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Preliminary information to buy a home in Italy

Preliminary information to buy a home in Italy



The first step is the signing of an irrevocable offer to purchase, at our offices. When you will sign it, you will pay a deposit 5.000 €, this can be either held by the agency, and returned to you when you sign the preliminary sale agreement or cashed by the vendor and used as part of payment on the property.

The purchase proposal has a expiration date (usually 15 days from the signing), during which the seller will accept the proposal (and the deposit will become confirmation deposit) and he will bound to sell at the agreed price. Or the seller will reject the proposal and to the buyer will return the deposit.

In case of acceptance by the seller, but later renounced by the buyer, the deposit paid will not be refunded.


At this stage the seller and the buyer agree to the deal. This contract establishes the terms and conditions of the final contract. You will be expected to pay a deposit at this stage, which is usually 20% of the purchase price. In the event that the sale does not happen through the fault the buyer, the seller is entitled to keep the deposit as compensation. If is the fault of seller, the buyer will be entitled to compensation equal to double the deposit.

In addition to the data of the contracting parties, the compromise must indicate the manner and timing of the sale, the purchase date, the existence of mortgages on the house or other constraints.

The commission for the Real Estate Agent (3% on the selling price + VAT) must be paid simultaneously with this act.

The contract will be signed at our offices in Piazza Motta n. 28 in Orta San Giulio (No) and will be registered within 20 days of signing with the Inland Revenue, resulting in an expense of the buyer:

  • Registration tax 200 €, regardless of the price of the sale.
  • Stamp duty of 16 € for each copy, all 4 sides and in any case every 100 lines. At least 2 copies.
  • 50% on sums provided as a deposit. In these cases, the tax payable for the registration of the final contract will then be deducted the tax paid on the preliminary.


The document is drawn up by the Notary (Notaio), who represents both parties. The buyer, seller and estate agent are all required to be present for the signing of the contract at the Notary’s office.

The cost of the deed varies from time to time, depending on the house and the need buyer. It is not a percentage of the selling price as it happens in other countries! You have to ask every time the estimate to the notary.

For more information visit the link Taxes on Buying a House in Italy


There are some costs to be paid yearly:

  • Annual Tax (in Italian is IMU) is an annual council tax calculated on the value of the property. It is payable twice a year in June and December, even if it is possible to pay it once in December for non residents, by bank transfer or postal order,
  • Rubbish tax (in Italian is TASI) it is payable once a year by bank transfer or postal order.
  • Utilities (in italian is UTENZE) electricity, water and gas. In Italy, we are used to paying these with post bulletins, which you can not be paid from abroad.

The best thing to do is to automatically debit (in Italian DOMICILIAZIONE) bills on your bank account. Alternatively you have to call the supplier company and ask at what Iban code you can pay.

If there is a condo, it can happen that water or gas are common and therefore you should not make a personal contract, but you will pay your fee together with condo fees (see next item).

Condominium expenses there are if you buy a property which is part of a group of properties which share some communal areas like gardens, driveway, swimming pool etc. then you will be required to pay condominium expenses.

For any information about the process of buying a house in Italy, write to, I will be happy to answer your questions.

You must forgive me if my English is not professional, I do my best to help my clients.

Alice  –

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