Given UK real estate prices out of range for so many first-time homebuyers and owners yearning for a summer house in the tropics, the prospect of buying an Italian villa for 86p is alluring.
Many small Italian cities have made news in recent years for listing off vacant homes for €1 each.
But how would the program operate, and who gets to buy one of these sun-drenched cheap homes?
Why are properties in Italy being sold for €1?
Plenty of Italy’s most beautiful rural towns have become deserted, with tiny, ageing people that are starting to die out, as younger Italians growingly move to the city and prefer urban careers above rural and community careers.
Some older Italians also faced themselves with no one else to leave their home to, after all having given it to the local government, which must determine what to do about it, whereas others have acquired properties in locations they do not want to move to.
Because owning a second property in Italy entails tax payments, it may be more profitable to sell these idle homes than to keep them.
As a result, nearly 24 Italian towns are offering an irresistible offer to potential homeowners: property for the nominal sum of €1.
The idea is that having these properties renovated and occupied in the coming years will be more valuable to the cities than selling these for full price.
Local governments in Emilia-Romagna, Abruzzo, as well as Campania also are hoping that a surge of new property owners will improve the economy by purchasing local food, hiring local engineering workers, investing in small shows and sights, and even boosting tourism by opening hotel brands or B&Bs.
Is there a catch?
The houses chosen for the plan are generally old and in need of major structural upgrades, so you won’t be buying a brand-new villa. You’re buying a fixer-upper rather than a ready-to-move-in house.
Although, renovation costs are still modest in comparison to other nations, ranging from €20,000 to €50,000 based on the scale of the home.
While most of the houses are modest village villas or houses, several grand homes are also for sale, at a relatively high price. The bidders estimate that necessary modifications to this old monastery south of Bologna will cost €1.5 million.
Despite that, legal expenses for owning a place in another country can cost at least to €3,000, as well as some towns, charge a “guarantee fee” (ranging from €1,000 to €10,000 based on the municipality as well as the price of the rehabilitation project) to show you’re serious about renovating the home.
On the plus side, purchasers in Italy are eligible for a ‘super bonus’ tax break that pays 110 per cent of qualified building costs.
You won’t be capable of making false promises about renovating your new board in the long run, either: new owners must submit ideas of a major renovation between two to 12 months after buying (based on region), begin work within a year, and finish it within 3 years.
It also is worth remembering because not every house is sold for one euro. Many popular properties have sparked bidding wars, with some fetching €5,000 and also €20,000.
As a result, this is a strategy for those who may have some money saved up in addition to the initial €1.
Who can afford to purchase a one-euro home?
It’s not a joke, though. The rules vary depending on the town, however in Mussomeli, buyers must have the financial and practical means to:
- All expenses involved with the writing of the acts of sale will be covered (notary, registration, transfer)
- Create a remodelling plan for the house within a year after buying, including obtaining any required permits.
The Bottom Line
But if you would like to buy a house in Italy, there really are other options of one euro properties in Italy. You also don’t have to expect news of Italy’s property offerings.
Better still, go on a long drive all over the state, keeping a close eye out for sale signs in the lovely towns you pass. Listings can be found anywhere, hidden beneath those typical Italian green doors.