By: Nikki Taylor
Have you ever taken a trip to Italy and had a piece of your heart stolen by the beautiful country in a way that made you think, “I want to own my own home here!” You are not alone, but when most people dream of purchasing property in Italy, the fear of what could go wrong overrides the dream. This is with good reason.
Italy is famous for its beauty and is equally famous for its bureaucracy. So it’s really no surprise that many people dream of buying property in Italy but never go through with it for the fear of what could go wrong.
The internet is rife with conflicting information, horror stories about shady estate agents and deals going wrong. Imagine trying to manage a real estate transaction whilst you’re in your own country and above all, not speaking the language?
And considering that most properties need some sort of home improvement or renovation, how do you even begin to start to think about that?
>Terrifying right? Well it doesn’t need to be.
After many years of working in the real estate industry in Italy and coming across countless clients expressing their fears and doubts about purchasing property in Italy, I decided to create a bespoke program.
Before I delve into this, let me give you a background about my journey and how I ended up living in one of the most beautifully chaotic countries in the world; Italy, or as the Italians call it “il bel paese”.
My Journey to La Dolce Vita
My love affair with Italy began nearly 20 years ago. At 21, I had moved to London from Perth, Australia and knew nothing of the world. My only foray into travelling was a trip to Thailand and the idea of Europe seemed so far-fetched that I had never seriously thought about it until moving to London with the idea of staying a few months and seeing how it went. I ended up staying 12 years.
I always had a fascination with Italy, but it wasn’t until I went to Florence on a weekend getaway that something switched inside of me. The beauty at every angle, the architecture, the elegantly dressed women with their high heels clicking away on the cobbled stones --- not to mention the incredible food, wine, and handsome men---made me fall in love with it. I was hooked.
Growing up in Australia, which is a very young country from an architecture and historical aspect, I was totally in awe of Italy. I remember marvelling at the Duomo in Florence and saying to myself, one day I am going to retire here. Considering I was 21 at the time, retirement was a long way off. It all seemed like a pipe dream and was quickly forgotten
I travelled a few times to Italy in the 12 years I lived in London and each time my love affair for this beautiful country grew and grew. The idea of living there seemed so out of my reach but I knew I wanted to make it happen.
It wasn’t until December of 2013 when things started to fall into place. I was living back in Australia; I had moved to Sydney in 2012 and pretty much had the perfect life: An amazing apartment with harbour bridge view, an excellent social circle, a secure six-figure income working for one of the world’s top investment banks. But I was dissatisfied with my life and felt extremely burnt out from working in a high stress environment. My health was suffering.
I felt like my soul was craving cultural nourishment. I wanted to live my life instead of being cooped-up in an office environment twelve hours a day. I wanted to immerse myself into a new culture, learn a new language, I wanted to fall in love with a dark-haired devastatingly handsome man. In my heart, I knew Italy was the answer.
I was 34 at the time and knew if I didn’t make the move now it would never happen. I didn’t let the fact that the only Italian I knew was “ciao bella” and various swear words that I won’t mention stop me. I signed up for a six-week Italian course at the local language school in Sydney and started putting my plans into action.
Most of my family and friends thought I was absolutely crazy to leave my secure life in Sydney to move to Italy where the economy is famously unstable and there was no guarantee that I could find work.
But lucky for me, and for you, I didn’t listen to my head but my heart and at the end of 2014 I sold all my furniture and arrived in Italy with four suitcases.
I relocated to the charming mountainous town of Bolzano, which is situated in Italy’s far North-East, on the Austrian border.
Upon arrival in Bolzano, I was lucky enough to find a job, which required me to speak English working for a global luxury real estate firm called Engel & Völkers in their marketing department.
The Call of the Sea
As much as I absolutely loved the village and the stunning mountains of Bolzano; I missed the beach. I guess that is the Aussie in me, I grew up by the beach and its part of my soul. I knew that the best beaches in Italy were in the south so I started doing some research. My Italian teacher from Sydney was from Apulia, the far south of Italy, which is the heel shaped part of the boot of the country.
I remember Googling Apulia and being totally in love with the stunning coastline and quaint Baroque style seaside towns. I moved down to Monopoli, and started working for a real estate and luxury holiday rentals firm as a Business Development & Marketing Director. My role was to oversee all the international client real estate transactions and manage them smoothly.
It was then that I realized a common theme that was occurring with the clients that I was managing. Many of which had the same questions, doubts and fears about purchasing a property in Italy, the process and how they could manage this whilst living overseas.
An idea was born
This is what inspired me to create a free online global community on Facebook called “How to Confidently Buy Property in Italy” and my signature program also named “How to Confidently Buy Property in Italy”. My vision was to alleviate the fears and doubts concerning the property purchase process in Italy and provide useful and valuable information to the members of the community.
I wanted to provide a totally holistic service and thus undertook lengthy due diligence and created a network of industry leaders. Professionals such as property lawyers, visa and immigration specialists, accountants, currency experts and financial planners have all become part of my community, where we guide the members how to navigate their way through the Italian property system with ease and confidence. There are so many people who have fallen foul to the common costly pitfalls that arise in the Italian real estate industry. Our mission is to help our members avoid these mistakes.>/p>
The next logical step after a property purchase is to start thinking about restoration or improvement, and my masterclass “How to Confidently Renovate Property in Italy” was created.
As many people want to purchase property to utilize as a Holiday Rental I have created a bespoke masterclass on Property Management and Home Staging where we discuss how to correctly identify your ideal client and “stage” your Holiday Rental property accordingly to ensure customer satisfaction and repeat bookings!
I receive messages regularly from my community members sharing their gratitude to me for creating the group and program which thrills me no end that my idea and vision is helping hundreds of people around the world create their own slice of La Dolce Vita like I did and live out their dream.
We are just about to walk into a new decade, why not listen to that niggling sensation that is in your soul about Italy and delve in to creating your dream life and purchasing your dream home? I would love to be able to guide and support you on this.
Your Dolce Vita awaits you!
Get in touch
If you have been inspired by my story and are looking to purchase property in Italy, please click on the link below to join our free community “How to Confidently Buy Property in Italy” where you will gain access to an abundance of valuable information along with a network of professionals helping you achieve your goal. https://www.facebook.com/groups/2433791586902154/
My Kindle Ebook
I have written a Kindle Ebook about my journey, and delving further into the progam I offer and giving some absolute golden tips about the property purchasing process here in Italy and things to look out for.