacious, open-plan living room along with double-height ceilings and large windows opening onto covered terraces.
At the top of our range of selected properties, the value of the most luxurious real estate can go up to €14,436 per square metre, for a 346m2 four-bedroom, four-bathroom villa in Vale do Lobo, on a 1,164m2 plot, listed by QP Savills for €4.995.000. This luxurious property, designed by architect Vasco Vieira, benefits from a southwest aspect, allowing it to be soaked in the sun all day, all year long. Classically designed, it features several terraces giving onto a beautiful lawn, surrounded by large pine trees, and has views of the golf course and the sea. Inside, a modern kitchen, open-concept living and dining areas, large bedrooms and bathrooms with plenty of natural light create an airy and sophisticated ambience.
And finally, at the centre of Quinta do Lago, the most coveted resort for peace, tranquillity and exclusivity in the Algarve, Quinta do Lago Real Estate has a 490m2, four-bedroom villa can set you back €6.700.000, that is €13,673 per square metre. This opulent villa sits beautifully in the gardens of a very generous 2,400m2 elevated plot overlooking the San Lorenzo golf course. The large, heated pool is ideal for all seasons, and the superb extensive outdoor dining covered area is perfect for entertaining friends and family. Its luxurious facilities include a fully equipped gym and sauna area, a garage and a carport.
With this exercise, we can conclude that what your budget will enable you to get really depends on your preferences and priorities. Are you looking for space, a view or exclusivity? Ranging from €4,459 per square metre, for a 74m2 two-bedroom flat in Albufeira, to over €14,000 per square metre, for a 346m2 four-bedroom villa in Vale do Lobo, the Algarve has a property for every type of buyer.
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