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Investing in Brazilian real estate is an excellent way to make a profit for both foreign individuals and foreign corporations. The country is growing so quickly that it is now one of the strongest economies in the entire world, and people are moving there to earn a living.

Investing in real estate is relatively easy in Brazil, but it is still a lot more difficult than simply investing in stocks or foreign companies. To invest in real estate, you need to buy the land or property and make major decisions about whether or not the property will yield a high profit. Additionally, you must make sure that the property is safe and legal. Much like in the United States, real estate in Brazil must adhere to a list of building codes. Many of the codes are similar to the ones U.S citizens are used to, but there are different permits required for different types of buildings.

Particular Characteristics

Buying real estate in Brazil might not always be as simple as purchasing an existing apartment complex in mint condition, and you might have to do some serious work on a property. You should consider the different types of situations that would require specialized permits and building codes in Brazil:

  • New Construction: If you are constructing a brand new building in an empty plot of land or completely demolishing the existing building to make a new one, it is required a permit for new construction.
  • Refurbishment: In some cases, you can leave a building as is for your investment, but modify it by adding to or changing the structure. As long as you do not change the scope of the building, this would be considered refurbishment.
  • Reconstruction: Some buildings in Brazil might be in prime locations, but are completely dilapidated due to natural disasters. In this case, you might want to keep the building’s original structure, but reconstruct it to meet modern needs.
  • Small Refurbishment: As with regular refurbishment, small refurbishment is when you change the existing building to meet your needs. However, small refurbishments do not add or subtract to the property at all. An example of a small refurbishment might be changing a carpeted apartment complex so that it has hardwood floors throughout.
  • Change of Land Use: When you change the purpose of a building, you might infringe the zoning laws in place. For example, the maximum number of occupants allowed in a classroom differs from the maximum allowed in a nightclub, even if the square footage is the same. For that reason, a change in land use requires special permits and new codes.

Getting Support

When you invest in Brazilian real estate, it might actually benefit you to purchase land or buildings that are in perfect shape. You can renovate them to fit your needs and to fit the popular modern style. However, when you do so, you need to make sure you get the appropriate building codes and permits in order. Without seeking professional assistance, you could break real estate zoning laws and face serious consequences.

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