The Azores islands, located in the Mid-Atlantic are a group of 9 islands belonging to Portugal and are located about 90 minutes plane ride from the Capital of Portugal, Lisbon. Here they say time stands still with a quaint agriculture based society and modern Europe flair intertwine to create these magical densely populated islands. The Azores has recently become a tourist destination for international travellers with many new hotels and restaurants being opened throughout the island, while still preserving the nature and unique lifestyle of these small islands. The Azores has a population of 250,000 with 140,000 of those residents living on the island of Sao Miguel. The Azores are known for their unique beauty, preserved culture and ancient traditions that make this a year round favorite for travellers and vacation homeowners alike.
The 9 islands of the Azores are all very unique and all value the common bond of preservation and Nature. The Islands are as follows: Santa Maria, Sao Miguel, Terceira, Sao Jorge, Faial, Pico, Graciosa, Horta & Flores. Each one of these islands can be whatever you want to make them as long as you have the love of nature in your veins since these islands are very isolated being located in the Mid-Atlantic and although the land of eternal spring it can become slightly chilly in the winter months with rain being the common theme of the winter. That is how all the island flourish with their unique flora with the delicate balance of sunlight, fertile volcanic soil and the perfect amount of rain.
If you are deciding on getting a second home in the Azores or a vacation rental then their are some things you may want to consider before purchasing or building your dream property in paradise. The Azores islands are part of the Euro-Zone region and is the western most part of the region. The transformation of the Euro from the Escudo in the early 2000’s have led to a titter-totter effect on the local population with many things increasing in price relative to the past Escudo. However this has allowed a real estate market to thrive where housing values also have gone up. The homeowners before the transformation to the Euro benefited greatly from now selling there homes or properties in Euro’s allowing the price to be higher, however the same is true for purchasing a home, the property is now sold in Euro’s making it harder and more expensive for the locals to be able to move out and buy their own home in early adulthood.
Banks in Portugal after the financial crisis are more reluctant to lend to buyers with unstable or less than good credit. Any member of the Euro-Zone partnered countries can qualify to buy a home in the Azores with records of employment and a minimal down-payment of 20%. There is much room to negotiate on the a substantial amount of the inventory on the housing market due to supply and demand and the fact that many properties due to an aging population are becoming available for sale from heirs of the properties that have emigrated or have their own homes. Those interested from other regions of the world such as USA and Canada can also buy and build homes however if you are not paying cash or able to arrange your own financing you might need to get a lawyer in helping to ensure all proper steps are followed according to local and regional regulations.
The Azores being a region that thrives on many solar, wind and by hydro-electric means has only increased the islands ideals for self-preservation and many local towns and even some islands are powered 100% by sustainable natural means; the island of Graciosa being one of them.
The Azores are a safe eco friendly group of islands, where the people and the land live hand in hand. It is a great place to get off the beaten path and relax with countless natural hot water volcanic pools, crystal clear lagoons and safe clean beaches. This is becoming a place for those who just want to get away and enjoy Mother Nature and all her glory. A safe place to retire and very accessible to both North America and mainland Europe by daily flights leaving with numerous airlines flying both in and out of the region. A modern-day health sector with hospitals located on all of the 9 islands are making these a new favorite with the baby boomers who want peace of mind and security in their retirement.
A short 4 hour direct flight out of Boston and 5 hours from Toronto make these islands an escape in Paradise where you can go and enjoy your second home or vacation home and relax whenever you want knowing you have access daily to both the Europe and North America.