It is strongly recommended that you give power of attorney to a (Cape-Verdean) lawyer / sollicitor to assist and represent you in the process of buying a property in Cabo Verde.
- Brief overview of the legal process.After choosing the property and prior to acquisition, a Property Registration Certificate (Certidão de Registo Predial) should be requested from the Land Registry Office (Conservatória do Registo Predial), containing a description of the property and any restrictions on the title. It is also advisable to confirm from the competent Municipal Council (Câmara Municipal) whether or not the property has a habitation licence (in the case of an urban property, or the localisation map of the property (in the case of a plot of land for construction) and the property’s fiscal patrimonial value.
- Check the payment of tax regarding the property, and bills for electricity and other services by asking the vendor to produce evidence of payment of such invoices.
- Obtain a tax card.
- Sign the Promissory Contract of Purchase and Sale (Contrato Promessa de Compra e Venda). At this stage the purchaser will normally be expected to pay a deposit, which is negotiable (10-30% is common practice). In Cabo Verde, the parties are contractually bound on signature of this Promissory Contract of Purchase and Sale, which sets out the terms of the transaction - property details, price, method of payment, completion date, warranties, penalties etc. This contract should be signed before a Notary Public in Cabo Verde.
- Sign the final Deed of Conveyance (Escritura) before a Notary Public in Cabo Verde. This is the document that gives the purchaser proper title to the property. Payment of the Property Tax [IUP - imposto único sobre o património] respecting the transfer is required.
- Register the purchase at the local Land Registry and local Municipal Authority so that title is enforceable against third parties