Five Types of Home You Can Buy in Italy
Le Marche is known for its beautiful beaches, charming hilltop towns, renaissance buildings and exquisite countryside.
There are an abundance of properties for sale in the region, each appealing to a different type of house-hunter. Be it a country casa that offers a complete escape, a beachside villa for lazy summer days, or a medieval townhouse to live like a local, here are five of our favourite types of home you can buy in le Marche, Italy.
FARMHOUSE IN A FIELD
For many who have ever imagined living in Italy, the traditional stone brick farmhouse with plenty of land surrounded by luscious Italian countryside is top of the list. Perhaps some vineyards, and definitely a pergola to sit beneath and enjoy morning espresso or evening apertivo while taking in magnificent views, farmhouses can offer tranquility and the perfect place to retreat to.
The beauty of owning a farmhouse in Le Marche is that you are never usually too far away from a small town or even the sea. Medieval hilltop towns are dotted all over the Marchese landscape which means that essential supplies and local life are never more than a short drive or walk away.
Plenty of these farmhouses have fallen to ruin and can therefore be priced attractively. But remember, the bigger the square meterage, the more you will need to spend on renovations.
The pricing of homes in Le Marche can vary greatly, some owners who have renovated only want to recover their costs, while others want a large profit. The price of course also depends on the size and location of the property, and we have seen farmhouses in need of renovation available from €150,000, rising from there for fully completed homes.
The hilltop towns in Le Marche usually blend modern buildings with medieval. Generally the outskirts of these towns have houses from the 1970’s to recent day, while the centro storici (historic centres) are well preserved and lined with terraced townhouses with colourful window shutters and terracotta roofs.
Located within an old city wall, townhouses can be up to four or five storeys high, their vaulted basements sometimes converted into a garage, cantina or shop. Narrow cobbled streets weave around the centro storico and many are accessible by car or vespa.
Townhouses usually have at least one balcony, and occasionally you may be lucky enough to see one for sale that has its own private garden.
The layouts of these properties can sometimes be confusing, with rooms overlapping with the property next door. A good tip is to look at the window shutters before going inside the property, the house will have matching shutters, whereas next doors may be a different style or colour.
Living in the historic centre enables you to be a part of a more traditional Italian way of life and will usually be able to walk to your nearest local amenities. We live in a townhouse and are able to walk to the bakery, greengrocer, chemist, bank, bar, weekly market and piazza.
As these historic towns are usually quite small, we have gotten to know local people very quickly, which means that you get to learn the language much faster! Their elevated position also ensures fantastic views with stunning sunrises and sets.
Prices tend to begin from around €20,000 and rises, depending on the amount of restoration needed and the size of the property.
Le Marche has miles of beautiful coastline, 26 blue flag beaches and family – friendly swimming with an impressive sea barrier made from rocks. Owning a home that faces the sea or in one of the coastal towns could be a great investment. Summers are not saturated with tourists so we never get the feeling of a lack of space and there is usually plenty of room for everyone at the beach. Homes by the sea increase in price the closer you get, so you will get less space for your budget.
Modern one or two bedroom apartments can start at €150,000 and rise from there, and old townhouses are also available in beachfront towns such as Grottammare, where a recent restoration project that we viewed was €200,000.
VILLA WITH POOL
Whether it’s a rustic farmhouse, or a more modern villa, owning a home with land and a pool appeals to a large number of foreign buyers who realise their dream of living in Italy every year.
A restored four bedroomed villa with a pool can begin at around €400,000, whilst restoration projects are priced considerably lower.
As with any home in the countryside, a peaceful location offers plenty of benefits. If you are close enough to walk or take a short drive to a nearby town, then even better.
RUIN TO RESTORE
Le Marche has a huge amount of ruins available to buy at rock bottom prices, we have seen some for as little as €10,000. Current laws permit the footprint of the building to be extended by up to 20%, and planning permission is usually needed before carrying out any restoration work. This can be obtained through the local council, and you must enlist the services of a structural engineer or geometra to oversee the restoration. Some people also hire architects to design the home.
Total restoration projects will require rebuilding or strengthening, re wiring the home, new plumbing and heating system, and anti-seismic work. In our experience, a useful guideline to cost a complete restoration project is from €1,000 – €1,500 per square metre of the building, which also includes replastering and mid range flooring and fixtures.
This guideline is useful when negotiating with a seller, it is important to know how much you will need to spend to make the ruin habitable.
The beauty of buying a ruin is that you can create the home according to your own specifications.
D&G Design are home renovators based in Le Marche, Italy, restoring holiday and vacation homes. Follow their journey and projects on Facebook & Instagram.