The latest RICS/Ci Portuguese Housing Market Survey shows a strengthening in sales market confidence, with forward-looking indicators showing rising optimism. Residential property prices are expected to rise modestly over the first few months of 2015.

In the sales market, the survey shows new buyer enquiries continuing to rise, extending the run of uninterrupted demand growth stretching back almost a year-and-a-half. Agreed sales increased for the 12th month in a row in December 2014.

The survey also reveals sustained growth in occupier demand in the lettings sector, coupled with a contraction in new landlord instructions. This has helped to stabilise rents and rent expectations.

“Significantly, sales expectations are the most buoyant in four years,” the index report says. “Crucially, prices are now expected to rise marginally. Although this is a positive development, we would warn against reading too much into this at the current juncture, given the still challenging economic backdrop.”