The Italian houses being sold for €1!

If you are dreaming of buying a property in a pretty little Italian town you may be interested to know that it could be possible for you to buy your own property in Italy for just €1!

“Hang on… what’s the catch the catch?” we hear you ask.

Erm well before you eagerly reach down the back of the sofa for that euro that has been lurking there since your last holiday, you should know that there are some strings attached.

The Italian town of Ollolai is a pretty mountain town, located in central Sardinia described as boasting friendly locals, a relaxing vibe and delicious cuisine.

In recent decades however the population of the town has significantly dwindled to just 1,300 inhabitants. Many of Ollolai’s historic stone houses have therefore been abandoned and left to fall into disrepair.

In a bid to prevent further decline and the town from becoming a ghost town, the local mayor, Efisio Arbau, has launched the scheme to sell the properties for less than a cup of espresso to try to tempt buyers from around the world to purchase a property in Ollalai and boost its population and rejuvenate the local community.

Each of the houses available on the €1 scheme requires significant restoration however. It is therefore a condition of purchase that the buyer ensures that the property is restored. Restoration must begin within one year and must be completed within three years. The anticipated costs of this are likely to be around €30,000.  The property must not be sold within five years from the purchase.

In additional to being able to fund the restoration buyers will also need to pay for the additional property purchase costs applicable in Italy such as the taxes and legal fees. Due to the unusual nature of the purchase and the conditions attached, robust legal advise from an Italian lawyer would need to be sought to ensure that the conditions and the obligations of the buyer are clearly understood.

Anyone tempted by the properties available in Ollolai should make their application by the February 7th is the deadline.

According to the town’s mayor, the number of requests already made in relation to the properties exceeds the number of houses currently available, and each of the applications with be dealt with on a ‘first come..’ basis.

This scheme is not the only one of its kind however. Similar incentives have been tried out by mayors in other Italian towns also under threat by depopulation.

The municipalities with active schemes include Patrica (Lazio), Lecce de Marsi (Abruzzo) Fabbriche di Vergemolì (Tuscany), Montieri (Tuscany), and Carrera Ligure (Piedmont). Further information can be found on the scheme’s website, Case a €1 Euro.

If you are thinking of buying a property in Italy, please do not hesitate to contact Total Buying Abroad for advise and assistance to ensure you buy property safely and efficiently and avoid any pitfalls.

Call us on 01244 478 911 or email

You can also download our Guide to Buying Property in Italy (see the right side of this page) for further information about buying property in Italy.

Article published: January 31, 2018