The Ferreiras move to Albert Square in 2003. Kareena Ferreira and Adi Ferreira run a clothes stall on the market, Ash starts working at the local community centre, and Ronny Ferreira earns money as a disc jockey, managed by his friend, Tariq Laroussi, whom Dan Ferreira dislikes. It transpires that Tariq is in a secret relationship with Kareena, but the Ferreiras discover this after they split up, causing further animosity between Tariq and Dan.
Dan starts a relationship with Shirley Benson, telling her that his wife, Pushpa, is dead. He takes her to a wedding as his guest, but Pushpa arrives, introducing herself and exposing Dan's lie. Shirley then breaks up with him. The Ferreiras help Shirley to deal with her neighbour from hell, Gavin Sharp, which leads to Shirley and Ash becoming close and starting a secret relationship. Shirley is unhappy that Ash refuses to tell anyone about their relationship, as he knows his father will be furious if he discovers them together. Ash reveals to Shirley that he is a compulsive gambler and he lost his house and ruined his marriage in the process; Dan had bailed him out. He says he owes his father everything and he is not willing to hurt him. Dan attempts to woo Shirley again, forcing her to confess her relationship with Ash. This causes friction between the Ferreiras, and Ash breaks up with Shirley to keep the peace.
Ronny's love life is equally unsettled. He begins dating Kelly Taylor, but ends the relationship when he discovers her past as a prostitute and begins dating Kelly's best friend, Zoe Slater. This abruptly ends when Kelly witnesses Ronny kissing another woman. Meanwhile, Adi has a romance with Sasha Perkins, a pole dancer and escort, who he initially pays to pretend to be his girlfriend. He spends a lot of time trying to impress his father but fails. Dan disappears suddenly and clears out the family's bank account, leaving his children £12,000 in mortgage arrears. The truth behind his disappearance is never revealed.
Ronny is stabbed by a gang while trying to protect Tariq and has to have his kidney removed. However, it is discovered he was born with just one and will need a kidney transplant. None of his siblings are a tissue match, so Ash, Adi and Kareena visit their mother, but her kidney is not a match either. Tariq is forced to reveal that he is Dan's son, and he donates his kidney to Ronny. He explains that he thought having a mildly romantic relationship with his half sister would bring him closer to the family. Adi dislikes the fact he and Tariq are half brothers, but mellows towards him eventually. When bailiffs arrive to evict the family from their home, they board themselves into their living room, but eventually admit defeat and move into a flat with Sasha, starting a minicab firm called Toucan Cars.
Kareena begins dating Mickey Miller, but problems arise between them when Juley Smith gives Kareena cocaine and she is seduced by him, though she manages to sort out her differences with Mickey eventually. Adi also has relationship problems after Sasha cheats on him with Danny Moon, leading to the couple's split. Gangster Johnny Allen agrees to loan several cars to the Ferreiras' business, but three of them are stolen and Johnny orders the family out of Walford immediately or face repercussions. Kareena initially opts to remain in Walford with Mickey, but at the last minute she changes her mind and departs with the rest of her family in March 2005.