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Process for Buying a Property in Italy

Having chosen a property in Italy, the actual purchase usually takes the following pattern:


The purchase price has been established and agreed between the Purchaser and the Vendor the Seller. Italy Chiltons International Estate Agents will arrange to have the COMPROMESSO drawn up.

The compromesso is a legally binding, preliminary contract between the signatories that details such things as:

a) - The sale price

b) - The amount to be paid as the deposit (CAPARRA)

c) - The completion date of the sale

d) - Land boundaries plans and details of the property

e) - Any other clauses that might be relevant such as gas, electricity, water rights, rights of passage, etc.



Once the agreed deposit has been paid (the deposit amount can vary between 15% and 50% of the sale price depending on the property and the Vendors wishes) and the compromesso has been signed, both parties are bound to complete. Should the Purchaser back out of the contract, he or she will lose his or her deposit. If the Vendor fails to fulfil his or her obligations as specified in the compromesso, he or she has to repay DOUBLE the deposit amount to the purchaser.



Once the compromesso has been signed, Italy Chiltons International Estate Agents will instruct a geometra to undertake the conveyancing (la practica). He will visit the Commune (local council) registry offices and the regional land registry offices (il catasto) to obtain the necessary documents required prior to the sale. When he is satisfied that all the documents are in order, he will present them to the Public Notary (il Notaio).



If the Purchaser does not have one he or she must obtain an Italian tax code (codice fiscale).
Italy Chiltons International Estate Agents will be able to obtain this document for you, however you will probable need to be in Italy for this to be obtained.



Unless the Purchaser speaks sufficient Italian to satisfy the Notary that he or she understands the contents of the transfer document (il rogito or the atto notarile), it is necessary to have present an officially accredited translator of which we can arrange. Alternatively, most Purchasers give a special power of attorney (procura speciale all'acquisto) to their Agent or Agency. This document can either be prepared and signed before the Notary while the Purchaser is still in Italy, or alternatively it can be done at the Italian Consulate in the Purchaser's country of residence. Italy Chiltons International as Agents can prepare this document including the specific information so that the Purchaser can simply get it signed and notarised at the nearest Consulate.



All the required documents are presented to the Notary who carefully checks the details. Only when the Notary is satisfied that they are all in order will he prepare the (il rogito) the completion contract.



It is necessary for the Vendor and the Purchaser (or their nominated representatives) to be present at the signing of the atto notarile. The Notary is bound by law to read aloud the contract to the interested parties. Prior to the actual signing, the balance of the purchase price is handed over to the Vendor. The rogito is signed by the Vendor and by the Purchaser and is then countersigned by the Notary. At this stage certain fees, commissions and taxes are to be paid.



The Purchaser is liable to pay:

a) - Registration Tax. This is levied at 10% of the declared value (see para.9) for 'urban' property, and 17% of the declared value for 'rural' property. (Most houses, even if they are in the middle of nowhere have been 'urbanised', and the 'rural' property mainly refers to land only, or land with an agricultural building on it). In some cases, the property being sold is owned by a Company, in which case I.V.A. (VAT) at a rate of up to 20% is payable on the declared value instead of the Registration tax. Italy Chiltons International will advise you if the property is urban, rural or Company owned.

b) - The Notary's fee. This amounts to approximately 2.5% of the total declared value of the property, with a minimum charge of approximately Euro 1,500.00. (The charges do vary between notaries).

c) - The Geometra's fee. for the conveyancing. These again can vary between Euro 500.00 and Euro 2,000.00 depending upon what work is involved in the conveyance.

d) - Agent's commission. Anything up to 6% of the full sale price. Italy Chiltons International charge 3%.



THE DECLARED VALUE. Is based on the official rateable value of the property which depends on the local Commune, the category and location of house and the size. this is generally considerably less than the actual purchase price. Taking this fact into account, all the charges as outlined in Para. 8 will normally add up to between 8% and 15% of the actual purchase price.



BANK ACCOUNT. While in Italy, it is wise for the Purchaser to open an external Euro bank account. Italy Chiltons International will assist you in this matter.



Once the property has been purchased, Italy Chiltons International will, wherever possible, organise for the utilities to be changed to the name of the new owner. We can also arrange for the utilities to be paid by 'direct debit' from the bank as well as introducing you to plumbers, electricians, decorators as well as many other services you may need. This is just one of the advantages you get when using Italy Chiltons International Estate Agents.



In some cases where by Italy Chiltons International Estate Agents are not the sole agents of the sold property; in other words the property has been introduced to you through one of our collaborating agents, then that agency will be involved in the sale process as well, however we are still very much actively involved following the process on a daily basis guaranteeing a smother purchase.



Finally, it is also important to understand that in Italy both the buyer and the seller pays an agreed commission to the selling Agency of the property. The buyer and seller both pay Italy Chiltons International Estate Agents pay anything from 3% depending on what has been agreed prior to any legalities taking place. This arrangement is written in the contract and agreed by the Notary as well as both the buyer and seller..


Buying a property in Italy can be quite complicating and long winded some times, however dealing with Italy Chiltons International Estate Agents we hope to take the stress and pressure away from you as much as possible.

If you require more information on the Compromesso visit expats in Italy web site click here.

If you need to ask any further questions or are not clear about any part of the purchase process.

click the link to email us - enquiry@italychiltons.net

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Phone: +39 3937 987654


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