Italy’s one euro houses: who can buy one and how does it work?

With property costs within the UK out of attain for a lot of first time patrons, and householders dreaming of a second pad within the solar, the thought of snapping up an Italian casa for 86p is intoxicating.

A number of small Italian cities have hit the headlines for promoting off vacant homes for €1 a pop prior to now couple of years.

However how does the scheme work, and who’s eligible to snap up one in every of these cut price villas within the solar?

Why is Italy promoting homes for €1?

As younger Italians more and more migrate to town and select cosmopolitan jobs over rural and neighborhood vocations, a lot of Italy’s prettiest distant villages have gotten deserted, with tiny, ageing populations which are starting to die off.

Some aged Italians have discovered themselves with nobody to depart their home to, bequeathing it as an alternative to the native authorities, who should determine what to do with it, whereas some youthful residents have inherited properties in areas they don’t have any intention of transferring to.

Having a second house in Italy means paying taxes, so promoting these unused homes off cheaply may be extra profitable than retaining them.

That’s why round 25 Italian municipalities are making potential householders a proposal they’ll’t refuse – a home for the symbolic value of €1.

The thought is, having these houses improved and occupied within the subsequent few years is price extra to the cities than promoting them off at full value.

“We don’t want new constructions and new overbuilding. The technique to enhance the housing setting and reclaim our cultural identification is to revive the small deserted centres or to redevelop buildings in a state of abandonment, with a narrative that’s our historical past,” reads an announcement by the staff at

Native authorities in areas corresponding to Emilia-Romagna, Abruzzo and Campania additionally hope an inflow of recent householders will stimulate the financial system, as they purchase native produce, make use of native development staff, pour cash into native venues and points of interest, and even increase tourism by creating boutique motels or B&Bs.

What’s the catch?

You’re not shopping for a shiny new villa – homes chosen for the scheme are sometimes dilapidated and require main structural enhancements. You’re investing in a fixer-upper, not buying a ready-to-move-in house.

Nonetheless, the price of renovations continues to be comparatively low in comparison with different nations – within the area of €20,000-50,000 relying on the scale of the property.

Whereas most homes are humble village houses or cottages, some stately houses are additionally on sale, with a a lot larger price ticket hooked up. The sellers of this former monastery outdoors Bologna estimate important renovations may value €1.5m.

Authorized charges for purchasing a home overseas can add as much as €3,000 on high of this, and a few municipalities additionally ask for a “assure payment” (from €1,000 to €10,000 relying in town and the price of the renovation undertaking) to show you’re dedicated to enhancing the property.

On the upside, Italy does present a ‘superbonus’ tax exemption for patrons that covers 110 per cent of qualifying constructing expenditures.

You gained’t have the ability to make imprecise guarantees about refurbishing your new pad someday sooner or later, both – new homeowners are required to submit particulars of a renovation undertaking inside two to 12 months of buy (relying on the situation), begin work inside one 12 months, and full it inside the subsequent three.

It’s additionally price noting that not each property finally ends up being offered for only a euro. Well-liked homes have turn out to be the topic of a bidding battle, with a number of going for €5,000 and even €20,000.

So it is a scheme for individuals who have some financial savings saved up past the preliminary euro.

Who should buy a one euro home?

“Is it true or is it a joke?” reads a bit of the web site, which lists €1 properties at present on the market in Mussomeli, 60 miles south of Palermo, Sicily.

It isn’t a joke. Guidelines differ from city to city, however within the case of Mussomeli, patrons should have the monetary and sensible wherewithal to:

  • Help all bills for the drafting of the deeds of sale (notary, registration, switch)
  • Put together a undertaking for the renovation of the property inside one 12 months of buy, buying any permissions wanted
  • Begin work inside two months of the date of challenge of the constructing allow
  • Conclude work inside three years
  • Put down a “assure coverage” deposit of £5,000 (£4,314), which they’ll lose within the occasion that the work doesn’t go forward inside three years

In Mussomeli, you are able to do no matter you want with the inside of the property, however should maintain the facade trying because it did initially.

Small print goes on to say that you’re entitled to renovate the property your self, or along with your alternative of staff.

That is the route that French purchaser Morgane Guihot and her husband took, telling CNN in 2019: “As we’re each artisans and renovators we did many of the work ourselves, which was minimal, and it was nice seeing our two-room home come to life once more.”

Most cities who’ve arrange a €1 home scheme have related monetary necessities – you’ll should examine the particular necessities of the city you wish to purchase in. Some require you to stay in the home after renovations, whereas others can help you purchase it with a view to utilizing it as a vacation house or as a small enterprise corresponding to a B&B.

Patrons who don’t have Italian residency or don’t communicate Italian might run into extra hurdles in relation to organising work and having the ability to make use of their property.

Has Brexit affected Brits having the ability to purchase the homes?

Individuals residing outdoors of the EU can nonetheless purchase properties in Italy, however solely as “non residents”. This implies you pay larger taxes than locals, and may spend as much as 180 days per 12 months at your Italian home, however no more than 90 out of each 180 days.

To go to extra usually, you would need to apply for Italian residency, which incorporates proving you’ve got adequate funds to help your self with out employment in Italy.

I’m nonetheless . How do I get began?

You’ll discover €1 homes on the market on web sites corresponding to, and in addition to on particular person native authorities web sites such because the Comune of Sambuca’s or Citta de Troina’s in Sicily.

Auctions2Italy additionally lists some €2 properties within the nation, and also you’ll discover case research and ‘How we did it’ guides on

American purchaser Rubia Daniels, who bought and renovated a €1 house in Sicily, informed Journey + Leisure earlier this 12 months that going and viewing potential homes in particular person is a should; as is inspecting the foundations and state of the partitions.

“Undoubtedly don’t attempt to do it on-line — it’s good to be there to see it and expertise the method to be sure to’re making a aware resolution,” mentioned Daniels. “I wouldn’t do something via the web.”

“You don’t wish to get something the place the partitions are buckled as a result of that signifies a basis challenge,” she advises.

Areas working €1 home schemes


The slice of northern Italy round Bologna has homes on the market in cities corresponding to verdant, ancient-ruin-speckled Modigliana (the place you should buy the aforementioned dilapidated monastery).


The area hugging the coast to the east of Rome. Cities raffling off their vacant houses embrace Casoli, Santo Stefano di Sessanio and Pratola Peligna.


The dramatic, volcanic slice of shoreline round Naples, near Pompeii and the Amalfi Coast has some €1 properties on the market in locations like near-abandoned Pietramelara, which not too long ago has been house to simply 15 households.


Sicily is a hotbed of €1 home schemes. In addition to sleepy Mussomeli, the cities of Calatafimi Segesta, Augusta, Sambuca and Caltagirone are all promoting off undesirable or unclaimed homes.


This northern area close to Switzerland is providing houses in cities like Borgomezzavalle and Albugnano, near famend wine producing areas and the outdoorsy, wooded Antrona Valley.

Le Marche

The medieval city of Cantiano – a 40-minute drive from the seaside – has €1 houses on the market close to white-pebble Adriatic seashores and truffle-hunting spots.


Triora and Pignone are two of the areas on this area, well-known for the colorful fishing villages of Cinque Terre in addition to pesto and foccacia.


With 195,024 inhabitants, Puglia’s provincial capital of Tarento is likely one of the first bigger-scale cities to start out up a 1 Euro Case scheme – placing patrons in contact with its maritime historical past and nice seafood.


The cities of Romana and Nulvi sit within the island’s Sassari province outdoors of Alghero, and have each joined the scheme to unload €1 houses.


Montieri, Grosseto, Lucca and Vergemoli are among the taking part cities in Italy’s hallowed wine and villa haven.

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