Renting an Apartment in Brazil - Legal damages

Hello everyone! I would like to seek your advice. I have been living in Brazil for 14months. I obtained my permanent residency through common-law.

Now, my partner and I are renting an apartment for 1,600 reais. Few months after we moved there, they started the renovation in the condominium. We were informed late and was never informed properly about the timeline of the renovation. The renovation covers only the exterior of the building: removing paint, leveling and extracting an inch in the wall, cementing, painting. So you can imagine the hassle of the renovation, it started december last year and until now it is not finish.

I dont have work so I stayed in the house most of the time exposed to dirt and extreme noise. We tried to complain to the owner and manager of the building but they dont care.

Now we are on a medical leave and we are considering of finding a new apartment when we returned. The owner however wanted to enter the apartment while we are away. It seems the renovation needed to remove the airconditioner to continue the renovation (we were not informed about it). We told the manager that we are returning only on the 3rd week of August. He accuses us that we are making problem with the renovation schedule. And if we dont allow him to enter we will he sued.

I need your advise as I am not familiar with the law system in terms of housing and rental.

Will greatly appreciate your feedback. Thank you

I'm not a lawyer, but I doubt very much that you can deny the owner reasonable access that is required to complete a renovation of the entire condominium that is now in progress. 
If your partner has a relative or a friend who can be present in the apartment for the removal (and presumably, replacement) of the air conditioner while you're away, that would be ideal.  If not, can you arrange with your landlord for the air conditioner to be removed just before you leave, and be re-installed just after your return?  If neither of these options is realistic, all you can probably do is to remove anything pilferable or easily damaged from the apartment to a safe place, like your in-laws', and hope for the best.
It sounds like your relationship with the manager and/or owner has become rather confrontational.  As you're finding, that is not a comfortable position for a foreigner in Brazil to occupy.  If you can use this disagreement to smooth things over, it will be to your benefit.  If you feel that the relationship is too far gone to be saved, then looking for a new apartment is a good idea,  and should be a top priority for you when you return.

You cannot deny entry or repair to the owner's property. I purchase an apartment in Curitiba and the rules allow the owners of the building to do what is needed for their building. I lived with the issues due to I was sure the upgrades would increase my value.
You need to read the rental agreement and I would be surprised if there was no clause that the owner did not have rights to access and or repairs.
You could hire an attorney, but it will be costly.
Renter's rights are limited.
Good luck

@iengrtan Dont know on this part but as per a friend who works with Quinto Andar , no landlord can make you vacate the apartment even if you don't pay the rent. He told me about 2 cases where the renter lost jobs in covid and are now staying rent free with pandencia in Justica.

Eviction procedure has changed as of the end of last year.

It's on the books now, one eviction notice served, and you are out. Landlords can petition immediate eviction after a single notice, and tenant must be vacant in  15-30 days.  Repeat offenders, it's a 48 hour boot.   This was a Bill that got voted into Law in the Congress and Senate.

So pay your rent on time, and make sure not damage is done to the landlord's property.

Also, since all contracts are written in Portuguese, you are solely responsible for what you signed off.  Your claims of language bias will lead you nowhere.  You might seek to a certified translator, at your burden and expense, to get your contract ratified in English.

The fact a broker, like myself, can write and read English, means diddle squat. You will need to rubber stamp the contract to make it valid. Otherwise, is the Portuguese Written Contract the default one, for the sake of legal disputes. 

Co-Signers are no longer held  to the lease after the lease term is expired or due for renewal. Tenants can change co-signers from now on.

And in closing, tenants are on the hook for Rental, Condo Association Dues, and Property Taxes. If you have your CPF, rest assured some landlords will send a claim against your ID,
This is an old post, but it comes do my domain of expertise, so i will chime in, so others can read it. 

I have no Law Degree nor practice tenancy law, just your real estate broker, no less. 

1.if these are building renovations, and the residential units within are owned by separate condominium owners, your only resort is to bring your grievances to the condominium association.   

2.if these are unit renovations, the unit's owner had to give you a notice to vacate, so that he or she could contract renovation work, unless he or she is performing a perfunctory overdue maintenance job.

When fully renovations are set to be done, it is presumed that  the units is either going to be rented to someone else other than yourself, or are being prepped to be sold, or they have already been sold. 

If the unit was to be sold, or has been sold, you are entitled , by law, to exercise your option to buy, with a refusal deadline of 30 days.  Granted, you have been keeping payments current on rent, tax, and condo association dues.  Default in any of these components are grounds for eviction proceedings. 

If the building has a sole owner ( either as a Fee Simple Ownership structure or as a Condo Ownership where the owner/company/family has ownership in all units ),  the owner party enjoys protection to make all renovations it sees fit, granted it has  provided  you with ample notice. 

Bringing your grievance to the "condo association" will fall into deaf ears. 

Major renovations not made indoors, at your unit, as a nuisance they  might be, you are going to eat crow.   At best, you can use it as an escape clause to break your lease contract and move elsewhere. 

Go where you are welcomed.

Yes, I understand it sucks, shelling out money for deposit, insurance, endure apartment hunting, moving day blues....

There is a reason why Brazilians rather buy to rent ( other than the fact they typically tear the place apart as if was theirs to suit their renovating tastes ).

But that is how things work out here.
And folks, please....

Watch out for these e-platforms , whom I shall not name here. 

Do yourself a favor, and plug in the name of the platform you are searching through ,and read the complaint posts about it. 

The thread lists tend to be long, so watch for repeat patterns as to spot the most common gripes. Make sure to have Google translate handy, and plug the name into  ( translates as complain here dot com. dot br ). 

And yes,  Brazilians complain a lot, and in many cases, not for reasonable reasons, so they are to be taken with grain of salt. Hence why you need to check for repeat patterns on complaint posts. 

A decent reliable licensed broker, for all it is worth, that is willing to work with you is a must. And if you can,  get a local broker, with knowledge of the local market.  Many Real Estate Agencies actually have a dedicated staffer for rentals,  and others for sales.  All it takes is to ask around, and drop by their offices.

Should I remind you all,  at least in Sao Paulo, hardly any listings are exclusive nowadays.  A resourceful broker can forsake his half of the fee to land you on the right spot, or to locate the owner through the back door. 

This is , after all, a people's business. No platform can replace the diligence of getting things right for you. 
Rank in file in these organizations are let go at all times ( specially now, by the hundreds , since cheap money won't bankroll these seat of the pants operations  as they once did ), nobody is going to carry the torch for you.

If a broker is passionate about taking good  photos, chasing listings, visiting properties, and actually is a study in tenancy laws, and owner's . then he or she is a good starter, nowithstanding language barriers.

Yes, most of them out here can hardly describe a property with colour, as we have stateside for the high end stuff.