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How life in Italy could offer so much...

The recent easing of prices for high end property in central London, admittedly after reaching eye watering levels, is perhaps little more than a pause as the country waits to discover just what kind of Brexit will occur and the colour of the next government.

The 2019 edition of the Deloitte Property Index reported the average transaction price of a new dwelling in London at €11,185 per square metre. For central Paris the equivalent figure was €12,910. These figures are in stark contrast to Milan where the average transaction price per square metre for a new dwelling was €3,637.

Of course, both within and outside the main cities, there are large variations. The Deloitte report showed prices in Paris to be at 321% of the French average and London not far behind at 298% of the UK average. In Italy this ratio falls to 157% for Milan and 144% for Rome.

Although there are significant regional variations in price across the country, and also large differences dependent upon the type of property, there can be little doubt that in terms of residential property it is still possible to get a lot more for your money in Italy than the UK or France.

At the time of writing Knight Frank are offering for sale at €5,000,000 a beautifully restored Tuscan farmhouse property approximately 14km east of Lucca. Set in the hills with open views on all sides, the property is around 620 square metres with a guest cottage, all within six hectares of grounds including sweeping lawns and an olive grove.

With a two-bedroomed apartment in the prized London district of Mayfair currently being advertised around the same price, it is little wonder that those seeking to leave the crowds and congestion of the city are taking a good look at la dolce vita of Italy.

On a grey and damp day in London or Paris it is only too easy to imagine oneself enjoying a glass of Chianti in Tuscany whilst gazing across rolling hills as the sun sets behind a pretty hilltop village in a seemingly timeless scene.

Such images have been immortalised in art, film and literature and certainly help explain why the region of Tuscany has become increasingly popular amongst expats with almost half coming from the UK alone in recent years.

As a country with a rich and varied landscape, Italy offers so much more than great cuisine and internationally renowned wines. It also has more UNESCO world heritage sites than anywhere else in the world with architectural styles including classical Roman, Renaissance, Baroque and Neoclassical. Italy also boasts a Mediterranean climate whilst offering skiing during the winter months in the Alpine mountains of the north.

Milan is one of the fastest growing large European cities with excellent transport links and a reputation as a business hub having built on its success in hosting the World Expo in 2015. Long since Italy’s financial capital as home to its stock exchange, and internationally renowned as one of the world’s four fashion centres, Milan is now increasingly attracting technology and other start-ups alike.  

If lifestyle factors are not persuasive enough, individuals wishing to relocate to Italy can also potentially benefit from the flat tax regime for new residents whereby an annual payment of €100,000 covers all tax obligations in Italy on income and capital gains from all non-Italian assets.

An increasing number of people have made a move on this basis and as successive Italian governments have supported this regime, with what’s on offer, it seems likely that these numbers will only increase. The Probus Group, with its Italian speaking staff, can help in all aspects of establishing your residency in Italy.

This article has been carefully prepared, but it has been written in general terms and should be seen as broad guidance only. The article cannot be relied upon to cover specific situations and you should not act, or refrain from acting, upon the information contained therein without obtaining specific professional advice. Please contact Probus Group to discuss these matters in the context of your particular circumstance. Probus Group, its partners, employees and agents do not accept or assume any liability or duty of care for any loss arising from any action taken or not taken by anyone in reliance on the information in this article or for any decision based on it.


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