Italy has enjoyed a passionate following from overseas visitors for centuries, from those visiting to non-residents thinking of retiring in the country. Italy is appreciated for the huge variety of landscapes that it offers: wonderful beaches, high mountains, ancient cities, not to talk about the culture of food and wine known throughout. That’s why a lot of people are interested in buying a home in this beautiful country.

Over the past thirty years, the Italian property market has been through two bullish markets and two contraction phrases relative to the average prices that you can expect to pay for property throughout the country. The house price expansion and contractions were reflective of the global housing market whereby first world countries were in line with each other’s property fluctuations. However, over the past decade, the prices of properties in Italy are lower than the historical average, there has been limited price increases since the 2008 financial crash and only in the most prestigious regions have we seen consistent price growth from 2008.

The most desirable locations and highest prices of property in Italy are to be found in Tuscany, Apulia (Puglia), Lombardy and Sardinia. We shall take a look at each of regions in Italy and find out what attracts people to come and live in each region and what property prices are within each region.

Tuscany

For a region that depicts typical Italy, then look no further than Tuscany with its rolling hills covered in olive groves, vineyards or cypress trees. There are three main cities that attract tourists and visitors all year round, Florence, Pisa and Siena. Each of these cities is draped in history and has plenty of architectural buildings to visit.

We find that our clients wishing to move to Tuscany are interested in purchasing a rural farmhouse away from the busy cities, but still close enough to be able to use the international airport at Florence to permit relatively quick travel. Generally, prices for a traditional farmhouse with an acre of land will start from €500,000 to €700,000 ($590,000 or £440,000) and can easily go up to €5,000,000 ($5,900,000 or £4,400,000) when you look at properties in the most sort after region (Forte deiMarmi).

For those that prefer to live within one of the main cities within the region, you will find that apartment prices can start from €220,000 ($260,000 or £192,000) in Florence, slightly lower in the other towns and cities.

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Apulia (Puglia)

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the location of some of the regions of Italy, Apulia is located at ‘heel’ of the famous foot at the end of the famous Italian coast line and is surrounded by the Adriatic Sea. The region is famous for its centuries–old farmhouses and whitewashed hill towns, as well as hundreds of miles of Mediterranean coastline.

Despite being one of the most popular regions for those wishing to purchase Italian real estate, Apulia are not as expensive as Tuscany and many foreigners arrive in this region seeking a quieter life for retirement. Most farm houses and smaller seaside cottages from €250,000 ($295,000 or £220,000), while famous farmhouse mansions called ‘Masserie’ will start from €440,000 ($520,000 or £385,000) and easily exceed a million euros when modernized and refurbished.

Lombardy

Lombardy is located in the North of Italy, it is bordered by Switzerland and offers residence in beautiful mountains and lakes and the historic city of Milan as its main city. For those that are interested in the worlds of fashion, finance high-end shops and Michelin starred restaurants then you may consider Lombardy as a suitable region to live in.

If there was a place where Italian soccer players, politicians, actors and singers are to be found it is the Lombardy region with its lakes and mountains. Consequently, you’ll find that the cost of purchasing a property here will be higher than the other parts of Italy. Apartments will normally start from €400,000 ($470,000 or £350,000), while those wishing to purchase a large villa can expect to pay upwards of €2,000,000 ($2,360,000 or £1,750,000).

Sardinia

Lombardy is located in the North of Italy, it is bordered by Switzerland and offers residence in beautiful mountains and lakes and the historic city of Milan as its main city. For those that are interested in the worlds of fashion, finance high-end shops and Michelin starred restaurants then you may consider Lombardy as a suitable region to live in.

If there was a place where Italian soccer players, politicians, actors and singers are to be found it is the Lombardy region with its lakes and mountains. Consequently, you’ll find that the cost of purchasing a property here will be higher than the other parts of Italy. Apartments will normally start from €400,000 ($470,000 or £350,000), while those wishing to purchase a large villa can expect to pay upwards of €2,000,000 ($2,360,000 or £1,750,000).

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Other Regions in Italy

If you find that your budget doesn’t accommodate any of the regions listed, you might think about purchasing in other locations that aren’t as expensive. For example, the regions of Le Marche, Lazio, Calabria could be very worthwhile solutions.

Le Marche

Le Marche is an Eastern region located in central Italy, it is situated between the Adriatic Sea and the Apennine Mountains. Prices start from €80,000 ($95,000 or £70,000)and that will find you a stone building located in the rolling hills. For those that have budgets between €100,000 ($120,000 or £87,000) and €250,000 ($300,000 or £220,000), you should be able to experience a small finished cottage, or perhaps a seaside apartment that will be finished and renovated at the higher end of the scale.

Lazio

Lazio is where you will find Rome, the capital city and one of the most historic locations on the planet entrenched with history. Although you will find that the properties in Rome will be the most expensive in the region, there are opportunities to purchase real estate at far more reasonable levels. Local village houses in a desirable town may start from €90,000 ($105,000 or £80,000), while farmhouses, where there is a need for renovation, can start from €120,000 ($140,000 or £105,000) and habitable farmhouses at around €180,000 ($212,000 or £160,000).

Calabria

Calabria is located at the bottom of Italy and occupies the ‘toe’ section of the country’s rugged landscape. This is the sunniest region of Italy, with mountains, popular beaches and old-fashioned villages offering inexpensive seaside apartments and rural properties. You can get a new one-bedroom apartment with a sea view with about €58,000 ($70,000 or £50,000), and a two-bed with €80,000 or old village houses needing some modernization can be had for as little as €35,000.

Average House Prices Changes in Italy since 1993

A further point to consider when we talk about Italian real estate market is the price evolution of the last 25 years. Starting from 1993, we can distinguish four main phases:

  • Downturn: 1993-1999 (-19.2%). The average prices stand at 1.588€ per square meter, against 2.149€ per square meter in 1992.
  • Expansion phase: 2000-2007 (+32.6 %). In this period there is an increase of buying and selling of homes.
  • Downturn: 2008-2015 (-24.1%). The price decrease is due to the collapse of the real estate market in the USA and to the failure of the saving banks that undermined the European markets.
  • Expansion phase: from 2017. Prices are decreasing but at a lower speed: if in 2016 the annual change was -0.5% by comparison with 2015, in 2017 a slight recovery is expected (between +0.3% and +0.8% by comparison with 2016).

House prices have been relatively subdued and can even be considered to be stagnating across the majority of the country since 2008, with exceptions of higher price increases appearing in the most popular locations, such as Tuscany, Lombardy and Apulia.

If you’re considering purchasing a property in Italy, you will be buying at the bottom of the market for the next decade and will likely experience significant capital gains over a longer period of time than a lot of other countries.

Contact us today if you would like assistance and advice with purchasing your own piece of Italian real estate

                    

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