Buying Land In Italy: A Guide for Foreigners

buy land in Italy on a sunny day

The Dream and the Reality

For many owning a piece of Italy holds an undeniable charm. The rolling hills of Tuscany, the rugged Amalfi Coast, or the sun-drenched beaches of Sardinia – the possibilities are endless. But before you get swept away in romanticism, in this article we want to show you the practicalities and considerations involved in buying land in Italy, especially as a foreigner.

Navigating the Maze

The buying process itself can feel like navigating a labyrinth.

There’s research and selection, followed by crucial due diligence checks like verifying zoning restrictions and obtaining land records. Then comes the dance of offers, preliminary agreements, and finally, the official deed signing before a notary.

Every step comes with its paperwork, jargon, and potential stress.

Taxes and More Taxes

Owning land in Italy doesn’t come without its financial obligations.

Registration tax, based on the land value, will greet you at the door. And don’t forget the annual cadastral tax. Add to that the possibility of mortgage tax if financing is involved. Americans, remember, your foreign property income and capital gains need to be declared back home. However, the US-Italy Double Taxation Treaty might offer some relief.

What taxes are paid on the purchase of building land (terreno edificabile)?

Purchase from a private individual: In this scenario, a registration tax of 9% is payable on the cadastral value of the land, while the mortgage and cadastral taxes amount to 50 euros each; Purchase from a company: The sale is subject to a 22% VAT.

What taxes are paid on the purchase of agricultural land (terreno agricolo)?

The ordinary registration tax on the purchase of agricultural land is 15% of the land’s price (with a minimum of 1,000 euros), plus mortgage and cadastral taxes totaling 100 euros. The tax was increased from 12% to 15% as of January 1, 2016.

Beyond the Numbers

While the legalities are essential, remember the big picture. Are you looking to build your dream home, indulge in sustainable farming, or create a haven for nature walks? Each goal comes with its own set of practicalities. Building regulations, agricultural permits, and local infrastructure access all need to be factored in.

A Professional Team by Your Side

Going it alone is not recommended. Partnering with a team of experts – lawyers, real estate agents, and accountants familiar with foreign transactions – can smooth the path and address potential hurdles. Their local knowledge and expertise can save you time, money, stress, and headaches.

Embrace the Journey

Buying land in Italy can be an enriching journey, but it requires careful planning and realistic expectations. Embrace the cultural nuances, understand the legalities, and don’t shy away from seeking professional guidance. With the right approach, you will become the proud owner of Italian land.

Contact us for your land purchase in Italy