Housing and renting in Italy

Housing and renting in Italy

Moving to Italy is a dream for many people. Once that chance shows up, run with it. Italy is a vibrant country with alluring attractions and breathtaking scenery. Visiting Italy is an introversive experience. You will definitely want to live there for good. Therefore, after deciding to move to Italy, you need to get a housing by renting or buying.

When in a foreign country like Italy you will need a roof over your head. If you are staying for a few days, hotel accommodation will do. But if you are planning to be in the country for a long time, finding a house to rent is appropriate.

The Rental Process in Italy

One of the biggest hurdles you will face in Italy is finding a house. The Italian real estate market is not like any other. It is a bit different. You will find that property owners rent apartments directly. However, some private landlords work with agents during the lease negotiation. They do not like taking care of the lease themselves. 

You can still rent an apartment in Italy through an agent. This means as a tenant you will pay the agent’s fee. Basically, the fee is about 10% of one month’s rent.  When renting through a private owner, you have room to negotiate the rent. This is a major advantage because rental companies would not allow that.

Cost of Renting in Italy

The cost of renting in Italy will depend on the kind of house you are looking for. Also, the location matters. The size of the house too. While renting, you need to know that renting in the city will cost you more. However, if you can afford it, why not!

Searching for a house outside the city will lower the cost. The best part is, you can negotiate the cost of the rent. Italian landlords often ask for a one-month rent deposit plus one month’s rent. Note that some landlords will ask for a deposit of up to three months. The landlord is to refund the deposit when the lease expires. But after ensuring that there are no damages to the apartment.  

You will also notice that private homeowners don’t offer a rental contract. Beware of such because in case of anything you will not have any documentation to prove your tenancy. Stay clear of simple arrangements. Insist on having an official rental contract to avoid any problems in days to come.

Buying a House in Italy

More than 70% of Italians own homes. This means only a quarter of the population rents houses.  Many families are homeowners courtesy of family inheritance. When looking for a house to buy you will notice varying house prices. The prices differ from one region to the other.

In all European countries, buying a house in Italy is a bit cheaper. The mortgage interest rates are also low making buying a house pretty friendly. EU citizens don’t have any restrictions when buying a house in Italy.

You can engage the services of an estate agent when looking for a house to buy. Such agents have wide information and knowledge about the real estate market in Italy. Once you find the house you like, pay a 1% deposit to show assurance of your interest. However, your offer must come with a time limit to prevent the seller from accepting other offers.

Tenant’s Rights in Italy

Tenants have rights In Italy just like in any other country. These are rights that the landlord should not interfere with. Some of them are:

Making Improvements

You are free to make any improvements to your house but at your own cost. That means you can paint, change the floor or do some decorations for the house. But remember not to damage anything. But you have to revert the improvements you make when leaving the property. That is the rule of thumb.

Good Condition

The house you live in should be free from any defects. Everything should function properly. If that is not the case the landlord should work on it. The house should be safe to live in. it should also have access to clean water, electricity, and any other critical utility.

Peaceful Environment

As a tenant, you have the right to live on the property peacefully. During the rental contract, the landlord is not to disturb you at any cost. If the landlord needs to enter your house, you are to grant permission.

Documentation

It is important to keep all documentation on the house you eventually move into. For starters, the landlord has to register your tenancy directly with the municipality. In addition, keep all rental payment receipts.

What to Consider when Renting in Italy

Renting a house should not be all there is. There are some things you need to look out for. Get to know the following from the landlord.

  • Know whether you will heat water using electricity or gas. Both are pricey. Also, ask if you will pay the condo fee or if it’s inclusive of the rent.
  • Is the apartment furnished or not? This will help you budget for the appliances to get for your house.
  • Understand what it states in the contract about repainting. If the house requires repainting at the end of the contract, who is to incur the cost?
  • Get to know who is responsible for paying utilities. This varies from one landlord to another. If you are to pay then all utility bills should come in your name. This means you will receive them directly.
  • The landlord should also assure you that all utilities are compliant. We are talking about heating systems, gas, water, and electricity.