The €1 house scheme is still going strong in Italy with new villages signing up all the time. The latest is Troina, a medieval Sicilian village where the local government could help you with the costs of renovating your €1 home.
It's hard not to be swayed by the offer of a €1 home in a quaint Italian village. But these homes usually come with a mountain of added expenses. The entry point is €1 and the costs rack up pretty quickly after they're sold to the highest bidders who are able to commit to renovating the dilapidated properties. Troina in Sicily, however, is attempting to make the process a little less costly. It's so keen to attract new residents that the local government is willing to help buyers with renovation costs once they settle in the underpopulated village.
Troina, like many in the €1 scheme, is under demographic pressure as people leave for big cities. Particularly in its medieval center as families move to more modern houses in the region. Now Mayor Sebastiano Fabio Venezia is attempting to revive the village's fortunes by attracting new residents and restoring it to its former glory.
Troina was once the Norman capital of Sicily, and in 2019 it was officially named as one of the most beautiful villages in Italy. It's noted for its openness and inclusivity, after recently launching an LGBTQ tourism campaign that promotes new forms of hospitality without discrimination. It's also a great place for outdoor enthusiasts as it's located in Nebrodi: Sicily’s largest national park and an area of outstanding natural beauty with forests, lakes, orange groves and views of Mount Etna.
It's no surprise that potential buyers are already eyeing up property in the area. "In recent months there have been many requests for the purchase of properties in our historic center from all over the world," Venezia said in a statement, explaining that people have traveled from the US, England, Germany, the Netherlands, Argentina, Peru and more, with the intention of buying a house in Troina.
"Therefore, we have decided to develop a project that allows us to recover the many abandoned buildings, repopulating the ancient uninhabited neighborhoods and, at the same time, offering a possibility of refreshment to the economy and local workers, who will be involved in the works," he added.
As the village prepares an auction of abandoned properties, Venezia has set up an online agency, HouseTroina, to help buyers with the move. Around 30 houses are due to go on auction for €1 by the end of January, with another 100 in the pipeline. Buyers must pay a €5000 refundable deposit, and commit to starting renovation work within two years.
Speaking to CNN Travel, Venezie said the council could offer payments of up to €25,000 (€15,000 for renovation and €10,000 for energy efficiency work) to help new homeowners with the project. And new residents won't have to pay property and city service taxes for three years.
If you don't have the means to commit to a major renovation project, Troina is also selling fully renovated properties with discounts of up to €8000. For more information and to view the properties on offer, see here.
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