Italy Property Purchase

Key Questions To Ask Yourself Before You Buy


Often people consider doing their first Italy property purchase in an area they know well, usually through their vacation visits and being familiar with the area is certainly a good idea when buying your Italian property. It is important also to bear in mind that circumstances can and do change in life. So it will be wise for you to consider whether any potential property meets not only your needs now, but also your needs in the future.


Therefore, before taking the plunge, indeed, before starting your search in earnest, you should ask yourself some fundamental questions which we have summarised for you in this section:


You may find that some of these questions cannot be answered either in full or with any real degree of accuracy but hopefully they will help you in making a sound investment purchase. Always aim to find a property that you feel confident will grow in value, at least in line with the market rate, and one that will be easy to let.


Italy Property Purchase: What is your main investment
reason for buying the property ?

Putting aside other considerations, your main investment reason for buying will be one or a combination of the following:

  • Investing for capital growth : There are several routes you can take when your aim is to invest for capital growth. One is to consider properties in previously “undiscovered” areas. However, investing in overlooked areas carries its own risks as it takes time before the area get sought after so how early you get in will be directly proportional to how long-term you view your initial investment.

    The other way of combining capital growth with a holiday or a permanent home is to renovate. The key for success in adding value through conversion/renovation is to ensure manage costs carefully as well as preserve and enhance rather than destroy the present features of the property.

  • Investing for rental income : If this is your aim, then you need to allow your purchase decision to be largely dictated by the demands of the rental market. This means that you need to carry out a lot of research to figure out what is most in demand. Don’t try and second-guess the market, instead be guided by it. Just because you fall in love with a property does not mean that it is ideal for renting. And, if you are relying on rental income to offset the cost of servicing a mortgage, then buying the right property is even more important.

    The key ingredients in the formula for achieving a maximum rental return are:
    • Right location - Choose a property in a popular destination for tourists either on the edge of a charming village or preferably a property that stands alone. Privacy and peaceful seclusion are desirable qualities for rental properties.
    • High level of convenience - Within one hour of good beaches; Within one hour of an international airport – Pisa, Genoa etc; Located near sites of interest; Availability of basic supplies nearby – bread, milk, etc.
    • Good standard of on-site facilities - Large enough property to be capable of accommodating two, if not three, families as these are most popular. It's always worth costing a pool to work out how much extra return it will provide. They are in great demand by holiday renters. Plenty of own grounds with adequate barbecue, sunbathing areas. Adequate bathrooms and good-sized and well equipped kitchen. Easy car access. Safe for children (no steep drops in garden, etc). Make sure it’s centrally heated to allow winter use.

    Follow the Formula for Rental Success :


    Right Location + High Level of Convenience + Good Standard of On-site Facilities = Maximum Rental Return with Highest Rate of Occupancy

  • Regard the property ONLY as an investment : If this is your aim then you really have only two considerations – finding out where is the property inflation the fastest; and making sure that there is rental demand for the kind of property you are considering.

What is vital though in all three cases is to always look for high-quality properties, which meet the following criteria:

  • In picturesque locations
  • In coastal areas – or within maximum of one to two hours’ drive of the coast
  • In areas where rejuvenation is well-established
  • Near to cities and towns of special tourist interest.

Italy Property Purchase: What can I afford to pay?

It seems like common sense that you should calculate what you can afford to pay before you start to look for a property. But many people manage to leave Italy having signed to buy a property that is a great deal more expensive than they originally believed they could afford. This, quite obviously, can lead to serious problems in the future, especially if you find out that you cannot service a loan and therefore have to sell.

You should do everything possible to ensure that you, rather than changing circumstances, control when the property is sold. This means operating at all times within a realistic budget.


Italy Property Purchase: How can I make sure I am not overpaying ?

With only a little research, it is not difficult to avoid paying too much for your property. You need to check with estate agents and compare prices of similar properties in the same area. A rule of thumb is to remember that most Italian estate agents will put a property on the market at around 15% above the price they expect it will sell for.

It is also a good idea to employ a professional to assess the quality of the place and check whether there are any faults needing urgent (and expensive) attention when assessing the valuation of the property.

All estate agents will be able to give details of a Geometra (the equivalent of a surveyor) who will provide you with a detailed assessment of the state of the property.


Italy Property Purchase: What type of property do I
want ?

The type of property you want will strongly influence where you look. Or, in the same way, if you are set on a particular area and a particular kind of location within that area, that too will have an influence on the types of properties available for purchase.


Italy Property Purchase: How long will it take me to
get there ?

Once buy within fairly easy driving range of an airport. Ideally, this should be within one to one and a half hours distance.


Italy Property Purchase: If I have to, how easy will
it be to sell ?

The key points to determine here is whether the property is the kind of property that generally sells well in its location. As well as whether your Italy property is typical of its area, and that estate agents locally are selling lots of this kind of property and in the same price bracket.

Also, check with estate agents where the largest numbers of buyers in their area are from and what their main reasons for buying properties are. The same is true of the properties in the immediate vicinity of your dream home.

Always check how long the property has been on the market. If this is for an extended time, it does not necessarily have to sound alarm bells, but it is worth taking into consideration. Bear in mind, however, that some rural properties in Italy may take many months to sell.




Questions to Ask before You Buy Your Italy Property


Thank you for visiting our guide… we look forward to welcoming you to Liguria and hope you will love it as much as we do !

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