Relocating to Puglia
We are planning to sell one of our properties in London and with that finance our relocation to Puglia (possibly around Ostuni area).
We are looking to buy a property that needs some work done to it and above all that has at least 5000 sqm of land, where we can grow our own vegetables/fruit and hopefully have some olive trees to press our own olive oil.
We are planning to have some extra accommodation so we can rent it out and generate some sort of income.
Could anyone let me know what are the basic costs of living in Puglia?
Council tax/water/electricity, etc.
Any other information will be welcomed.
Hi, I'm an english speaking lawyer based in Ostuni. If you need any info or advice on Ostuni area and Puglia costs of living I would be glad to help you.
I’m not too sure how many of these I’ve read, including our own over and over again before posting it. It is almost exactly our original idea to do, apart from the renting, which we ditched almost immediately after finding so many counterproductive posts. BUT before I put you off, none of it stopped us going ahead and we have absolutely no regrets, even with almost everything, apart from the veg, being different.
I’ll leave it to others to jump in regards “doing a place up”.
You can press your own olives, but we know of no one here that does, they all take their olive to the mill (frantoio), its hard work from start to finish, but well worth it in our opinion, then again we have no olives, we simply help others. The oil we have as a result (circa 30l at the moment) is superb and we have never had such as it ever in the UK.
We have around 1ha of land, wanted 2ha to start with and oh boy do we wish we only had 5000sqm! Okay a lot of ours is a bit hilly and that makes it much more difficult to deal with. But we’ve dug out two veg plots roughly totalling 40sqm and have other fruit areas. These take us almost all of our time from April to say around September when the work is more harvesting. There is so much to say on this I could not really do it justice. So importantly; you need water, not as daft as it sounds, particularly that far south. You will need equipment rotorvator , strimmer and possibly a chainsaw and these all will need to be maintained. If you intend to leave the place to visit the UK, then you will need someone to water or have a watering system in place. All of these things are different problems to what they would have been in the UK….
Enough of the detail, I would suggest you read as many old posts about the things you want to do, things you come across when reading them and get a cheap book on buying and living in Italy. Then put these in order of your perceived importance and do so searches to get as much information as possible on them. Anything, or as an alternative, post them on here asking the questions.
We found it all a wonderful experience and can’t thank enough people of this and other forums that spent their time giving us the answers we asked for. However we still ended up doing a lot of things wrongly because we either did not want to listen to what people were trying to tell us OR simply because there was no way they could get over to us what was involved.
We took 2 years to buy here and first off rented for 6-7 months. Just wish we had actually rented longer, but were too enthusiastic to get buying…. A wonderful time ahead for you, wish you the best of luck in getting there…
This is a wonderful idea, its not that expensive in Puglia, you need really no heating in winter and no air conditioning insummer with a little wise thinking about getting some drafts during the nght from keeping windows and doors open for free air flow. We thought the Puglians were extremely helpful, friendly, and honest! Veg at the markets dirt cheap, fruit falls off the trees in mandarin oranges and the fresh caught fish is a song for what you pay in France or even Portugal. If we were younger its what we would have done. The costs and work to repair, renovate houses is not that expensive considering that you really have something, stone structure and tile work everywhere, when you are finished, something to hand on to your children! Workers are looking for honest work and very willing to do the jobs for you, happy to have the steady income foreigners bring to them. Plus that a whole new language and a nice laid back happy culture surrounding you. All the best for you and your place in sunny south Puglia. We lived near Lecce and traveled extensivey in the Sale area. Ostuni is very beautiful, nice choice!
I'm ilario, I'm italian and I live in Puglia. If you need help, you can contact me and I can suggest you some information to rent or buy an house in that area.
Let me show you other areas, for example Lecce, Otranto, Alberobello, Ostuni, Monopoli, Bari, Trani, Corato etc....
I'm Annamaria, a local guide in Puglia. I've helped several people coming from Uk as well as USA who want to relocate in Puglia.
I know very well your culture as I lived in London for 2 years and I've worked with English people for 8 years.
Of course I know very well my land, so I can help you with any questions, curiosities, dubts and so on and so forth, as well as with all your needs such us engineerings for structural works, gardners, cleaners, lawyers, to help you with all procedures for your relocation. The good point is that lots of them are English speakers and they are English people oriented.
Then, for any help you might have....Here I am!
Thanks so much everyone for your friendly responses!
We are still in our 30's so we are looking to still generate some income when we are there, I have Italian passport and speak Italian (both of my parents are Italian) but my partner is English and doesn't speak any Italian (yet).
What would you consider money wise enough we need per month to live there?
We are looking to have solar panels and our own water well to keep bills to the minimum.
What books do you recommend I should read about relocating to Italy?
In terms of renovation costs per square metre, what would be the minimum we need to pay?
We are planning our visit in April as soon as we can both get some time off work!
Thank you all again in advance!
Well, I reckon half your potential problems go out the window; language, culture adjustment, residency and healthcare. Okay, second guessing you don’t have a great experience of living in Italy? You will still have the benefit of being brought up “Italian”, hence the culture advantage (although I’m sure there will be one or two surprises) and that will stand you in very good stead in settling much quicker.
As to the cost of living there, I think people would really have to know how you are prepared to live! Again second guessing, from what you have said already you are prepared to live what I would see as a bit native (to me this is in a positive sense)? That being the case I would suggest you can in general live a lot cheaper here than in the UK. We spend a great deal of time still in the UK (months) and I would reckon our cost of living is at least 30% less in Italy. That said, it really does depend on your life style and a big “but” is that we are retired and have no financial worries based on our life style! I would not like to have to be earning money here and that could counter many savings as the cost of working is high e.g. tax at 23% …
Search “Cost of living in Italy” and you will get many a result, some of the first I looked at give amounts per month.
Regards renovation costs, I’m sure you will know they vary from area to area. From what I recall there is some kind of price guide produced on a regional basis, something like “Prezzi Informative Edili”. It might be useful as an indicative guide, but I would be searching in both English and Italian for “building cost guide Puglia” (perhaps “per square meter” as well) to try to establish true costs.
As for books on the subject, try a search on “buying in Italy” there are loads of them and most cover all aspects of living there and in the scheme of things are cheap!
Also you mentioned healthcare, so I would be entitled to free healthcare but not my partner? I thought all EU nationals would be entitled to free Italian healthcare (as they are in UK or Spain).
Yes, No and maybe :) Your residency wont be a problem. You will need to do your carta d'identita but that is true of everyone. If I have read correctly you have never contributed to the Italian system so to speak so you will not be entitled to 'free' healthcare I do not believe. Certainly my wife is not and she is Italian or we are doing something wrong....
Life saving emergency care will always be free to EU nationals. I always think of it as a traffic light system Red emergency care is free (heart attack etc),Yellow if you break an arm you may not pay upfront but you will pay something towards the cast or xrays etc. Green (stomach feeling a little sick) you pay for your medicine..
An example of yellow is I had a chest infection which the doctor wanted an x-ray for. I accidently wound up in a private clinic and paid €50 but I would of had to pay the ticket at a hospital anyway which I was told would of been around €35.
You say partner... Married? This will save you a lot of hurdles if you are. If you are not married they will have the right to reside providing they meet Italys criteria.. 6-8k income or assets a year and private health insurance. If they cant prove those residency may be an issue. I married an Italian so I got a my residency very easily.
Hope that helps.
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