The storms in recent days caused floods and landslides, submerging entire neighbourhoods and sending homes tumbling down hillsides in the states of Minas Gerais, Espirito Santo and Rio de Janeiro.
Rains subsided by Monday, but were expected to resume later this week in some areas. Flooded roads created violent rapids, sweeping up victims, cars and other debris.
Those evacuated were being housed in makeshift shelters in churches, schools and fire stations. Local authorities have asked for donations of clothes, sheets and mattresses for the victims.
A state of emergency has also been declared in Minas Gerais state.