10+ Places to Rent Accommodation in Lisbon

By | Last updated: July 28, 2020

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Every month, people from all over the world come to Lisbon to visit, to stay temporarily, or to put down permanent roots.

Regardless of whether you’re just visiting Lisbon for a few days, or thinking about staying here long-term, this guide will help you find the perfect room, apartment, or house for your stay.

Short Term (Less than 30 Days)

If you’re just visiting Portugal for a few days or a few weeks, there are rentals for every need and just about every kind of budget.

Airbnb

For short-term apartment and room rentals, Airbnb is the predominant website. Yes, there are other sites out there – like Wimdu, VRBO, and Homeaway – but none tend to beat Airbnb on price or the number of homes they offer.

Booking.com

Although Booking.com tends to focus more on hotels, it does list plenty of rooms and entire apartments that you can rent as well. There are nowhere near as many apartments and houses as Airbnb, but it’s definitely worth a look.

Plum Guide

Sites like Airbnb and Booking contain both luxury and budget-friendly rentals, but Plum Guide only focuses on the higher end of the market. If you’re looking for a special apartment for a special occasion, or if you just want to avoid the cheaper hit and miss options, Plum Guide could be the perfect site to begin your search.

Medium-Term (1-6 Months)

While there are plenty of websites that focus on short-term rentals, and plenty of real estate agents and services that focus on long-term rentals, medium-term rentals are much, much harder to find – especially reasonably-priced ones. Thankfully, things are becoming a little more flexible.

Airbnb

Airbnb is designed for short-term rentals, but many hosts set discounted monthly prices if you stay 28 days or more – sometimes 50% or more. These prices are unlikely to be as cheap as a standard rental lease, but often they can be quite reasonable for a 1-2 month stay. And, you can always try to haggle and bring the price does as well.

Spotahome

Spotahome is an Airbnb-style website that actually focuses on medium and long-term rentals, and it’s aiming to improve the entire rental experience – particularly the process of finding an apartment. Unlike listings on classifieds websites or Facebook, their listings all have plenty of photos, video tours, are verified by a home checker, and many have reviews from previous tenants as well.

It’s ideal for people who want to want to book a medium-term room or apartment before they get to Lisbon rather than have to look for one when they get here.

Read reviews and a more detailed write-up of Spotahome.

Nomadx

NomadX is similar to Spotahome, but it focuses on digital nomads or remote professionals – people who are able to travel around and work from home. This means that the rooms and apartments on their website typically contain good wifi and essential work-from-home features like desks and office chairs.

Read reviews and a more detailed write-up of NomadX.

Uniplaces

Uniplaces a Lisbon-based startup which primarily focuses on student accommodation (although non-students can rent through the site as well). It lists thousands of rooms and apartments across Lisbon, Porto, and Faro, as well as other European cities like Milan, Paris, and Berlin.

The site is easy to use, and it allows you to filter through the results depending on your needs (places with wifi, air conditioning, or central heating, for example).

Read reviews and a more detailed write-up of Uniplaces. A number of the reviews we’ve received about Uniplaces have been negative.

Long Term Lettings (6+ Months)

Estate Agents (Realtors)

There are lots of letting agents in Lisbon, with two of the biggest being Century21 and Remax.

Classifieds Websites

Most properties, particularly those that are rented by a landlord rather than a letting agent, find their way onto classifieds websites like olx.pt Idealista.pt. There are also several others like sapo.pt, imovirtugal, and custojusto, but OLX and Idealista are generally considered to be the biggest.

What about Craiglist and other more international sites? Well, while you will find properties on there, a lot tend to be scams. The same goes for expatriates.com.

Facebook Groups

There are a number of Facebook groups dedicated to apartments and rooms for rent in Lisbon such as:

If anything, Facebook groups and Facebook Marketplace are now more popular than classifieds websites.

Erasmusu

Erasmusu is another student-focused website that seems to allow professionals. It’s not as easy to filter listings as Uniplaces is, but worth looking at as it has quite a few properties — both sharing and private apartments.

Other Websites

The following sites aren’t particularly big, but could be worth a look if you don’t find anything else.

  • LisbonApartments.com has some monthly rentals with internet included (some also include utilities). Prices for a 1-bedroom apartment start at around €800 per month, not including bills.
  • Sabbatical Homes is a website that’s primarily aimed at academics, but is open to everyone. It usually has around 20+ properties listed, which isn’t a huge number, but it’s always worth looking at. Because these are other people’s homes you’re renting, as opposed to standard rentals, they’re usually very nicely decorated.
  • Red Apple Apartments focus on ‘corporate lettings,’ and apartments tend to cost between €1500 and €2500 per month (bills included). It’s too expensive for most people visiting Lisbon, but maybe not for everyone.
  • Expat.com sometimes has apartments in Lisbon for rent, although it’s usually just a few at a time. I’ve looked at other expat websites like Angloinfo in the past, but never had much luck. You will find one or two people letting properties on there, and maybe you’ll find the one, but don’t expect much more than that.

Know of any other places to find long-term rentals in Lisbon? Let other visitors know in the comments below. We also have articles which discuss renting in Porto and The Algarve as well. 

46 thoughts on “10+ Places to Rent Accommodation in Lisbon”

  1. Hi, James!

    First of all, congrats for this piece!

    Secondly, what do you think of a guide for spotting and avoiding scams when renting for a long term? I’ve seen readers here interested in the long term rentals, but unfortunately unaware of the traps they face. Me and my family were these unsuspicious expats who had been trapped in such a scam for more than half a year.

    Let me know if you think there’s a story here for portgalist.com.

    All the best,
    Bogdan

    Reply
  2. Hi Patricia,

    I can tell you from my experience living in the Barcelona area for 2 years now that if someone dreams of finding an apartment here or in the Lisbon area easily and with a reasonable price, there is a lot to work on and a lot to be lucky. Full time job, specially in Barcelona area, and it seems to be same in Lisbon area.

    I am moving because of work to Lisbon in May and I am skimming through all possible pages now for a month and I can say that if it was difficult to find an apartment in the Barcelona area, so one is an impossible task in front of Lisbon at a reasonable cost level. Especially because of the tax number in Portugal and also in the Barcelona area because of the NIE.

    A hopeless corner when those already in the country are looking for the same housing. Really all the time after work you can spend every day on that thing.

    In addition, must take into account all kinds of scam companies operating remotely, because often I have come across the fact that not all homes are not even there.

    Reply
  3. Hi,
    This was absolutely the most helpful site we’ve visited! We are from the US and in the early stages of applying for a D7 visa. We’d like to find a rental for 6 months from October 2020 to February 2021 to meet the visa requirement and the sites you mentioned will help us accomplish our goal. Do you think it’s too early to find a property for October 1 move-in?

    We can’t decide if it’s more economical to rent unfurnished or furnished and we’re leaning toward the Lisbon area. The furniture stores you mentioned were very helpful and we visited some of the sites. I can’t find any vendor that rents furniture. Any ideas for that?

    On a different note, it’s our understanding that the D7 visa requires proof of a Portugal residence such as a 6 month lease, purchase of property, etc. If we sign a lease and the visa isn’t granted, what happens to a deposit or other money that has been paid? We greatly exceed the financial requirements and don’t expect any issues or hurdles. But, governments do strange things sometimes and we’d like to know our options.

    Reply
    • Hi Patricia,

      Thanks for the kind comments about Portugalist.

      I’m not sure how successful you will be if you try to rent a property now for an October move-in. A lot of people have said that it’s quite difficult to get responses from letting agents and landlords unless you’re in the country and ready to move in.

      The exception would be something like Spotahome or even Airbnb. You would also need to check whether the contract/lease they provide is suitable.

      For a 6-month rental, it would definitely be more economical to rent a furnished apartment. Personally I would probably rent a furnished place until you work out whether you want to live in Portugal and also where you want to live. Buying and moving furniture can end up being a hassle, and maybe it’s best to wait until you know where you’ll be living long term. I don’t know anywhere that rents furniture. Maybe there’s just not the market for it here in Portugal.

      Your last question is a good one, and I’m not really quite what the answer is. It might depend on the landlord or letting agent and how understanding they are (obviously you would need to explain the situation in advance).

      Spotahome and Airbnb both have very flexible cancellation policies (with Airbnb you can just change the dates of a long term rental to anything more than 28 days and you won’t incur any fees). Obviously these will be more expensive than renting normally, but it’s another reason to consider looking at them.

      Reply
    • Hi Rupinder,

      Take a look at the websites mentioned in the article. I don’t have any properties personally (I just write a blog about Portugal).

      Reply
  4. Hello
    I am from Iran I am 27 year old and and I am Phd student and apply from IST university in Lisboa and I am going to be there 11 Novamber. I have a pet ( little dog shitzhu cross) and I want to have my private room in apartmant share.
    My prices for per month ( 200-300€)
    Best wishes
    Pegah Rashidi

    Reply
  5. Thank you for the article. Has anyone worked with Spotahome or RedApple? I am looking to switch from airbnb to a local alternative to airbnb or medium-or long-term rentals. I beg to differ on the tax issue–all in taxes are almost the same when renting via Alojamento Local or long-term. Yes, tax gets applied only to 50% of your gross income, but net income truly is close to 50% when you have an agent and not counting your own time. The landlord needs to pay 6% VAT which they don’t actually charge the client). It comes out about even on taxes and short-term lets are so much work, mostly because of the Portuguese bureaucracy. Vat receipts need to be sent to them within days of each rental and monthly declarations made of fees paid to airbnb (modelo 30), plus there is quarterly VAT filing, the worst of that being obligatory reports of invoices airbnb sends (reverse charge mechanism). Basically you need to compile hundreds of receipts of 3 euro each from the airbnb website. That is why I am considering switching to medium or long-term letting after 2 years of AL. What drove me over the brink was airbnb adding its own layer of bureaucracy. After I dutifully requested modelo RF-21 from them–which I newly discovered was an obligation on my part–so that I would not have to with-hold taxes from airbnb on the fees they charge me (sic!!), they then made my life miserable by requesting I send that form back to them with my information–this is surely something that their agent made up and I resented it after years of dealing with the Portuguese bureaucracy. Airbnb even froze my ability to accept reservations after I did not send them back the form, and impossible to get through to anyone or hold anyone accountable. Curious if everyone else is giving up on AL…

    Reply
    • Hi Caroline, You views on airbnb short term renting versus more long term rent are very interesting. We bought an apartment in Lisbon, with the objective to generate an income via short term rent (airbnb or booking.com). However now the area, where the apartment is located has been made a ‘restrictive’ area from the City Hall, meaning that no short term lettings are allowed. (we have not yet received the licence!!!)
      We’re travelling to Lisbon next week to meet various agencies to hear their advice.
      Maybe we are not so bad off anyway with the prospects of long-term rent as we thought.

      Reply
  6. I’m thinking of moving to Lisbon. It’s a great base for my work, which has me doing lots of travel in Europe to various corporate offices. I’m sick of living out of hotels all the time.

    Can I sign a long term lease? And then simply Airbnb my place during the time I’m away?

    My current city, Los Angeles, allows me to do that. Do I need a special agreement with landlords? Or is that totally okay? I’ll be there 70 percent of the time.

    Just the rest of the time, I’ll be gone for weeks.

    Reply
    • Hi Khanh,

      I don’t think there should be a problem with you doing that.

      The only issue you might have is that your future landlord or letting agent might ask for someone in Portugal who can be your guarantor. That can be difficult when you first move to Portugal.

      If the landlord or agent is doing everything above board, you will probably also need a NIF. You may also need a Portuguese bank account, if you need to pay bills like the electricity. Both of those things are possible for you to get.

      Reply
    • Hi
      Jena here is Tino (your long time friend from Madeira )
      In which area is your flat and what kind of flat is i might be interested in seeing .

      Reply
  7. Hi James
    Your notes were very helpful and well researched.
    I am travelling to Lisbon with my emotional support bichon. It is very difficult to rent an apartment with my dog, but I have one for the first 4 weeks.

    Reply
    • Hi Georgette,

      Thanks for the kind words. I do my best 🙂

      That’s great that you’ve managed to get one for 4 weeks.

      Are you trying to rent “normally” or medium-term through Airbnb? I’ve heard from some pet owners that it can be worth contacting the people on Airbnb that say they don’t allow pets as many will make an exception.

      Reply
  8. Hello all need house on rent for 4 people. 1 couple and 2mens. If anyone have any links let me know please thanks

    Reply
  9. Hi
    I am actually in Lisbon now looking for complete furnished apartment for one year or more , including air condition if possible, either elevator or first floor ,in Lisbon, ready to go inn immediately.
    If you have a phone number I will call you .
    Near Lisbon second .

    Reply
    • Hi George,

      I’d recommend getting in contact with a letting agent to discuss your needs. This is just a travel blog.

      James

      Reply
  10. This information is very helpful. I am moving to Portugal to retire in mid August. I have opted for a very small town just south of Porto called Espinho . I was wondering if you could recommend an agency to find an apartment
    Thanks
    Doris

    Reply
    • Hi Doris,

      I don’t have one that I can recommend, sorry.

      I hope the move to Espinho goes well. If you have any more questions, don’t hesitate to ask.

      Reply
  11. Hi James!
    Great and thorough article!

    What would be the areas or properties of Lisbon mainly housed by expats or long term foreigners?

    Reply
    • Hi Janis,

      Anywhere close to the city centre and that’s nice. Alcântara, Campo de Ourique, Estrella, and Graça all seem to have a lot of English-speaking expats. Arroios seems to be very multicultural, and popular with other nationalities like Brazilians. You’ll find expats in just about every neighbourhood, but the nicer neighbourhoods near the city centre tend to have big concentrations of expats.

      Cascais, near Lisbon, is also a big expat hub.

      Reply
  12. Hey James, thanks for this, most comprehensive explainer I’ve seen so far! How far in advance would you say it’s possible to find a place? As in, would most places expect you to move in within the week or is it possible to find somewhere a few months ahead of time?

    Reply
    • Hi Victoria,

      Thanks for the kind words about the article.

      It does seem like the majority are advertised when they’re actually available rather than ahead of time. I’m sure there are exceptions to that, but I think this is the case in a lot of places and not just Portugal. This seems to be especially true when someone is just renting a room.

      A lot of people come to Lisbon and rent somewhere short-term (e.g. Airbnb) while they’re looking. This is normally cheaper and easier to do during the winter months, if you have the ability to choose when you arrive. Otherwise, you may have to stay a little further out while you look for somewhere to live.

      Reply
  13. Wonderful article! So thorough.
    I wish to rent in central Lisbon for 1 or 2 months. I will be traveling with my 5lb Certified Emotional Support Service Dog. In the US landlords must allow my dog. What is the case in Portugal?

    Reply
    • Hi Betty,

      Thanks for the kind comments.

      From speaking with other pet owners, I think it’s quite hard to rent with a dog here. I don’t know whether special allowances are given to emotional support dogs.

      Hopefully someone else who knows a little more about this can comment.

      Reply
      • Hi James
        I was just about to ask what you know of the new ruling that landlords are not allowed to refuse pets?! I’ve heard rumours but can’t establish them as 100% true yet.
        We have not had any problem so far with landlords accepting our dog – but we’re now desperately searching for something more permanent and affordable, as the Airbnb host who agreed to our dog staying in our room is now claiming that it’s hampering the (constant!) viewings of his house that’s for sale (never advised or agreed to).

        I’m hoping that the generally easy acceptance of pets so far (the first house we rented was furnished with leather couches and the landlord didn’t even bat an eye!) means that it will not become a problem – and I’m sure an emotional support dog would be even more probable.

        Reply
        • Hi Janine,

          Sorry to hear about your Airbnb problems. I’ve heard of a few people who are in rentals that are being sold and it’s a similar story.

          I’m not sure as it’s difficult to find information on this. I know there was a ruling with regards to restaurants, but I couldn’t find any info about rentals.

          Even if this non-discrimination ruling exists, I don’t see what’s to stop the landlord choosing other tenants. It would take quite a lot of work on the potential tenant’s part to prove it was because of the pets. Maybe I’m missing something here, but not sure how this would change things too much.

          Reply
  14. Hello James,

    We have a house in Lisbon and we are looking for an agency to manage the property.

    Do you have any suggestions?

    Thank you:)
    Sena

    Reply
    • Hi Ryan,

      My advice would be to look at some of the Facebook groups mentioned above, classifieds websites like OLX or idealista, and to contact real estate companies.

      James

      Reply

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