In recent years the Italian real estate market has attracted many foreigner investors. Although some people decide to move to Italy permanently, others prefer to travel to the country occasionally. Some people, for instance, travel to Italy to spend a few weeks during the summer and winter holidays and they can rent their properties while they are not in Italy, thereby generating a good source of income. Drawing from this, this article will provide you with a few tips and more detailed information about the options which are available to you after you have purchased your property in Italy.
Setting up utilities
Firstly, after you buy your property you need to set up utilities (gas, water and electricity). If these are active, you will only need to contact the utility provider and request a bill transfer. In fact, if you fail to transfer the utilities, the individual whose name is on the original bills will be liable for future payments and this can lead to legal issues if he or she moves out of the property or if your contract requires you to transfer the bills. On the other hand, if utilities are deactivated you will need to contact the suppliers to install water , electricity, gas, internet, telephone and television. The suppliers and the cost for their services may vary depending on where the property is located. You can also ask a third party to request that utilities be installed; this could be a real estate agent, for example, or someone you trust who can act on your behalf via a power of attorney. You can pay for transferring bills at a local post office, however, nowadays you can also make online payments and receive bills via email even if you do not have a bank account in Italy.
Renting your property
If you are not planning on relocating to Italy you might want to travel to Italy occasionally and rent your property while you are not there. There are several types of rental contracts:
- Long-term contracts: there are two types of long-term contracts. The first one is 4 years long and it is renewable for an additional 4 years whereas the second one is 3 years long and it can be renewed for an additional 2 years.
- Short-term contracts: these can be a minimum of one month to a maximum of 18 months long. These types of contracts are normally ideal for tourists and are used by Airbnb and other short-term rental companies.
The rental agreement must be a written contract and it must be registered with the Italian Revenue Office (Agenzia delle Entrate). The taxes you will need to pay on the property are calculated on the income that is generated through rent. The amount is also calculated depending on where the property is located. However, we suggest you ask an accountant for advice and detailed information about taxes.
In order to sign a rental contract you must hold an Italian Tax Code (Codice Fiscale). The tenant can decide to move out prior to the agreed date provided that he or she gives notice to the landlord. The amount of notice varies depending on the specific type of contract. A landlord may legally terminate a rental agreement if the tenant violates its terms or the law. Finally, a landlord may keep all or part of a tenant security deposit if the tenant damages the property or breaks the lease. As a general rule, if a tenant signs a contract for a couple of years, he or she will be required to pay a deposit which is equal to 3 months’ rent.
You might want to consider relying on external help when you rent out your property in Italy. If you are unable to travel to Italy multiple times, for instance, it might be wise to employ the services of a property management company who can advertise your property, collect payment, clean the property and carry out maintenance work, if needed.
Moving into your Italian property
It is worth pointing out that owning a property in Italy does not mean that you can reside in Italy without any limits. Citizens from the USA, Canada and the UK can enter Italy on a 90-days tourist visa, which allows you to stay in Italy for 3 months only. On the other hand, if you are planning on spending more than 90 days in Italy you need to apply for a different type of visa such as an elective residence visa, a working visa or a student visa depending on your needs.
If you would like further information about purchasing and renting a property in Italy please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free consultation. We will be happy to assist you.