Expat Forum For People Moving Overseas And Living Abroad banner
1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all, my wife and I are very new to this forum and we were hoping to get some help from the members of this community.

We are a young couple (age: 30) currently living in London, working for international companies. With both our roles going fully remote, we are seriously considering moving to Italy to enjoy the warmer climate, the great food, and the slower pace of living (London can be very intense). The dilemma we have is where do we start in terms of location?

This will be a big step for us as we don't have any friends / family living in Italy, however we absolutely love the country - we have been multiple times (visited from the very north of the country to the very south and the islands).

We would love to live somewhere in the lovely Italian countryside but ideally still be within reachable distance (around an hour or so, driving or train) of a bustling city which offers great restaurants, bars, theatre / cinema etc.

Our hobbies include trekking and hiking (we also have a dog so we love a good walk), anything related to wine (our holidays are always centred around wine, hence why we have been to italy so many time) and trying out different restaurants.... It feels like we want the best of both worlds - we want a countryside life, but without losing the full benefits that a city can offer us... Is that impossible?

We have looked at Milan so far but we're finding the houses too expensive for what you get in terms of space, facilities etc. It just doesn't compare to what we currently have in the outskirts of London.

Thank you all in advance, we are glued to our laptops waiting for your suggestions :)
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
51,989 Posts
Assuming that you are both British, the first consideration may be what visa you may be able to qualify for. You'll be considered to be working in whatever country you are physically located in while doing the work you're paid for, no matter where your employer is located or where or how you're being paid. There are a number of ways to do this, while still registering with and making the necessary payments for Italian social insurances and taxes, but first you need a visa that will permit you to work while living in Italy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
We are EU citizens so that is not an issue. Our employers have a presence in Italy so it's just a matter of moving country of residence with our employer :) thank you for your message and insight. Any suggestions on location?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,972 Posts
By remote I assume you need a net connection? How demanding? Many/Most small villages the best you'll often see is 20Mb/s DSL. The same in country homes. Most of the larger areas are up to at least 100Mb/s fibre to the curb. If you need higher than that you need to look at larger towns. If it matters for work you need to factor that into your house search.

Next thing with the ZTLs you can't really drive into the vast majority of cities. The best you can do is drive to a parking lot on the outskirts and then hopefully taking a train or bus.

In general that means you'll want some place with good transit links. The larger the town the better the transit.

Don't underestimate the hassle of getting into the centre if that's something you are interested in.

You've than got two types of places. Active towns . Prices are fairly similar all over. The other are the many dying towns here you'll often find many homes for sale if you're willing to renovate. But understand the issues with these dying towns. Limited work options mean most of the younger people are moving out. Some can see the population explode during the summer months and then become literal ghost towns during the winter. All that means you'll be driving for everything.

Italy is relatively narrow. That means most of the country is less than an hour drive from mountains or the sea. I don't think finding what you're looking for is impossible but understand you're buying for life. Those country homes aren't easy to resell.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
warmer climate, slower pace of life and great food - so why Milan? the climate is not great, cold and wet in the winter, hot and sticky in the summer, and certainly not a slow pace of life. Obviously everything depends what you want and how much you have to spend. And does your bustling city need to be a tourist destination like Florence or Rome, or do you want a more Italian city which will need you to learn/speak Italian. You have a huge choice, as Im sure you are aware. But if by bustling city you're looking for a place with 1 million plus population, then you very quickly get a short shortlist.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
400 Posts
You mention the expense of Milan, so have some concern/thoughts about money.... Sounds like you would have no problem affording it, but you may want to check out just how much tax you would be paying. This site here reckons you would pay an extra 7k on 150k income. It has been hinted already you could go almost anywhere in Italy for what you are after, but the weather can be anything but warm at times. We had 2m of snow on at least 2 occasions...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
I would suggest somewhere like Lucca. Here it is not too hot during the summer, but not freezing in the winter. You are also near the mountains of the Garfagnana for walks etc, and close to the coast.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
I have a wonderful house and property near Anghiari a five minute drive from town and I could barely buy a doghouse on the US West Coast for what it would sell for. Houses over 99% of the area of Italy are incredibly cheap compared to West Coast US, or indeed Greater London. Obviously if you want to live near Milan, Florence, Rome etc. that won't hold true but that's an incredibly small part of Italy to worry over, just avoid those few places. Shop around and you'll be very pleasantly surprised coming from London.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,972 Posts
Obviously if you want to live near Milan, Florence, Rome etc. that won't hold true
Depends on what you mean by "close". You'd be surprised how cheap homes are in metro Rome.

What's expensive in Rome are the AirBnB neighborhoods in the centre. The sort of rundown places the owner in normal times could rent out for €150+ a night. Similar places outside the centre might have a monthly long term rent of €300-400 .

The nice places in the centre are even more expensive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
In your position I'd probably do something slightly different, because I feel that if my existence was living in the countryside with an occasional visit to a big city an hour away then I'd not really "belong" anywhere, to any community on a day-to-day basis. Instead I'd probably live in or very near (i.e. within cycling distance of) a town or small city, like Lucca as another poster suggested. Italy has many gorgeous places like this.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I would suggest between Como and Chiasso then you would be able to work in Switzerland as a frontaliero ( a person crossing border daily).
The wages are double compared to Italy, the weather is good. There are loads of firms who would welcome anyone with English as mother tongue.
I live in the border town of Chiasso, I came here a long time ago and I now have 3 nationalities. Como is close to Lugano and summer it's warm here. It's also not far to travel to Liguria GENOA or to France.
If you'd like any more information I d be pleased to help you
Thank you so much! What a coincidence that you have suggested Como! We have actually decided to move there and will be moving there in 6 weeks time! :) Our only concern was that the weather might be too cold for us but as you said summer seems very nice and warm :) Being so close to Switzerland will be amazing for job opportunities in the future as well as for all the nice walks etc. Any tips you might have for us, we're all ears!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Assuming that you are both British, the first consideration may be what visa you may be able to qualify for. You'll be considered to be working in whatever country you are physically located in while doing the work you're paid for, no matter where your employer is located or where or how you're being paid. There are a number of ways to do this, while still registering with and making the necessary payments for Italian social insurances and taxes, but first you need a visa that will permit you to work while living in Italy.
Assuming that you are both British, the first consideration may be what visa you may be able to qualify for. You'll be considered to be working in whatever country you are physically located in while doing the work you're paid for, no matter where your employer is located or where or how you're being paid. There are a number of ways to do this, while still registering with and making the necessary payments for Italian social insurances and taxes, but first you need a visa that will permit you to work while living in Italy.

Hello,

I have just joined the forum and found your answer quite informative, so I hope you don't mind my reaching out.

My situation is similar to the one described above, however, the company I work for do not have a presence in Italy.

I am also an EU citizen, who has been living in London for the last 30 years.

My partner is Italian and we are now considering moving to Italy (Marche), hopefully, around August 2022.

I am wondering if you may be able to share with me some legalities around this move, or a good website to start the research.

Basically, if I were to stay on and work for my current employer (UK registered firm), what would this entail for the employer, and for me? If the employer was to make the necessary contributions in the UK, pay into my UK bank account, what would I have to do in Italy to ensure that I meet all the legal requirements?

I would like to have access to the health care system and all the rights, that the EU citizens are entitled to.

Could you direct me or share any information where to start this process?

Many thanks,

Mago


Assuming that you are both British, the first consideration may be what visa you may be able to qualify for. You'll be considered to be working in whatever country you are physically located in while doing the work you're paid for, no matter where your employer is located or where or how you're being paid. There are a number of ways to do this, while still registering with and making the necessary payments for Italian social insurances and taxes, but first you need a visa that will permit you to work while living in Italy.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
51,989 Posts
I can't really speak to the legalities of Italy, never having been there myself. But I can give you some generalities about where you may (or may not) run into problems or issues.

Basically, if I were to stay on and work for my current employer (UK registered firm), what would this entail for the employer, and for me? If the employer was to make the necessary contributions in the UK, pay into my UK bank account, what would I have to do in Italy to ensure that I meet all the legal requirements?
If you are going to do any sort of work from Italy then you are considered to be working in Italy and will need to satisfy all the Italian labor laws, including tax and social insurance registrations and payment.

Paying into the UK social insurance contributions basically does little or nothing for you (except maybe counting toward an eventual UK pension - though there are treaties between the UK and Italy that will come into play here anyhow). If you employer doesn't have an Italian presence (basically if there is no Italian payroll - through a branch or office) then you really want to avoid remaining on the UK payroll. There are options to work as a contractor for your UK employer - though the relationship will change so that you become more of a supplier of services than an employee. This can be handled in a couple different ways - either setting yourself up in Italy as a consultant or small business of some sort (means you'll pay your own taxes and social insurances to the Italian agencies based on billings to the UK "employer") or you may want to look into portage companies which act as a go-between in these sorts of arrangements (taking a fee, of course) and function as your Italian employer as far as taxes, social insurances and other costs of employment go.

Where you are paid or in what currency is pretty much irrelevant - though some Brits living in Europe are finding that the British banks are not keen on maintaining their customers once they move to the EU.

I would like to have access to the health care system and all the rights, that the EU citizens are entitled to.
You have the right to work in Italy, which carries the obligation to register with and contribute to the social insurance system there. So that includes health cover, pension cover and whatever else is available in Italy to other workers there.

Could you direct me or share any information where to start this process?
I'm sure some of the regulars here in the Italian forum can suggest online and other resources on Italy specifically. I can only recommend the EU portal here: Language selection | European Union Dig through it a bit and they have lots of information on cross border moves and rights and systems within the EU.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
I can't really speak to the legalities of Italy, never having been there myself. But I can give you some generalities about where you may (or may not) run into problems or issues.


If you are going to do any sort of work from Italy then you are considered to be working in Italy and will need to satisfy all the Italian labor laws, including tax and social insurance registrations and payment.

Paying into the UK social insurance contributions basically does little or nothing for you (except maybe counting toward an eventual UK pension - though there are treaties between the UK and Italy that will come into play here anyhow). If you employer doesn't have an Italian presence (basically if there is no Italian payroll - through a branch or office) then you really want to avoid remaining on the UK payroll. There are options to work as a contractor for your UK employer - though the relationship will change so that you become more of a supplier of services than an employee. This can be handled in a couple different ways - either setting yourself up in Italy as a consultant or small business of some sort (means you'll pay your own taxes and social insurances to the Italian agencies based on billings to the UK "employer") or you may want to look into portage companies which act as a go-between in these sorts of arrangements (taking a fee, of course) and function as your Italian employer as far as taxes, social insurances and other costs of employment go.

Where you are paid or in what currency is pretty much irrelevant - though some Brits living in Europe are finding that the British banks are not keen on maintaining their customers once they move to the EU.


You have the right to work in Italy, which carries the obligation to register with and contribute to the social insurance system there. So that includes health cover, pension cover and whatever else is available in Italy to other workers there.


I'm sure some of the regulars here in the Italian forum can suggest online and other resources on Italy specifically. I can only recommend the EU portal here: Language selection | European Union Dig through it a bit and they have lots of information on cross border moves and rights and systems within the EU.
Thank you so very much. You have been very helpful and certainly gave me a very valuable information.

I am yet to have a conversation with my boss so it would be good to go prepared, and with options.


Thanks again and my very best,

Malgosia
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,972 Posts
The EU has websites laying out your rights in the various EU countries.

If by partner meaning spouse life is easier. Italians get free access to health care and have no hoops to jump. So do their families.

If not married you'd need either an Italian work contract meeting the income threshold (I think 6K a year not exactly high) or savings. With a work contract you'd get automatic access to health care. Without a work contract you'd have to buy into the system.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
The EU has websites laying out your rights in the various EU countries.

If by partner meaning spouse life is easier. Italians get free access to health care and have no hoops to jump. So do their families.

If not married you'd need either an Italian work contract meeting the income threshold (I think 6K a year not exactly high) or savings. With a work contract you'd get automatic access to health care. Without a work contract you'd have to buy into the system.
Hi Nick,

Many thanks for your input.
So, if I understand this correctly, and summarising the information I have already received from Bevdeforges - if I were to be based/live in Italy but work remotely for the UK based and registered company without any presence on the Italian market, the most sensible way would be to set-up a consultancy business and outsource my services to my current employer.


I would also then have to make the necessary payments for Italian social insurances and taxes, but the company I would essentially “consult” for, wouldn’t have to pay any contributions in the UK, correct?

Unless, paying towards the pension?

Anything helpful that you or any member can add, will be highly appreciated.

Best,

Malgosia
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,972 Posts
What you're suggesting IMHO isn't a long term plan. Sooner or later one of the governments is going to crack down on it.

If you're working for one company or mainly for one company you're an employee. Governments around the world (not to mention the courts) know this.

It's not just the government. Think about the Uber/driver lawsuit in the UK. In the future you could decide that you want the same benefits of other employees and demand the company provide them.

If you're employer is willing you can try.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
What you're suggesting IMHO isn't a long term plan. Sooner or later one of the governments is going to crack down on it.

If you're working for one company or mainly for one company you're an employee. Governments around the world (not to mention the courts) know this.

It's not just the government. Think about the Uber/driver lawsuit in the UK. In the future you could decide that you want the same benefits of other employees and demand the company provide them.

If you're employer is willing you can try.
Hi Nick,

Sorry, I definitely don’t want to risk anything so all I was saying is, whether setting up on my own in Italy, paying taxes and contributions there, would be the easiest/legal way to still work for the same company, here in the UK.
Forgive me, perhaps I am not following.
Thanks,
M.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
51,989 Posts
NickZ raises a very good point about setting yourself up as a "contractor" in order to continue working remotely for your UK employer. Many countries will get "nervous" about your business if you are working exclusively for a single "customer" - there are also issues of "control" to be considered since as a contractor you are supposed to exercise your right to control your own work environment, hours and other specifics (including taking on other customers).

One big thing to remember is that as a vendor, you'll be paying full taxes and social insurances out of whatever you are billing your UK customer. Working in the UK, the employer picks up at least part of these charges (I assume) so you'll need to be careful in negotiating your billing rate to include enough to cover your charges and expenses of working independently. Besides taxes, there are office supplies (or other supplies unique to your line of work) plus utilities (particularly phone and/or Internet) necessary to do the work you do. It is possible to bill the supplies and other expenses through to your client/customer but the taxes are all on you and may take quite a bite out of your revenues.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,972 Posts
The simplest way for you is for the company to set you up . The simplest way for them is the hard part.

I think I'd try and find any information on the new digital nomad rules Italy allegedly put out either this year or late last year. I haven't paid attention but there was some mention.

If I have time I'll try finding something.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top