You can buy a house in Italy right now for 1 euro. Well, it’s true. Italy is giving away houses. 
The concept of “1 euro houses” has a certain charm. With a single coin you can become the owner of an apartment in an ancient village or own a house in a village perhaps with a view of the sea but there is a catch.

photo of brown and gray buildings
to Buy a house in Italy for 1 euro
Photo by Kai Pilger on Pexels.com

Why you can buy a House for 1 euro?

The main reason is that Italy is rapidly shrinking native population. For instance italians used to have more kids, but now they have the lowest birthrate in Europe. That means people are inheriting “extra” houses from Auntie Nina and Pina that once would have gone to siblings or cousins. Or the elderly are finding themselves with no one to leave their houses to. Their kids don’t want them — they’ve already moved to bigger cities with better opportunities.

Owning houses means paying taxes, and so liquidating surplus homes can be a huge financial load off. People often donated to city hall these “extra” houses, and many municipalities have had to get creative about what to do with them.

Because of mayors fighting against populations in abandonment or decline with an innovative way of killing two birds with one stone — they sell the houses for super cheap to anyone willing to commit restoring them, with the long term goal of bringing life and tourism back to these areas.

Maenza, Italy, is a little over an hour from Rome by car. Laz@Photo/Getty Images

“Families and youths often leave town to move to larger homes in nearby cities and villas in the countryside, but there’s always some newcomer who takes their place so it’s balanced out.”

Claudio Sperduti, the mayor of Maenza, told CNN

When this started?

The trend started a decade ago when the mayor of Salemi, a small town in Sicily, came up with the idea of selling homes that had lain in ruin since a 1968 earthquake to anyone who would agree to renovate them for just one euro. The Salemi project has been ultimately a failure from the buildings not being earthquake-safe to the homes being repossessed because of mafia infiltration. Also other communities are inspired to create similar initiatives that have been quite successful — nearby Gangi received 1000 applications and had sold 100 houses by 2016.

Of course the international media — including CNN and Travel + Leisure — has been all over this news. After all, owning a vacation property in Italy would be a dream come true for a lot of us!

How to buy a house in Italy?

Before dreaming of real estate investments, however, you need to know the rules of the game.

Firstly collect information on the municipalities that have launched tenders for one-euro houses. Secondly read the municipal regulations carefully.

In conclusion you’ll need to fill out an application to buy a house in Italy, that can be found on the individual municipality website.

Is true that you can buy a house for 1 euro?

If it is true that you buy a house for one euro, it is also true that, in most cases, the house must be renovated or it is necessary to become a resident of the municipality concerned. Therefore, the euro is not enough, you need to have an initial capital of thousands of euros to cover the costs of a restructuring. Or You’d better be insanely good at bricklaying, painting and roof installation.

If you are planning to hire someone to do the job that you need to see yourself managing a general contractor in another language.

And have many months to do only that.

Let’s calculate all the costs:

  • Cost of the house: €1
  • Taxes: €350
  • Deposit: €5.000
  • Renovation: €17.000 – 50.000
  • Flights and accommodation: €1.000 – 10.000

Total: €23351 – 65351

Can a foreigner buy a house in Italy?


Who can buy a property in Italy? There are no restrictions for foreigners who want to buy properties in Italy. However, the Italian authorities have the power of making some verifications of criminal records and other aspects.

How long can you live in Italy without citizenship?

Americans can stay or travel within Italy for less than three (3) months and do not neet citizenship.

Europeans you

Where are the houses for one euro?

In this paragraph I am going to discuss where you can buy houses for one euro. Firstly read in this article in Italian where you can buy a house and the rules of each municipality.

Secondly find here a full list of the towns currently participating in this initiative. And now do some preliminary browsing by googling for some of the areas taking part, like Patrica near Rome, Lecce di Marsi in the Abruzzo region, and the Tuscan towns of Fabbriche di Vergemoli and Montieri.

In conclusion check the latest news on Case a 1 Euro website. You will find that the latest Italian town called Ollolai (120 requests by late 2017 from all over the world), gives away houses on the amazing island of Sardinia. And the town of Sambuca in Sicily, received crazy a lot of requests in response of the one euro deal.

Do you need to buy a house for one euro?

You do need to buy a house for one euro. But if you REALLY want to own a home in Italy and can see yourself making that lifestyle choice, you can see what’s available on immobiliare.it.

Or better yet, spend some time road tripping around the country, keeping your eyes open for places for sale in the cute spots you visit. Listings are everywhere, peeking out from behind those iconic Italian green shutters.

Therefore you can travel to Italy every year and stay for a few months as a tourist. Just rent an apartment long-term and ditch all of the headaches associated with owning the home.

P.S. If you think we can help you turn this Italian dream into a reality, pronto…Know that we’re just an educational travel company, not real estate agents. As a result we’re just doing our part to spread the word (because it’s so awesome!). We’ll leave that in the hands of the pros to help you purchase an Italian home on this crazy discount.

Leave a comment! Have you ever thought about buying foreign real-estate? If you could buy anywhere, where would you buy?

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