The procedure of purchasing a property in Italy

Any foreign citizen has the opportunity to purchase a property in Italy. Both individual and legal persons can make a purchase. Making a purchase as an individual you will simplify your life saving on the annual tax and value added tax (VAT) in case of resale. Legal person always has to pay VAT while individual shouldn’t pay VAT in the case of resale in 5 years.

What steps does the procedure of purchasing a property in Italy consist of? First of all you have to choose the property. Our estate agency can offer a wide range of accommodation for any taste. Before purchasing a property in Italy as individual, it is necessary to obtain Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (Codice Fiscale) and open a bank account, because you will have to do all payments using your Italian account. you will need to sign an offer of purchase (PROPOSTA), indicating legal details of the parties, a detailed description of the property, the dates of sale and purchase contract, as well as terms of payment. 

Together with offer of purchase you will have to make first payment in amount of 5-10% of the property price. If the Client doesn’t fulfil all the requirements of an offer of purchase, first payment will not be returned. In case if Executor doesn’t fulfil the requirements, he/ she will return the first payment in double amount. At the time when both parties have signed an offer of purchase, all agencies involved in transaction have the right to get a commission. But at request of the parties real estate agents can accompany this transaction before signing the notarial deed. It is usual practice due to possible difficulties for a foreign Client, although for Italian citizen further accompaniment of transaction is not compulsory. Next step is completing a draft contract (COMPROMESSO). This is not a purchasing yet, so it will be necessary to make another payment in amount of 25-30% of the property price. The contract is in the form of private contract which does not require certification by a notary. If the property is free and there is not any other reasons, you can skip this step and go directly to the registration of the title deed with consent of both sides.

In return, the sale and purchase contract is signed in front of a notary and witnesses. For Russian-speaking there should be a translator accredited in the court. The original contract remains at the notary for further registration in Cadastre. At the time of signing the notarial deed parties should make full payment to the seller and payment of all taxes on buying and selling , as well as payment to the notary and translator. Role of the translator is very important, because the act signed by the Client without knowledge of Italian language can not be recognised legal.

There are several types of fees in the country:

Register (Imposta di Registro) should be payed to the government at the time of purchasing proportional to property price.

Inventory and Mortgage (Imposta Catastale e Ipotecaria) should be payed to the government at the time of property’s inventory and registration in public registers. For foreign Buyers this fee is 10% of cadastral value or 10%-VAT (IVA)in case of buying a new property (less than 4 years old) from a real estate developer.

Cadastral value is often much cheaper market value. You will get official documents in 1-3 months from a notary after signing a contract in front of a notary and witnesses. On a day of signing a contract you can ask a notary for a certificate, stating your position as an owner of a property in Italy. You can use this certificate to obtain a visa in the embassy.

Useful tips for Buyers

Some clients, considering  themselves as the sliest, ask the agency to show them a property and then try to negotiate directly with the owner. We strongly warn you not to do this , because according to Italian law an agency that showed you a property has already have a commission. As soon as you register your transaction this information will be shown in Cadastre, thus you will have to pay the commission to an agency or you will take a risk to have your property under arrest. What you really saved? Apart from the commission you will have to compensate the additional costs of the plaintiff’s attorney.

Another useful tip. If you have watched the property with one agency, but couldn’t agree on commission and went to another agency in search of less commission, you will take a risk to pay double commission, because the agency that brought you first to the property has a legal right for compensation. Therefore, it is suggested you don’t start your stay in a foreign country with a negative experience.

Each work must be paid, in Italy it is well understood so it would be desirable to Russian clients do not spare blushes for their “tricks”.

Our agency is trying to help you feel at home, in the best sense of the word. We are ready to help to solve all your problems. We treat our customers as good friends, and of course we hope for mutuality!


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