CHECKLIST AFTER PURCHASE
Checklist after purchase
Here are some items you will need to think of now that you are the proud owner of a home in Italy.
If you have bought a second home arrange for somebody to manage it for you. You will need somebody on the spot, the level of service you will need depends on your individual requirements. Even if it is just to have your post opened and checked, you will need help. You will probably need the combined help of a manager, a cleaner and a gardener. If there is already a cleaner or gardener at the house check if they wish to continue even for a short while. They will teach you a great deal about your new home and probably know it better than the previous owners. They can teach you or your manager how everything works and who currently maintains the services.
- If possible, get a list of all the service Contractors, plumber, electrician, builder etc. again they will know the house, you can always change later.
- If you are restoring or renovating try to use local professionals. They will know best where to source materials and who else to deal with locally. The local architect or Geometra should have excellent relations with the local authorities, this is vital and can save a lot of time and achieve what you want. Even if you have already found an architect, it may be worth having a local to deal with obtaining permissions.
- Transfer of services: For most services the previous owner will have a user number or code. Try to obtain copies of all bills so you can transfer them rather than apply for a new service from scratch which will certainly cost more. Your Estate agent should be able to help with this.
- Telephone http://www.telecomitalia.it/ and Electricity http:www.enel.it/enelenergia/it-IT/clienti/servizi_online/voltura_subentro/ can now be done online. You will need the details of the previous contract and will have to send them a signed contract with a copy of an identity document and your Tax code (codice fiscale).
- Water: If the property has mains water, depending on the area, it will be supplied by a private firm or the local Authority.
- Gas: If your property is in the country you will probably have a large gas tank – normally supplied by the company at the start of supply and provided free but they own the tank. The installation has to have been approved and the documentation should include a Fire Prevention Certificate. This may need renewing after five years and you will need the original in order to renew which you can usually do through the company supplying the gas. Don’t count on being sent a reminder. For mains gas, you may need to go to the nearest office to carry out the changeover.
- Annual Property Tax (IMU) payable twice a year in June and end November. Reintroduced 2012 for all homeowners. The tax is paid to your local authority and is based on a percentage (nationally set at 0.076 but open to variations locally) of the Registered Value of the property. It is advisable to get an accountant (Commercialista) to do this for you since you may also have to pay some Income Tax (IRPEF) EVEN IF YOU ARE NON RESIDENT. The basis on which you pay and who has to pay change frequently so get professional advice. The basis for paying is that your property is considered an income and if the amount is above the threshold foreigners, including non residents, are bound to fill in a tax return and pay. Local Accountants probably will not speak English but, if you have somebody managing your property for you they can take care of it on your behalf.
- Waste Collection Tax (Rifiuti Solidi Urbani): It can be paid in installments or as one lump sum, usually either at a Bank or in a local office. Ensure that you have informed the Comune that you are the new owner, bringing a copy of a previous bill to them and give them an address as to where to send the notification. The tax is based on the size of the property and theoretical no. of inhabitants. If you live in the country there is unlikely to be an actual collection at the property. Rubbish should be sorted and taken to the bins placed around your nearest town or, possibly, along your nearest main road. Currently there are facilities for paper (yellow bins) organic material (brown bins ) plastic and glass (round bins) and the occasional special bins for medicines and batteries. Big items such as furniture, white goods and building waste need to be taken to special dumps. Your local Authority should have information.
- Septic Tank: If you are not connected to the main sewerage system but have some form of septic tank you will need to have it emptied occasionally, some authorities have imposed an annual maintenance, you need to get a certified receipt from the specialist firm that empties. When the system was installed it would have had an authorization ‘autorizzazione allo scarico’. Recently laws have been passed that this needs to be renewed, in some areas it is every four years and in some now annually. Again you are unlikely to get any notification so check with a professional. Your local Authority will have a copy of the original authorization if you did not get it from the previous owner.
- Local Tax: In some areas there is also a local tax, often these taxes were initiated after the war to improve underdeveloped areas and they have remained. In our area for example there is the ‘Bonifico Val di Chiana’ They never amount to a great deal and notification is sent to the owner, they can be paid in installments or twice annually, usually through a Bank, Post Office or in a dedicated office. They are often forgotten by owners or confused with the refuse tax so do check as to whether there is a tax applicable in your area.
- Maintain your sense of humour and patience.
- Try to learn some basic Italian
Checklist after purchase.pdf
PROJECT AND PROPERTY MANAGEMENT
Many of our clients purchase properties that need restoration or second homes which need attention while they are not in Italy, others wish to rent their properties. We have tried to set out below what services we can offer to help you enjoy your new home to the maximum with the least amount stress. We can offer this service locally, to do our job properly we need to be within a reasonable distance from the property otherwise we shall try to help finding a management service.
We try to tailor our management to your requirements so the monthly cost may vary from client to client within three levels of service.
This will probably include:
- Receiving all mail.
- Checking if there are bills to be paid and informing you.
- Keeping a set of keys to the house for emergencies or if repairs or maintenance need to be carried out.
- You pay all the bills and arranges standing orders for regular bills.
- We receive all mail
- We make arrangements for standing orders and pay all outstanding bills
- We arrange through an accountant the payment of the Annual Property tax, Refuse Tax and, if applicable, the end of Year Tax return (Please see Checklist after Purchase).
- We check the house regularly, ensure all the services are working and inform you of any repairs or maintenance that needs carrying out.
- We arrange for a cleaner and gardener if required and ensure the house is ready for you on arrival. We can also arrange for their payment.
- We arrange the opening and closing of a swimming pool if needed.
- We send you a monthly account of all the Bank and cash movements.
- For those who may be renting the property when they are not there we can arrange a truly comprehensive service.
- On top of the general service we would be available to see all clients in and out of the house
- Arrange for weekly pool cleaning as well as the opening and closing.
We have worked in our area for over thirty years and have built up excellent relationships with the best local craftsmen in the area. During the 1990’s the majority of property for sale needed complete restoration so we have had long experience in overseeing major restoration work. It is not for the faint hearted and you need a sense of humour and lots of patience however to see the roofless wreck with that incomparable view transformed into the house of your dreams can also be very exciting and we hope to make it fun for you. You need to allow 18 months to two years for a full restoration. The majority of the properties for sale now are already finished so it may be just a question of adding a bathroom, renewing a roof or landscaping a garden. Our service can be tailored to your needs. What is always essential is to have someone on site who can send regular reports of the work in progress, translate estimates and generally replace the owner at every stage of the work.
Our aim is to make your project as trouble free as possible so you can truly enjoy the process.
Our service will include:
- Sourcing the best architect/geometra/engineer for your particular needs
- Sourcing craftsmen - builders, electricians, plumbers, carpenters
- Working through estimates with the specialists, tendering them out if necessary and translating them
- Following up on the state of permissions/concessions. Obtaining planning permission for structural works can be slow and it is important to have people who are known and trusted by the local authorities and to keep following up with them. The time can usefully be used in choosing the craftsmen and finalising the estimates so that when the permits are ready you can start immediately.
While the specialists take care of overseeing in their particular roles from Health and safety to ensuring the building works are following the required specifications, it is essential to have someone on site regularly to replace the owner and report back on progress and to ensure that the client’s requirements are always being fulfilled. Communications are now so wonderfully instantaneous we can always keep you up to date.
Overseeing all the final costings
At the end of work it may be necessary to make changes in the Building register (Catasto), ensure the end of work has been deposited with the local authorities and obtain any certificates from them or the craftsmen.
If you have any questions or require further information do contact us, we are here to help.