FAQ

Buying property in Italy should not be a difficult or stressful experience as we will help you every step of the way. It will probably differ from buying a property in your own country and that is why we have tried to set out the journey from searching for a home to actually signing the final contract in 4 steps. This should help you understand how things work in Italy.

1

FINDING YOUR DREAM HOME AND PREPARING FOR A PURCHASE

Our careful selection of properties, and a fully transparent process, ensures that you do not waste time looking at properties that do not fit your requirements. We offer only homes that we have viewed ourselves and been authorised to sell. The properties we have chosen to sell are typically character homes with breathtaking views and which provide a genuine opportunity to create a spectacular home. The majority of properties on our books are old and in need of a total restoration project.

Start by listing your wishes here. We will then suggest a meeting here in Italy or by phone if you are abroad. This will allow us to understand your requirements and expectations.
Based on your search criteria we will compile a list of properties for you to consider. This will provide us with the necessary information to create a tailor made shortlist for viewing once you are in Italy.

We normally suggest max. 3 – 4 properties a day. This will give you time to inspect the property thoroughly and to carefully consider the possibilities each property represents. You will also want some time to enjoy the views! You should expect some travel time between each property, these beautiful properties are usually tucked away from the main roads.

Like everywhere else a mortgage provider will need various documentation as part of the application process. It is very straightforward and as we work with English speaking mortgage / insurance providers as well as one of the largest banks in the area we can make the right introductions for you.

The 2 most important tasks are to obtain a “Codice Fiscale” (personal tax code) and to set up a Bank Account. “Codice Fiscale” is your unique tax code or ID number which is necessary for almost any purpose (Insurance, gas, water & electricity supply, phone subscription etc). This is acquired through your local Comune. You will also need the Codice Fiscale to set up your local bank account.

The geometra can play a significant role in the purchase and renovation of your Italian home. Geometra means “surveyor”; But this translation does not cover the load because the geometra is much more than a surveyor. He carries out a large number of the activities performed in other countries by an architect, estate agent, supervisor and contractor. The geometra is unique for Italy. In other European countries, you will not find this position.  

 

Overview of the tasks of an Italian geometra:

 

  •  Investigate the land register to find out all information about a property. Is the property registered with the land registry? Are the cadastral data still correct? It is often the case that there have been illegal renovations. The geometra will sort this out and will see to it that the seller returns everything to its original state as described in the cadastre.
  •  Preparation of plans and specifications for smaller renovation works
  •  A geometra helps to evaluate the bids of the different contractors.
  •  Request permits from the municipality. A local geometra has the correct access points to the municipality and can ensure that permits are issued more quickly.
  •  A geometra checks the execution of the renovation work.
  •  The seller must demonstrate that the installation of gas, water, and light complies with the standards. The geometra checks this.

 

As a foreigner, it is convenient to have a geometra as a supervisor. He knows the local customs and methods of construction and can accurately assess whether the work is carried out by the drawn up plans and permits. It is important that he has good contacts with the municipal officials.

2

SECURING THE DEAL

Once you have found the property you would like to call HOME you should consider getting a technical evaluation of the quality of the property, negotiate the price, agree a date for the final contract as well as give considerations as to how any produce (vines, nuts or fruit) should be divided between you and the vendor. We work with an experienced Geometra who can give you 100% independent and honest advice on the state of the building and the possibilities it represents. It is also normal to have a geological report drawn up at this stage.

Most of the properties we sell are old and in a poor state of repair. Don’t let it put you off pursuing your dream home! We have lots of examples of how to transform an old building into a beautiful charming home .

Our experienced Geometra will give you a completely independent and honest assessment of the current property and your ideas and assess if your visions can be delivered. This discussion / evaluation / survey is naturally undertaken before you take any decision to buy the property.

Each property listed on our books has a technical sheet giving an approximate price of the cost of the renovation project including building costs, legal fees, technical surveys and estate agent commission. It also includes an estimate for a standard size swimming pool. These costs are only indicative and may vary depending on your project.

A restoration project normally takes circa 10 – 12 months + the time taken to obtain planning permission.
A completely new build / rebuild normally takes circa 12-15 months + the time taken to obtain planning permission.

Once you are sure that the specific property is the right one, you will need to provide us with a written offer. We will then contact the seller to present and discuss your offer.

3

PRELIMINARY CONTRACT (PROMISE OF SALE)

Once you sign the preliminary contract (“contratto preliminare”) and pay a deposit, this becomes a legally binding document that needs to be registered. The compromesso is a short simple document but it sets out the legal obligations for both vendor and purchaser.

Yes, we recommend you do, however if you are unable to attend you can appoint the estate agent or a third party to represent you.

Yes, a deposit of 10% is required at the Contratto Preliminare. This amount is held by the Notary until the final contract is signed. In case of default, the other party will have the possibility to withdraw from the contract withholding the deposit (or claiming double).

You have a 7 day grace period to withdraw from the contract. On the eighth day the contract is legally binding and irrevocable.

4

THE FINAL CONTRACT

The final contract (“Atto”) is drawn up by a Notary who acts on behalf of both the purchaser and the vendor and is responsible for the correct transfer of the property. He is responsible for a long list of tasks including:

  • Ensure that the seller is the legal owner of the property and that he/she has the rights to sell
  • Ensure that the property is clearly specified according to the land registry (“Catasto”)
  • Ensure that the property is free of mortgages and that it complies with all local planning rules and regulations.
  • Register the newly signed contract at the Land Registry
  • Provide both parties with a copy of the Final Deed of Sale.
Yes, you need to be present to sign the deed and to pass on the final cost of the property.
Yes, however an official translator must be in attendance for foreign purchasers who cannot speak Italian. This will cost circa €500 plus IVA.

The final amount of the purchase price should be paid by a Bank Draft. You will also need to bring other cheques in order to pay the Notary, translation provider and estate agent commission.
We will ensure that you receive information / documentation of each of these expenses in advance of the meeting.
Italian law dictates that the payment of the final amount can only be made via a cheque issued by an Italian bank.

Estate Agent commission. In Italy both purchaser and vendor pay commission to the Estate Agent. Our standard fee is 3% of the property price and no VAT is applicable.  This rate depends on the sale price and could change accordingly.

Translation fees. Unless the Notary speaks English, It is essential to have an official translator at the signing of the final contract to ensure you fully understand all the obligations of the contract. We work with a reputable and fully independent agency that provides certified translators. You should expect the fee to be circa €600 excl. VAT.

This is done after the contract is signed and the property has been transferred to your name. When you have agreed the project with the Geometra he will compile a “Computo Metrico” (bill of quantities) which sets out all the details required to deliver your project and will be used to confirm the building costs.

HOMES IN PIEMONTE

VICKI CHRISTENSEN

+39 3484511960

info@homesinpiemonte.com

P. IVA:  01660010057 | REA:  133147

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