ITexperts We own the property at the end of this month August.
We paid a 5000 euro deposit to the estate agent. This took the property off the market for 20 days, in which time we could do all our checks. This was refundable if we changed our minds or found something wrong. We then paid the 10% prommisory note which meant we had made a full commitment to buy. This meant if we changed our minds the 10% deposit would be lost, however if the seller changed their mind they had to pay us double. This is Portuguese law. The initial 5000 euros is more like a gentleman's agreement and the seller could change their mind but you would get your initial deposit back. We made our 10% deposit cheque payable to the sellers solicitor. In PT the money goes direct to the seller, not like the Uk where the solicitor holds the money until completion.
Regarding the surveyor . Richard Kale is his name , very professional and English. He gave us a 17 page report on the property and made some suggestions on minor issues. I gather he only works in the Algarve though/ Would fully recommend.
Lawyers Be very careful there. We used a friends recommendation and found out he was not the best , check their costs first before agreeing CONTRACT.
This guy Chris Tamblyn was a main helper 0351 968721152 He's English lives in the Algarve for over 20 years true gentleman . If you see a villa Chris will go out to it, film it looking for faults, he works for you and does not charge,
Good luck with your search