In a statement, Silves council says that the aim of the notice is “to help residents who wish to license prefabricated buildings, timber houses, mobile homes, containers, caravans and other related solutions”.

The council states primarily that “all these constructions are subject to prior municipal licensing of works”, however the council feels that further clarification of the laws are needed as the number of these properties increases in the municipality while ”many doubts” and an “incorrect understanding” of the law remain.

The statement draws attention to real estate agents and commercial operators who are not providing the correct information to property buyers in these situations.

“Attitudes of commercial operators selling these solutions, where they are indicating at the time of purchase that they do not require licensing, or the practice carried out by some real estate agencies, which consists in advertising the sale of rustic buildings with the mention of the possibility of the installation of buildings of these typologies, once again without the need for proper licenses, are common practices.

“This results in the misleading of property buyers who believe they are able to build on this land. The consequence is that property owners can be punished for unlawful conduct and in some cases this could result in demolition or removal orders. It is therefore, important to reiterate the fundamental points of these laws,” said the communication from the council.

In short, Silves council highlights that all buildings of this type, provided that they are intended for human use and are considered to be permanent “shall be deemed to be an urban development subject to licensing “. The note added that even removable buildings and caravans are also subject to this law if they have any permanent foundations or a concrete base.

“In addition, even in the case of mobile homes, caravans or camper vans, which do not remain in the same place over time, they are nevertheless subject to prior municipal licensing”.

Silves council concluded by asking any property owners who are concerned about the licensing of buildings, to contact them directly.