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Buying a Property in Brazil – Do It Yourself or Hire a Lawyer?

It usually comes down to how familiar you are with Brazil and how much you are paying for your property. People with solid connections with locals may rely on trustworthy realtors to help with some of the acquisition steps. This may be enough for smaller acquisitions, such as lots in the coastal areas of Brazil. Investors who don’t have such networking or are buying higher-amount properties, such as a condo in Sao Paulo, should retain a lawyer.

A lawyer may assist with specific parts or the totality of a transaction. For a lawyer to review the Purchase and Sale Contract and advise on the main aspects of your purchase may cost as little as USD 1,000. On the other hand, a lawyer retained to handle the entire purchase process on your behalf (e.g.: even attending the closing on your behalf) will usually cost you from 4 % to 5% of the property value.

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Purchase from major developers in Brazil could also require less lawyer support since they are usually more established than individual sellers, thus resulting in less risk. Purchase from private sellers, on the other hand, represents more risk and justifies more money spent on legal services.