Hi, I'm new to the forum and am

09/06/2014 - 05:07

Hi, I'm new to the forum and am very interested in the discussions about property prices in Italy. We have been looking in Chieti Provice in Abruzzo and in Molise. We have seen several properties (2 bedroom, 1 bath) in hill villages for around 30,000 euros, with decent roof and only cosmetic work needing to be done inside, work we are happy to do ourselves. I'm now a little worried we are missing something, or are we just looking in a less expensive area?



Hi Maggymay, forgive me, but a lot of posts come on here and other forums which are from let's say not too genuine people. Certainly not saying anything in your post indicates such, but just to make you aware that you may get what looks like odd or cautious replies - or none at all indeed!Ok to be a little impolite again to a newbie, rude I know, but sure you would want honest answers!I know it's odd to make a first post not knowing how much detail to put etc,,, But believe me after reading many (including looking back at our 1st attempt years back), it pays to give it some thought and do your research 1st before being too keen and jumping in with both feet. Very exciting times and you have every right to be so, it is everything we dreamed of and more. However everything is not as we pictured it and many things are not what we expected, mostly little things and all in all everything outweighed by the good side of it, some even better than we imagined.So your post says to me you have not read every post on every forum and not yet done your homework, possibly very wrong I know as you may well have done so and just not posted the fact? I note you say they have a good roof and just need cosmetic work, have you seen these for yourself yet? Where you are looking is cheaper than most other parts of Italy and in general we found the further South the cheaper - there is always a reason! The market is very good for buyers at the moment in my opinion, so you would expect a good deal, but a house up for 30000 is likely not worth 20000. Ok could be a bit of an exaggeration, but it won’t be far out. Modicasa on here is an estate agent, so might give a better response. Not my favourite people to say the least, but this guy is an honest gem. I’ll embarrass him by saying you could do worse than look at his book on buying (we’ve not as we have bought), it’s definitely worth having a book about the subject, even at 30,000 a few quid is nothing…What issues are you aware of about buying? If any, then google them and see what sites come up with information e.g. “internet connection abruzzo forum” will bring up lots of information.Molise we looked at and decided against even going there to look at houses, rightly or wrongly we came to the conclusion there were indications that water shortages there were more common and flight access much harder. Both were major on our list to start with, but now I would see neither as anything you cannot overcome.Hope I’ve not put you off what is a fabulous thing to do…  Post away a link of one of the houses, there is little or no chance of it being snapped up! Note we started looking more than 6 years ago now and some of the properties for sale then are still up for sale now (a lot).

Thanks, Steve, for your detailed reply. Yes, as a first post it's difficult to know how much detail to put it in. I have been reading various blogs and forums for a couple of years but this is the first time I have ever posted.We are Australian and semi retired. 10 years ago we spent 9 months living in Umbria, near Umbertide doing freelance work mostly in the UK.We would have loved to buy a holiday house then, but family and finances precluded it. Since then we have visited Italy almost every year and now our circumstances have changed,for the past couple of years have been seriously looking for a house to use 6 months of the year as a "lock and leave." We soon realised Umbria is now out of our price range and, as it's easy to fly into Rome from austalia, Abruzzo seems like a good choice. We have been on the verge of making an offer twice, both times after consulting our Australian Italian speaking property lawyer who specialises in Italian purchases. In fact one of those houses we had been following for 6 months online and saw it in June this year. We are back in Italy in October and November, this time staying in Abruzzo, hence my interest in the forumThanks also for the tip about Molise, I didn;t realise the rainfall was a problem, but as a couple living off the grid here (Solar power, bottled gas, lots of water tanks) we would not be averse to putting in a rainwater tank, given the right property and Commune permission.  

See Maggy you could have saved me loads of time ha!  You probably know more about Italy than us!!!  So 6 month here and 6 there (where ever they might be). Guess you have looked at and know about the residency and tax situation then?  Do you mean you were going to offer based on viewing on-line? You really do need to look at the place in person.. Think motorway access if Abruzzo and you want to get to Rome, you don't have to be next to it, but near an SS road that is close is good, but dearer as Italians love their motorways... Both Chieti/Pescara and North Teramo/L'Aquila are well served with good motorway access to Rome (both join on the way). In fact even all down the coast from Rosetto to Pescara and further are easy access. Get in touch if you want any more specific information.

Hi MaggyI'm in a similar situation, looking at properties in the sameish area, southern marche, which has good connections to rome too, I would suggest getting in touch with this guy who helped me from making a mistake, he's very good, anglo italian, and has very good knowledge of the various pitfalls that one may come across...good luck!www.sites.google.com/site/buildersinspections

Slightly blushing,  here's my 2 pennorth worth.   In little hill towns away from the coast, and tourist areas, there is no reason why you cant find a decent house for 30.000 euros - but - even though it seems cheap, dont be afraid to bargain and offer below the asking price.  IF its on the open market its because the locals aren't interested.    Then, you need to know that the paperwork is in order - usually houses are cheap because there is a problem - if not structural or with the house itself, then with the paperwork.   However, if you're using an agent they have a legal obligation to make sure the paperwork is in order.    If the house next door, above or below is falling to bits, then thats agood clue as to why its cheap - its very difficult to force neighbours to pay for essential works - and you may well end up paying to restore two houses instead of one.good luck. 

Don't blush, there are quite a few people on this forum think your advice is worth more than tuppence!Seriously though, I'm glad you don't think we are compeltely bonkers. Abruzzo is a fairly new concept to us but the more we read about it the more we feel it's like Umbria was in the mid to late 90's when we first spent lots of time there.A house in a small hill town is exactly what we are looking at. We live on a small farm in Australia, but village life is what we crave when in Italy. Thanks for the advice about condition (and especially the adjoining house/s bit). Although we are looking or a house where the structural work has been done, an expert inspection is alway a safe thing before one commits.We are renting in Vasto for a couple of months from October so hopefully that will give us time to sort out which areas we like and see some likely properties. I have made contact with Immobiliere, ABrusso Rural Property and will try Vignaverde as suggested by someone on the forum. Any other agents names would be appreciated. 

Hi maggymay,We also stayed in Vasto when we were considering buying in Abruzzo.Its a wonderful city.If you look at prairepaintbrush question on buying in Abruzzo you will see my recommendation of "Better Property"who are local to the area and have their office in Pollutri which is quite close to Vasto.Any further info let me know.  

Okay here's my two-penneth worth. You can still find good houses requiring only cosmetic work here in Regione Chieti, my advice is don't be afraid to bargain, I got my house for over 20K off the asking price, just be brave and offer what you want to offer. Okay mine may have been a unique situation, but I know similar people who have viewed houses here in the 50k bracket and purchased them for 30k.Obviously the closer to the coast you get the higher the price, but if you take time to visit the area you may get a bargain by just checking out the private sale signs like I did. My main advice with estate agents is make sure they will definitely show you the property you see advertised, not a random selection they think you'll like. One question to ask when you see one you like on the web is: Is this property still for sale, at this asking price and are you the sole agent? If they say yes, ask for it in writing. If it is genuinely on their books they wont see it as a problem  confirming they have it to sell.Some estate agencies here bump up the prices for foreign buyers, so check their websites carefully and if you see any of their properties advertised with other agents ask why, some will share the sale but most want exclusive contracts. Some actually copy of each other's sites to make their portfolio look more impressive.As with buying property anywhere there are some good, some bad and some downright dreadful agents, sadly most of buying abroad is about putting your faith in the one that has the house you want.

Thanks Barry, that's really good advice for anyone, no matter where they are buying.So far I have been dealing direct with two large local agents. We have been very clear on our requirements (I'm a spreadsheet junkie) and have fed them details of some properties they are handling which LOOK interesting online. Positive results from both of them in that they have pointed out some negatives with our possible choices, given lots more detail and suggested other possibilities. Have not yet come accross a property listed and have them tell me it's not for sale. And we have kept a careful eye on multi agent listings.By and large they have both kept within our budget and requirements and have several times stressed that a property price is open to negotiation. With the number of properties available (we have a long list of about 35) I think most of them will be very negotiatable.  As a serial house renovator (15 in 20 years) I know there is no such thing as a perfect house. There will always be another. If we don't find one this trip, there's always next year, or renting, as Steve pointed out.Anyway as you say, it's about chemistry and having faith in the agent. We will see in 3 weeks.

Don't give up hope on finding something in Umbria.  I just closed on a 59sqm apartment in a picturesque hilltop town in the Province of Perugia, 30 mins from Assisi and Perugia, for Euro9500.  It needs cosmetic refurbishment inside but everything else is in ok nick.I spent an awful lot of time researching to eventually find my place, but there are still places out there!