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Guide to Living and Teaching English in Brazil

June 25, 2013


Initially, you may find yourself in a pousada, which in Portuguese means a "place to land" or "place to stay." The term refers to a wide range of independently-run accommodation, from small B&Bs, guesthouses, ecolodges, to sophisticated boutique hotels.

At the top end of the accommodation market you have areas like Rio de Janeiro's Zona Sul, where a small one-bed apartment will set you back a minimum of R$1500 a month. In such coveted neighborhoods as Ipanema or Leblon, that figure rises to R2500. Usually the landlord will pay the building tax or IPTU (which is based on the square footage of the apartment) but you'll still have to cough up the condominium service charge.

Considering a national average for a mid-size city, a small kitnet (studio apartment) will set you back around R$500 per month, a 1-bed apartment about R$1000 and a 3-bed house would be about R$2500. Plus in some cases the obligatory IPTU tax.

Purely for comparison purposes (and maybe give you something to aim for) an upscale two-bedroom expat apartment in São Paulo would be more than R$4500 per month, while you can expect to pay anything up to R$22,000 or more for a casa, or family home. The latter of course will usually provide amenities to match the price as well as accommodation for staff.

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