If you’ve been debating buying a property in Italy, there has never been a better time to find a bargain. The pandemic has resulted in financial conditions that favour buyers, but they won’t last forever…
So, what are the advantages of buying an Italian home now?
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Property prices are starting to fall
The Italian property market is unique in that over the last decade, property prices have generally been falling. This is largely due to the vast number of large, older properties in desperate need of renovation, making them difficult to sell.
Nonetheless, Covid-induced lifestyle changes have resulted in more people seeking larger properties with gardens. And, with more time on their hands, many buyers have also been keen to take on a renovation project.
As such, house prices rose by 1.9% in 2020 compared to 2019, with the fastest growth in the south. In southern Italy and its islands, property prices rose by 3% in the final quarter of 2020, compared to the same time in 2019.
But as life starts to return to somewhat ‘normal’, this growth appears to have stabilised, and prices are once again falling; only Sicily and Sardinia are still recording a price increase.
New builds, city centre apartments and investment properties also remain buoyant, meaning you could take advantage of the lower post-pandemic prices and likely enjoy a steady increase in value over the coming years.
Mortgage rates are at historic lows
There’s even more good news for prospective buyers in Italy: according to the Italian Banking Association (ABI), the interest rates on mortgages for first-time buyers are “at historic lows”.
As of August 2021, the interest rate in Italy was 1.62% – lower than the eurozone average.
Additionally, the average mortgage repayment in Italy is around half of what it was 10 years ago.
While interest rates are currently very low, the current economic situation is still uncertain. The inflation rate in Italy, and the whole eurozone for that matter, has accelerated in the last year due to the pandemic. Subsequently, the European Central Bank faces a tricky dilemma of whether to raise interest rates to help reduce this rising inflation.
So, if you’re thinking of purchasing a home in Italy and taking advantage of these record low interest rates, our advice is not to wait too long.
Make sure you get the best possible mortgage for your property by talking to your recommended Italian mortgage specialist.
Help to buy for those under 36
Under 36 and looking to buy a home in Italy? The Italian government has launched a ‘help to buy’ scheme for younger buyers looking to get on the property ladder.
This exciting scheme is not restricted to Italian citizens either, meaning expats or holiday home buyers can also take advantage.
You’ll enjoy VAT cuts and exemptions on registration, mortgage and land registry tax, allowing you to save up to €9,000.
The only requirement is that you must be purchasing your first property in Italy, and applicants must also have an ‘ISEE’ (household income) of €40,000.