How To Buy A House In Italy For 1 Euro

Author:Giambrone Law ILP

If you happen to have any friends or relatives living in Paris, London, Milan etc., you could have heard of living solutions known as chambre de bonne, studios, monolocali, which is to say tiny apartments from 9 square metres where you basically sleep, have breakfast and work in the same room. These kinds of accommodation are very common in big cities and especially in their city centres.

The phenomenon that brought millions of citizens to live in small rooms, often stacked like bees in a hive, is known as depopulation: "a situation in which many people leave a place to live somewhere else".

The obvious consequence of these migrations is an increasing number of semi-desert areas and of regions with worryingly low birth rate. The reasons are difficult to enumerate in an exhaustive way, but it is certain that bigger cities attract citizens from all peripheral regions looking for better opportunities, higher salaries, more services and so on. In 1950, an European citizen out of two was living in the city, now we have three out of four, and it is estimated that we will reach a 80% after 2030. Unfortunately, according to a survey carried out by the Eurostat, people living in big cities (especially in Paris and Rome) are the unhappiest, because of stress, smog, traffic, high costs of living and social inequality.

However, there is also a phenomenon trying to buck the trend: amenity migration, or migration to pleasant and quiet areas. A small part of the population is leaving the city and moving to semi-desert villages, surrounded by nature and silence.

In order to promote a homogeneous repopulation of the territory, the European Union and Italy have developed several project to re-bring population in rural areas: one of these projects is a business support project called Philoxenia, which offered businessmen a combination of grants and subventions to create start-ups in rural areas of Greece, Italy, Cyprus, Slovenia and Malta.

Another project involves selling houses for only 1 euro to save rural areas from becoming real ghost towns.

In Sardinia, there are two villages participating in the project. The first is Ollolai, in the Barbagia area, where the first house for one euro was sold last winter. The houses are sold through a Municipality open notice and are freely given to the Municipality by the old tenants, in order to allow new tenants, be them Italian, foreigners or companies, to go to Ollolai and revive the centre, be it Italian...

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