Viewing Abruzzo property.
Today, the Italian government lifted restrictions to their lowest levels since the Corona virus struck.
Many shops bars and restaurants can now open and people are free to move around their region. As time moves on and more restrictions are lifted, people will once again begin searching for their dream Abruzzo property.
In this blog I would like to offer you advice on how to approach a potential offer on your favourite Abruzzo property.
Facts v Fiction.
Contrary to some peoples belief, Italian families particularly in the countryside, have created great wealth for themselves over the years.
After world war 2 families built up their assets by buying land, working hard and building. Families worked together to create properties for their future.
The determination to help future generations means that families have many properties at their disposal. Some of these properties are used by family members and some, for various reasons, are sold.
Introduction of second home taxes.
Up until around 8 years ago, Italian residents paid very little taxes on their properties. This meant that families could own many properties with very little, if any, expense.
When taxes were introduced on second properties this soon changed. The mentality of holding on to properties waivered when tax payments were demanded. However many families who fought and worked hard to create their empires, continue to hold on to assets and find ways to reduce tax bills.
Do not presume.
A huge misconception many of our property viewers have, is that an unfinished house, means that funds ran out. This, in most could not be further from the truth.
Many families built properties years ago when local planning was either non existent (before 1967), or when planning was less stringent. These same properties are often left un habitable for many years, until a family member either gets married, or decides to move there. This is done to avoid or reduce second home taxes due to them not being habitable.
Italian families are very proud of what they have created and often they sell not because they need money, but because a property is simply an excess one.
I would say 90% of our owners do not want to sell their properties. They built them or bought them to help secure the future of their children. I hear the same story of sacrifices almost every time I visit a new property.
Unfortunately for them, their children simply do not want them.
Free home in Abruzzo? No thanks.
It’s a hard concept for me to imagine coming for the UK, where mortgages are pretty much a given part of your life.
I struggle to understand sons and daughters who turn down free houses in the countryside in favour of an apartment just a mile down the road (but that’s a discussion for another blog!).
This kind of scenario is how and why most properties come up for sale (luckily for us!!!). Families will sell houses and offer the money to their children to help them set up where they want.
Sometimes people move for work, but in my experience, most people do not want the hassle of restoring older properties and young Italians simply love their convenience.
An apartment on a busy road, that may also need to be mortgaged, instead of a free detached farmhouse with stunning views, is much more desirable!
So why am I telling you this?
In my opinion, the more knowledge we have about how things work in Italy, the better chance we have of integrating with our new neighbours.
My advice to you when you are thinking of making an offer is to be above all, respectful. Understand the reason why people sell, be mindful of their sacrifices and consider that most people here in Abruzzo saw and survived the atrocities of world war 2, the Corona virus will not make anyone give away their homes.
It is also very easy to offend an Italian. Silly, disrespectful offers could be the excuse needed for the owner to change their mind about selling. Do not presume they all NEED to sell.
How not to offend in Abruzzo.
What you should be doing is looking at the local market, speaking to your agent and making offers based on YOUR budget, NOT based on what you think the personal situation of the seller is.
I have learned many times, after living here for almost 12 years, NOT to judge a book by its cover.
We all want the best deals on things we buy. I just want to give you an insight of the realty of most properties for sale. A sensible approach will be the best chance you have. Consider how you feel when you are selling and don’t believe everything you hear about the economic situation in Italy.
If you have a good relationship with your agent, work together to get the right deal and make friends with the sellers of your dream home in Abruzzo. By doing this, you will be repaid time and time again by these fantastic, proud people.
I look forward to meeting some of you here in beautiful Abruzzo very soon http://new.ahomeinitaly.com/book-a-viewing/