The new legislation is designed to free up rents that have often been frozen for decades.
President Aníbal Cavaco Silva has signed a new property rental law into effect that is designed to guarantee contractual stability and social protection for the most vulnerable members of society.
However, the new legislation that frees up rents sometimes frozen for decades has caused a sharp divergence of opinions.
Speaking for the Lisbon Association of Property Owners, Luís de Menezes Leitão said the rental law “a step in the right direction” even though it was “a very timid step.”
Leitão pointed out that the legislation still provided countless exceptions to the planned “fast-track” tenant removal system in conjunction with what he called “a prolonged transitional period”. He added that the Association still backed the legislation as “the new law is far better than the existing law.”
For the main opposition Socialist Party, the law represents little more than “fuel for the social contract fire”, the party’s parliamentary vice-president José Carlos Mota Andrade said.
Andrade pointed out that the coalition government did not take into account Socialist proposals to extend the transitional period and incorporate the actual physical condition of the property into third party evaluations of the rent payable.
Andrade added he understood why the president had called for clarification over outstanding concerns and that this was a clear warning over the societal impact of the law.