There is something permanent,
and something extremely profound,
in owning a home.

Kenny Guinn

Purchasing steps

Narrowing down your big-picture homeownership goals will point you the right direction. 
First thing, let’s meet and discuss about four key points:

  1. Location, location and location… Which one?
  2. What type of home best suits your needs?
  3. What specific features will your ideal home have?
  4. Should you buy a home or an investment property?

Our in-depth research starts with the location; once identified, we can then focus on the property.
You'll be surprised to see how easy is to buy a home in Italy: here at Lakeside we work hard to make the procedure the smoothest and the clearest for you. 
We don’t hide that the bureaucratic, technical and legal side of the sale is often very complicated, but no panic: our team is ready to face any obstacle and solve it ASAP. 
Furthermore, our private Technical Office is an added value of our efficiency.

What we want you to know is that most of the hard work is somehow invisible to buyers, as it’s made by Lakeside as soon as a property takes part into our portfolio: checking of the Cadastral situation, verifying the building and urban license to avoid not compliant works, fixing what hasn’t been legally approved by the Authorities.
Furthermore, as licensed realtors we have a deep knowledge in Technical & Private Law: what we do is a detailed analysis of the property, which will be double checked again by the Notary at a later stage. 
In other words, we provide a full 360° screening at every single property we handle.

To make it easier, we have summed up for you the three key steps of each sale procedure: offer, Preliminary Agreement contract and Notary contract.
You’ll see: with the right partner on your side, the whole process won’t look that difficult anymore!



You make an offer to the Seller: we like the idea to ease things for our clients, so we usually suggest to start with a verbal one. This way you don’t waste your time and strive in long written contracts, which might result useless if price offered is not accepted by the Seller.



  • Once “verbal” price and conditions have been accepted by the Seller, then comes what we call Preliminary Agreement Contract (“Compromesso”): this document clearly defines the whole transaction. 
  • In the Preliminary Agreement Contract we deeply focus on all the most important points: your details as a Buyer, the Seller’s ones, the property price, the Cadastral references, maps, building licenses, the final date for the Notary contract, the deposit and purchasing conditions…in a word, everything. 
  • Once the contract is signed by both parties, the Buyer can send a deposit directly to the Seller’s bank account: we know that it’s not common abroad. Don’t worry, nobody forces you to do that: we understand that it’s not a matter of lack of trust, rather an easy solution to keep the deposit safer into a special Notary Bank Account.
  • Normally, a further deposit is paid if the date of the Notary contract is postponed due to: a) works in progress in case of new constructions, or b) long period of times passing between the Preliminary Agreement Contract and the final Notary contract (i.e. more than 3/4 months). 



  • The Buyer, who pays the Notary, decides which one involving for his contract. 

In Italy, the Notary is responsible for all parties and he’s legally liable for all documents being checked.

  • The day of the final contract, all documents are signed by both parties: the Buyer becomes the new legal owner. Congratulations!

Sales-related costs

In addition to the property price, during our dealing you will face some costs related to the sale. 
Two are the questions we ask to our clients: 

  • Are you buying as a resident or as a non-resident?
  • Would you like to buy a brand-new property from a Builder or from a Private Owner?

Thereinafter you can find an overview of the above-mentioned costs, depending on the two aspects just mentioned:

  Buying as a resident*   Buying as a NON-resident
From a private owner 2% as Registry Tax on the cadastral value** PLUS for both:
Mortgage Tax ?€ 50
Land Registry
€ 50
9% as a Registry Tax on the cadastral value**
From a Builder 4% VAT on the price PLUS for both:
Registry Tax
€ 200
Mortgage Tax ?€ 200
Land Registry
€ 200
10% VAT on the price
In case of a Loan request Tax “Imposta sostitutiva”***
0,25 % on the total amount of loan released
  Tax “Imposta sostitutiva” ***
2% on the total amount of loan released

* Resident
Buyers falling into this category, who decide to live permanently in Italy, have up to 18 months after the purchase date to register as Italian residents.

** Cadastral Value
It’s determined by the Land Registry Office and it depends on factors such as location and floor space.

*** Imposta Sostitutiva
The “substitutive mortgage tax” was introduced by with the DpR no. 601 in 1973, for mortgages and loans over 18 months in duration



NOTARY between € 2.000/5.000 + VAT
(it depends on the purchasing price and the transaction)
NOTARY FEE IN CASE OF MORTGAGE to be paid an extra around € 1.800/2.000 + VAT
REAL ESTATE AGENCY 3% + VAT on the agreed
property price
TRANSLATOR between € 400/500 + VAT
(charged to the Buyer)
- € 200 as Registry Tax
- 0,5 % tax of the deposit paid
- stamps of € 16 every 100 lines of the contract (to be registered minimum 2 copies)
- stamps of € 2 or € 16 (it depends) on every attachment of the contract
(if required)
usually the fee is around 2% + VAT
on the property price
(if required)
between € 500/800 + VAT

15 things to know when you buy in Italy

  • Buying a property in Italy is very easy: there are no restrictions forforeign nationals to buy a second home there!
  • To buy a property in Italy and to open the Bank Account, we need theItalian tax code (the so called Codice Fiscale). Doing it is easy and free of charge: it takes just few minutes!
  • We can organize for you, after the purchase, all the utilities’ automatic payments like electricity, gas, water and rubbish tax. 
  • An accountant assists our clients for all that concerns the Property Tax IMU. This tax has to be paid twice a year (one installment in June and one in December) and it’s calculated based on the Cadastralvalue of the property.
  • If you are buying a brand-new property, please consider that in Italy kitchens and glass showers are never supplied by the Builder.
  • Builders, in order to cover major damages, must guarantee theproperty with a ten-year special insurance due by law.
  • If you can’t be present the day of the Notary contract, you can involve a Lawyer or someone you trust, signing a power of attorney at theclosest Italian Consulate of your country (or, if you are still in Italy, youcan do it with an Italian Notary).
  • Italian banks recognize to international clients the 60-70% of the value of the property you want to buy.
  • Closing in advance your mortgage is possible, without any penalty.
  • For non-residents, capital gain tax is 26% if the house is sold within 5 years. So, if you bought a property for € 100.000 and sold it for 150.000, it means you will pay a tax of € 10.000. After 5 years, no more taxes are required.
  • Residents can skip this 26% tax just buying again another primary home within 12 months.
  • Real Estate fee, Notary, Renovation expenses can be deducted from the total amount, before calculating the final one to pay the Capital Gain Tax on.
  • Succession Rights in case of death are not due.
  • If you are facing a renovation project, be aware that some works can’t be done by yourself, due to the Italian Work Security Law. Also, consider that the construction rules in Italy are different from the other countries’ ones. The same goes for Technicians: don’t hire your sister in law’s cousin! He might not have the legal signature for projects in Italy and for Security on construction site.
  • The deposit (Caparra confirmatoria) that you pay to the Seller is regulated by the Article 1385 of the Italian Civil Code, which says: «[1] if upon the closing of a contract one party gives the other a sum of money or a certain quantity of fungible goods, to function as caparra, in case the obligations thereunder are fulfilled, the caparra must be returned to, or set off against the obligations of, the payor. [2] If the party who paid the caparra fails to perform her obligations, the other has the right to withdraw from the contract and keep the caparra; if the party who received the caparra fails to perform her obligations, the other party has the right to withdraw from the contract and demand twice as much the amount of the caparra. [3] However, if the party who is not in breach of contract prefers to demand the other party be ordered to perform, or the contract be terminated on account of default in performance, the compensation of the damages will follow the general rules of law».