Buying Property in Italy

Italy, famous for its rich cultural heritage, scenic landscapes, and architectural marvels, offers a compelling real estate market for expats. This guide provides a thorough understanding of the nuances of buying property in Italy, including homeowner regulations, market trends, and financial considerations.

Homeownership in Italy

With approximately 75% of Italians owning their homes, Italy has one of the highest rates of homeownership in Europe. This trend is consistent across various demographics, significantly among older adults aged 55 to 64. Additionally, many Italians own secondary properties, contributing to a robust culture of property investment.

Should You Buy or Rent Property in Italy?

For new expatriates, renting initially might be a prudent choice, allowing you to explore and understand local regions and the Italian property market. Rental costs vary widely, from affordable prices in southern regions like Molise to higher rates in Lombardy and Aosta Valley.

Can Expats Buy Real Estate in Italy?

Fortunately, Italy offers a fairly liberal real estate acquisition environment for expats. EU citizens enjoy unrestricted access to the property market. Non-EU nationals can purchase properties provided there is a reciprocal agreement between Italy and their home country. All potential buyers should secure an Italian tax number and bank account.

Understanding the Italian Property Market and Prices

The Italian real estate market has seen fluctuating trends, with stagnant periods followed by growth spurts due to governmental reforms such as the ‘superbonus’ scheme for renovations. Websites like Idealista and offer updated insights into current property prices across Italy.

Regional Property Case Studies


The capital city of Italy, Rome offers a variety of property types across its districts, from luxurious areas like Via Appia Antica to more affordable but vibrant neighborhoods like Trastevere.


As Italy’s fashion and business capital, Milan commands the highest property prices, particularly in downtown areas and trendy neighborhoods like Corso Como and Brera.

Costs of Buying Real Estate in Italy

Prospective buyers should prepare for additional costs which can range from 10% to 15% of the property price, encompassing notary fees, registration taxes, and potential VAT on new constructions.

Financing Your Italian Property Purchase

Both fixed-rate and variable-rate mortgages are available in Italy. Expats should ensure they meet the financial criteria required by Italian banks, which typically offer financing up to 60%-80% of the property’s value.

The Process of Buying Real Estate in Italy

The property acquisition process in Italy involves several key steps including finding a property, making an offer, ensuring the legalities with your solicitor, and finalizing your purchase with a notary present. Detailed understanding of each step is crucial for a smooth transaction.

Moving Into and Managing Your Italian Property

Once the purchase is complete, consider acquiring appropriate property and contents insurance. Additionally, investigate the local utility providers for setting up essential services such as electricity, water, and internet.

Building a Property

For those interested in constructing their own home, navigating through the Italian zoning laws and obtaining the necessary building permits is key.

Tips and Resources for Buying a Home in Italy

To aid your home buying journey in Italy, leverage resources like for property listings or MutuiSupermarket for comparing mortgage options. Engaging with a knowledgeable real estate agent and legal advisor who understand the needs of expatriates is also advisable.

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