Guide to buying property in Tuscany

Tuscany is a firm favourite for foreign buyers considering purchasing a property in Italy and it’s not difficult to see why! Striking landscapes, a relaxed culture, temperate climate and gems of cities like Florence, Pisa, Lucca and Siena are at the core of Tuscany’s charm. It’s hardly surprising that many people come away from Tuscany wanting their very own slice of it. But where are the best places in Tuscany to buy a property? What is the process when buying a property in Tuscany? And how much does it cost to buy a property in Tuscany?

Here’s our quick guide to Buying in Tuscany to help make purchasing you dream property in Tuscany as stress-free and safe as possible.

Where are the best places to buy a property in Tuscany?

Where you choose to buy in Tuscany is a very personal choice and will depend entirely on what you want to get from your property. Maybe you want a peaceful rural retreat? Or perhaps you’d rather be immersed in the culture and history of one of Tuscany’s many wonderful cities? Either way the good news is that wherever you choose to buy, Tuscany’s property market is very stable and remains an extremely good investment.

Florence Tuscany’s capital, Florence is the perfect place for art lovers, packed full of world-famous paintings, architecture and sculptures at every turn. It may become a bustling hub for tourists in the summer months, but its charm in undeniable. Attracting year-round visitors, a property in Florence makes for a great holiday let, with one-bedroom city centre apartments fetching as much as €1,000 per week. But, understandably, property doesn’t come cheap. You can expect to pay in excess of a €250,000 for a small central apartment.
Coastal TuscanyCoastal Tuscany is one of the most expensive areas to buy Tuscany, especially the islands of Elba and Giglio, and in the northern part of the province, where the mountainous backdrop to the resorts make it a popular destination to both holiday and live. There are areas in the southern part of Tuscany below Livorno, that are somewhat overlooked, though, where you might just snap up a bargain!
Eastern TuscanyArezzo is primed as a hotspot for savvy property investors in Tuscany, with central apartments costing as little as €150,000 and the surrounding countryside, is even cheaper. While properties with the expansive hillside views from Cortona and Montepulciano, are likely to set you back as much as €300,000.
Central TuscanyCentral Tuscany epitomises the romantic vision of Tuscany, with its rolling hills, miles of cypress trees and voluminous vineyards, and the property prices here reflect that! In fact, it’s the most expensive place to buy rural property in the world. To give you a picture of property costs, a restoration project can cost in excess of half a million.
Northern TuscanyLucca and its surrounding countryside offer a more affordable option for buyers in Tuscany, despite properties having increased in value significantly over the last decade or so. In the areas of Garfagnana and Lunigiana Tuscan property-hunters may find a particularly good deal with restoration projects going for as little as €60,000.
Southern TuscanyThe south is Tuscany’s least-known and least-popular area, so property prices in this region are among the lowest in Tuscany. If you’re after the quiet life and a bargain though, there are some gems to be found in the likes of Pitigliano and Saturnia, for instance. Sorano and Sovana’s Etruscan relics can also entice visitors, so there’s scope for attracting discerning tourists.

 

What is the process when buying a property in Tuscany?

It’s advisable to be prepared, get your finances in orderand have some helpful contacts in place before you start making any offers on a property when buying a property in Tuscany! An English-speaking lawyer will be able to guide you through the process and help you obtain a Codice Fiscale (fiscal number) which is mandatory when buying a property in Tuscany and set up a bank account.

Setting up an account with a currency specialist is also advisable as they can typically save you 3-5% of the value of the transaction when transferring funds from one currency to another, compared to using your high street bank. Find out more about how a currency specialist can save you money: Why you should consider using a currency exchange specialist when purchasing a property overseas.

If you require a mortgage or are considering the option of getting a mortgage in Italy for your Tuscan property purchase you should seek advice before arranging a property viewing trip, to ascertain your mortgage options. In Italy, most mortgage lenders require a minimum 40 per cent deposit and the lending criteria can be much stricter than the UK, for instance. So, it’s worth speaking to a mortgage advisor with experience of the Italian mortgage system who can offer an assessment of whether you are likely to be offered a mortgage.

Once you’re organised, you can arrange a viewing trip, enjoy sussing out the property market in Tuscany and really start the ball rolling with your property purchase. Once you’ve found your dream property and had an offer accepted your lawyer will guide you through the three-stage buying process. Make sure you DO NOT sign anything or pay any deposits to the estate agent or seller before seeking legal advice from an Italian property lawyer though.

What is the cost of buying a property in Tuscany?

On top of the cost of the property that you choose, you should factor in at least 10-15 per cent for additional costs, including:

  • Notary fees – this is charged as a percentage of the property value at up to 3%
  • Legal fees – legal fees are charged as a percentage of the property value, usually between 1-2%
  • Land registry tax – this is usually of one-off cost of approximately €200
  • Property purchase tax (Registration tax) – similar to stamp duty in the UK, for instance, this varies between 1% and 9% depending on a number of factors, including your residential status, whether it’s a first home and whether it’s your only property, for instance.

These are the basic costs that you should factor in, but there may be further costs involved with some property purchases in Tuscany. For more detailed information read: How much does it cost to buy a property in Italy?

For more information about buying property in Tuscany or other areas in Italy, you can download our FREE buying guide or check out our Italian blog for the latest information and news about buying a property in Italy!  

If you need an independent Italian English-speaking lawyer or other helpful property professional contacts, including a currency specialist and mortgage advisor, contact the team at Total Buying Abroad for a recommendation on 01244 478911 or email info@totalbuyingabroad.com

Article published: November 12, 2018