With dozens of towns in Italy selling old, crumbling dwellings for less than the cost of an espresso, picking the right location might be a tough call. But what if it were by the seaside and you could walk straight to the beach from the living room?
The city of Taranto in Puglia is placing a new lot of abandoned homes on the market for just €1 – a total of 50 apartments within nine multi-floor buildings. All of the dwellings, which are badly in need of a renovation, are located in the ancient walled district called Isola Madre – aka the ‘Mother Island’ – jutting out into the open sea. Many come with a panoramic view of Taranto’s gulf, popular for its delicious premium mussels and pristine beaches.
Taranto’s greatest selling point is its unique location. It is the only coastal place in Italy that has joined the €1 homes club. The other towns and villages taking part in the scheme tend to be in rural hilly or mountainous spots quite far from the coast.
Following the success of the first sale of old homes last year, the city hall was flooded with hundreds of requests and has decided to replicate the scheme, softening some of the rules.
Interested buyers must restyle the property within one year from the purchase, but can ask for an extension if it is rightly justified. Taking up residency and actually moving in is no longer mandatory. They should also send along a draft restyle plan alongside a deposit guarantee of €1000 which will be returned once the works are completed. The sum required is the lowest across Italy, as other €1 home towns ask for a downpayment of between €2000 and €5000.
Castello Aragonese in Taranto © clodio / Getty Images
The apartments can be used as second homes or turned into B&Bs. Families with kids are encouraged to apply to breathe new life into the depopulating district, where barely 2,500 people now live compared to 40,000 a few decades ago.
The new lot of buildings are set in the most picturesque winding alleys, overlooking historical piazzas and stone portals. The sale coincides with the return of some international travelers to Italy. Local authorities are organizing guided tours of the properties, confident occasional visitors might be enticed to stay longer to take a peek and apply. Find information, photos, tours and applications here.
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The post Snag a seaside home in Italy from €1 – if you can renovate it
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