Tips and Topics In Italy Sardinia and Sicily


July 2009 You can now buy a second home for less than €100,000 in Italy

The August 09 edition of "Italy" magazine reports on a silver lining to the current economic crisis. Whereas not so long ago it was difficult to find a second home (unless it was remote or a wreck for under €100,000. However with vendors pricing property more competitively the magazine has sourced three delightful homes ranging from a two bedroom cottage 15 minutes from the beach at Scano di Montifeffo in Sardinia for €80,000 and a one bedroom townhouse in Gualdo Tadino, Umbria for €97,000 for further information see the August edition of Italy magazine page 69 £3.75.

April 2009 Italian Property Market Update

According to the April edition of Italy Magazine, a performance analysis of the Italian property market for the last 25 years shows that values have grown substantially in real terms. After years of boom prices are expected to fall slightly in 2009. However the marketfor "urban lofts" bucks the property slum and while average house prices start to decline, loft prices are good. Interest in lofts is highest in Milan.

Generally in 2008 property sale volumes saw a greater drop in Italian provinces than in the provincial capitals and in the north more than the south. Florence and Venice were the two best performing cities. The latest report of the Agenzia del Territorio (equivalent to the UK's Land Registry) shows that the credit crunch has had a moderate impact on Italy. Finally the roundup reports that "Italian mountain properties see a small decline... As the skiing season enjoys a good year in Italy, the market for mountain properties picks up momentum. Buyers will only be able to find marginally lower prices than in 2008

March 2009 Drink Drive laws in Italy Update

Italy Magazine's March 2009 edition reports that the new Codice della Strada (The Highway Code) has stated that if you drink more than three glasses of wine or more than one brandy you will not pass Police alcohol tests. Apart from having the driving license suspended up to a year, the vehicle can also be confiscated and sold by the state.

April 2008 Hamptons International opens office in Italy

Hamptons International, one of the UK’s premier international residential agencies and a subsidiary of Emaar Properties (DFM: EMAAR), has today announced the opening of its strategic European office in Rome, Italy. This launch underpins the company’s international expansion plan.

The Rome office will collaborate closely with developers to offer development consultancy and sales and marketing experience. The Hamptons International Italian team will initially focus on local sales, before marketing to Hamptons’ extensive global client base. Hamptons International has identified Italy as an economy with a similar home ownership ratio to the UK, at around 70%, and where there is excellent growth potential. Unlike many other established European markets, Italy is not saturated with new completions and by maintaining a balance between supply and demand, over-supply can be avoided.

Real-estate development expert Enrico Cristiani has been appointed head of country for Italy. Enrico and his team will establish the Hamptons brand across Italy, building on their extensive existing client relationships and growing a strong pipeline of development opportunities. Hamptons International has also opened an office in Saracusa, Sicily and plans to open further offices in Florence and Milan within the next 12 months

“The Italian market provides a broad range of property investment options. Tuscany is certainly still a favourite spot for foreign buyers, because of the beauty of the countryside and the proximity to unique cities such as Florence, Siena and Lucca. On the other hand, buyers from abroad are discovering the charm and culture of Sicily, Puglia and to some extent the Calabria region,” comments Enrico Cristiani, head of country – Italy, Hamptons International The opening of Hamptons International Italy forms part of the company’s strong expansion strategy. In addition to well-established branches in the UK, Dubai and Oman, Hamptons International is launching offices in countries such as Morocco, Russia and India, and marketing properties in some of the most exotic locations in the World including the Seychelles and Mauritius.

March 2008 Mediterranean building ban

Environment ministers of 14 countries have agreed in principle to ban the construction of commercial and residential developments within 100 metres of the Mediterranean coastline. The new Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) was ratified in Almería by the ministers.

The convention has agreed that along the 29,000 mile shoreline of the Mediterranean that no construction would be permitted within 100 metres of the coast in an effort to help protect the coastline from the damage caused by development and human contact.

Christina Narbona Spain’s minister for the environment and José Fernández Pérez, Spain’s environment ministry Director of coastal areas told a press conference that Albania, Algeria, Croatia, France, Greece, Israel, Italy, Malta, Montenegro, Morocco, Slovenia, Syria and Tunisia have all ratified the Barcelona Convention and that Bosnia, Cyprus, Egypt Lebanon, Libya and Turkey have not at this stage, however they are believed to be signing the agreement later in 2008.

August 2007 Fiat 500 Revival

On the 4th July 1957 the famous very small Fiat 500 was launched. This very popular car designed by Dante Glascosa can still be seen on the streets of Italy and the south of France and many cars are in perfect condition. A few years ago Fiat introduced a "Nuova 500", unfortunately the design was not too interesting so sales were no that hot either. Fiat have now announced the introduction of a new 500 that will look very similar to the original 1957 model. It will be be produced at Tichy in Poland and like the original will have three doors, will be 355 cm long, 165 cm wide and 149 cm high. There will be achoice of engines — 1.3 16 valve multijet turbodiesel giving 75 horsepower and two petrol driven engines — a 69 horsepower 1.2 8 valve and a 100 horsepower 1.4 16 valve.

May 2007 Research has found that London residential property is the most expensive in the world — It has now overtaken Monaco — Rome is in 10th place and Florence in 14th place and Milan in 18th place

A report by Knight Frank and Citi Private Bank has revealed that London has the most expensive residential properties in the world. The average cost in prime central London is £2,300 per square foot. More

April 2007 is pleased to announce that it has launched a car rental Excess comparative site

The site shows the Excess amounts charged by the major car rental companies, as well as the daily rates they charge to reduce the Excess.

The information was compiled during April 2007 by Insurance4carhire staff calling each car rental company's airport location at the international airport in the capital city of each country – more than 180 locations in total — and the costs are based on the daily cost of excess for a compact size car.

The survey was conducted in more than 30 countries across Europe, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, USA and Canada. The car rental companies surveyed are: Alamo, Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz and National More information

August 2006 — Aer Lingus will be charging for carrying luggage

The Irish airline Aer Lingus has followed Ryanair and FlyBe in annoucing that it will charge passengers extra for baggage it carries in the aircraft hold. This will be from the 17th January 2007. They will levy a fee 8.00 / £5.50 for each bag carried for short haul flights or half if it is booked on line in advance. This fee policy reflects the moves among some low cost airlines like Irish competitor Ryanair to apportion costs for optional services. The company has abolished complimentary catering on its European network. The policy will not affect British Airways passengers who are booked on "code share flights" (EI127 /BA329 for excample) that operated from London Heathrow to Dublin, Cork and Shannon. British Airways has negotiated for its passengers to be exempt from the charge.

March 2006 — jml Property Insurance can now offer Holiday home property insurance to many European countries.

jml property insurance has been acting as an agent introducing Landlord and Tenant insurance in the UK since 2002. As the company is heavily involved in self-catering holiday home rentals with, there have been numerous requests for property insurance for owner's holiday homes in mainland Europe as well as the UK. There are now more and more people buying holiday homes overseas and in the it makes sense to deal with a company that can provide a policy written in a language the owner can understand.

jmlcan now introduce owners in France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Italy, Ireland, Germany, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Sweden,Malta, Cyprus and the UK to a policy written in English and underwritten at Lloyds. The premiums are payable in £ sterling and the insurance is arranged via Andrew Copeland (Insurance Consultants) Ltd.

Andrew Copeland are based in London and are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority in the UK. This is very good news for the owner of that dream holiday home property who is not too fluent in French, Spanish or Portuguese who can now understand the full details of the policy in his or her native tongue.

Further details can be found by going to

January 2006 — Ryanair to offer online check-in and luggage fees.

Passengers travelling on the budget airline Ryanair are to be offered cheaper airfares and the option to check on in the Internet from March 16th 2006. They will also face charges of £5 / €7 for each item of luggage they check in. The company says that it could cut the number of airport queues for its flights by as much as half and will incentivise passengers to travel with only hand baggage.

Any bag that weighs more than 10kg will have to be checked in. There are also restrictions as to what can be carried on board. Ski boots will have to travel in the hold. Under the new system, any passenger travelling with hand luggage who has an EU passport will be able to check in at the company’s website up to three days before their flight.

Passengers will be asked to print up their own boarding card, complete with a pre-arranged barcode. Upon arrival at the airport they can go directly to the security check in, thus avoiding the check in desks. Passengers who also check in their luggage on line will be charged €3.50 for each bag on the flight and will still have to present their bags at the normal check in desks.

Ryanair has beaten easyJet in becoming the first no-frills airline to offer passengers the option of checking in on line and said it was something they were considering. Aer Lingus has confirmed that it also intends to introduce online check-in later this year, but has no plans to charge customers for each piece of luggage checked in.

January 2006 — Tunnel problems

Fifty thousand inhabitants of the Val di Susa near Turin have protested against the Government's intention to give the go-ahead to proposals for the TAV (Treni Alta Velocità — High Speed Trains) to link Lyon In France with Turin. The people living in Vale di Susa don't want the destruction of torism in the valley and they don't want to be exposed to the dust caused by the digging of the 50 km long tunnel through the Alps, particularly in rocks which notoriously contain uranium and asbestos.

The information provided here on the Tips and Topics in Ireland page is given in good faith and should not be relied on for accuracy

Holiday Home Property Insurance for France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Italy, Ireland, Germany, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Sweden, Malta, Cyprus, England, Scotland and Wales — visit our Holday Home Insurance section.

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Visiting the Tuscany Umbria Border Area of ItalyCLICK HERE

Florence in a day CLICK HERE

Private Residential Tenancies Board of IrelandCLICK HERE

Scily Travel Guide CLICK HERE

A Florence Hills TourCLICK HERE

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Accepting Payments in Euros can prove Expensive CLICK HERE


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