Italy is home to a thriving property market, with many people choosing to rent their home, particularly in the country’s larger cities. Property prices vary enormously across the country in both the rental and sales sectors, with the North usually being more costly than the South, an important consideration when deciding where to live in Italy.
When moving to Italy, most international families find a home through a Rental Agency, although for those reluctant to pay high agency fees, it is still quite common to rent directly from the owner. In this case, many properties are still advertised through traditional channels such as noticeboards or in the classifieds section of the local newspaper.
Gate Away is a useful English language property portal with detailed information for renting or buying property in Italy. Although more expensive (agency fees are usually split between the landlord and the tenant), the support of an experienced rental agency used to dealing with International clients can be valuable, particularly for those who do not speak fluent Italian.
When renting accommodation in Italy, The average tenancy contract in Italy lasts for a period of around 4 years (and are renewable for a further 4) , although a “transitory” contract can be drawn up for stays of up to 18 months. Always be sure to check any required notice periods. Most deposits are 2 to 3 months rent and landlords can ask for several months rent upfront too. The high cost associated with moving in Italy reflects the fact that most people stay in one property for many years.
Almost all properties are unfurnished, which often means the tenant must provide everything themselves, including kitchen fittings, cabinets and all appliances. Tenants are liable to pay their own water and energy costs as well as a fee for upkeep of the communal areas and often contributions to the salary of a caretaker. When deciding where to live in Italy, ensure that any fees or charges are clearly listed in the tenancy agreement. It is also common for Italian rental contracts to include a clause that the property must be repainted once during your tenancy, with the money usually deduced from the deposit. To enjoy the benefits of this, be sure to ask that this is done at the beginning of your stay, or else it may only be undertaken when you move out.