Sardinia Property For Sale
Lying to the west of the Italian mainland, and at the heart of the Mediterranean, the magnificent island of Sardinia is a true gem in which to buy Sardinia property for sale. The island forms an autonomous region of Italy, and is the second largest of the Mediterranean islands, second in area only to Sicily. Sardinia property for sale offers an opportunity to buy into the rich history and culture, beautiful landscapes and relaxed way of life of this truly awe-inspiring island.
Sardinia property for sale can be found amid a great variety of scenery. Coastal Sardinia property for sale can be found nestled against dramatic rocky coastlines, where lonely headlands and rocky outcrops teem with birdlife, or in ancient coastal villages on the shores of spectacular bays that have been used by boats for millennia. Further inland, Sardinia property for sale can be found against a spectacular backdrop of mountains, the highest of which is Punta La Marmora, which stands majestically overlooking the island at 1,834m tall. Flowing serenely from the mountain ranges are a number of major rivers, the longest of which is the Tirso. Some of these rivers have been dammed, providing a truly ecologically sound method of supplying fresh water and electricity to the island, as well as a beautiful lakeside setting for some Sardinia property for sale. The only natural freshwater lake in Sardinia is Lado Di Baratz, but the island does boast some of the most picturesque shallow, saltwater lagoons and pools in the Mediterranean.
The climate of Sardinia is typical of the area, with long, dry summers and a staggering average of 300 days of sunshine per year. However, this sun-drenched island is rarely unbearably warm thanks to the cooling Mistral winds that sweep in from the sea. These winds have also led to the rich trading history of the island, which still today make Sardinia a haven for would-be sailors and yachters.
Broadly speaking, the island can be subdivided into two main parts, and very different Sardinia property for sale can be found in each. The mountainous interior contains the true heart of the island, where the Sardinian people long resisted the conquerors and settlers that came from across the sea, instead keeping true to their own culture, traditions and language. Today the interior is more sparsely populated than the coastal regions, with green pastures, vineyards and nature parks set against the backdrop of the mountains. Conversely the coastal regions were often raided and invaded by a succession of peoples - some of whom settled, bringing their own way of life to the island. Arguably most successfully were the Romans, who colonised the coasts and founded great towns, the remains of which can still be seen today. As the power of the Roman Empire waned and the coastal cities became vulnerable to attack, the native people, again, preserved their way of life by moving inland, leaving the coastal towns all but deserted. In fact, it was not until the development of tourism on the island that the seaside cities again thrived, and today, Sardinia property for sale that is found by the sea is usually at the heart of a modern and cosmopolitan area that is much more recognisably Italian, yet still with the relaxed way of life so synonymous with the Mediterranean culture.
Historically, as part of a defensive strategy against the raiders, Sardinia was divided into four kingdoms, which were, until 2005, when the island was further subdivided into eight regions, the basis of the four governing provinces. Today each of the four ancient kingdoms still has a distinct identity, and beautiful Sardinia property for sale can be found in each. Cagliari is situated to the south of the island, with the largest city, of the same name, situated on the Gulf of Angels. The city is a busy, vibrant area, with historic Roman and Phoenician origins. The oldest part of the town, Castello, is still nestled within early medieval walls, and is dominated by the cathedral, dating from 1254. While the area’s festivals often have their origins in the long distant past, Cagliari also boasts many sporting events, ranging from motor races, with top F1 drivers among the competitors, and motor boating, to the Women’s World Volleyball Championships on the beautiful Poetto Beach, which is thought to be one of the best on the island. Nuoro is situated to the east of Sardinia, and is considered to be the cultural heart of the island. The town itself contains many museums and historic monuments, and the traditional celebrations truly show the Sardinian culture at its best. The area surrounding the town is largely wild and untouched and teeming with wildlife. Sardinia property for sale in this area serves as an excellent base for nature lovers, or for those that prefer a quieter haven, yet close to all the facilities of a modern town. Oristana, to the west, is the smallest of the old provinces, with the medieval town of the same name at its heart. Although not directly on the coast, the Torre Grande beach is nearby, and some of the island’s best resorts are located near this stunning and famous beach. Finally, to the north is Sassari, which is Sardinia’s second largest city and boasts some spectacular historic churches and monuments, as well as numerous art galleries. The area itself boasts 32 km of coastline, and coastal Sardinia property for sale can both be found near dramatic cliffs or alongside stunning beaches such as Platamona, Fiume Santo, Argentiera, or Porto Ferro.
Modern Sardinia is truly a place apart, with its own culture and traditions borne of a long history of isolation from the mainland. With the costs of transportation to the mainland, Sardinia strives to be as self sufficient as possible, with sheep and cattle grazing the pastures producing the famed Sardinian goats cheeses, and vineyards thriving in the sunny climate to produce the island’s world famous wines. The island even produces a surplus of electricity from the eco-friendly hydroelectric dams. Of course, the island’s natural beauty and Mediterranean climate result in tourism being very important to the Sardinian economy. Any Sardinia property for sale has great, almost year round, letting potential, and therefore Sardinia property for sale is not just suitable as a main or second home, but also an investment opportunity.
Sardinia property for sale is easily accessed from the UK and Europe, with the island boasting three international airports. Residents of the island benefit from special sales on tickets, ensuring low-cost and hassle-free transport to and from the island. In addition, ferries sail regularly to Italy, Spain and France, as well as to the smaller neighbouring islands. Though without motorways, the Sardinian road network is extensive and well maintained, and two railway companies ensure high-speed transportation throughout the island.
Guide to the Italian Buying Process
1. Making the Offer to Purchase (Offerta)
Once you have found the property you wish to purchase you will start the process by making a formal offer to the vendor, the estate agent will act on your behalf and put forward the offer, a deposit will be made available, generally around (10,000 - 20,000 EUR). Once the vendor has accepted the offer it will be formalised in writing to the vendor in both English and Italian. If this is accepted the deposit (Caparra Confirmatoria) will be paid to the vendor. This will form a legally binding contract. Neither party may withdraw at this point, the sale can be forced by either party or a claim for damages can be made. If the purchaser withdraws their deposit will be lost, if the vendor withdraws the purchaser can claim twice the deposit in compensation.
2. Signing the Preliminary Contract (Compromesso or Contratto preliminare)
The next step will take place between 1 and 3 months after the offer has been accepted, this is a formal agreement between the vendor and purchaser to sell and buy the property, this agreement is the Preliminary Contract and will contain the conditions and terms of the sale. It is important at this stage that you have a full understanding of all the details contained in the contract. We would strongly recommend that you appoint a Notary who is fluent in English. This document will include the purchase price, a detailed description of the property including completion date and will cover any obligations placed upon the buyer and the vendor. All information relating to the property including any planning permissions for the property and the cadastral details (a public record, survey, or map of the value, extent, and ownership of land as a basis of taxation). Once the Preliminary Contract (Contratto preliminare) has been signed a further deposit (Caparra Confirmatoria) will be paid, this will generally be 10% - 20% of the purchase price. There will also be an estate agents Commission Fee (Provvigione) which will need to be paid at this point.
3. Signing the Final Deed of Sale (Rogito or Atto Notarile)
The purchaser must have a bank account in order to make the purchase on completion. The signing of the final deed of sale which will authorise the transfer of the property must be overseen by a Notary (Notaio). The buyer will select and hire the Notary, but they are members of an independent body of public/professionals who will draft the purchase deed, they will oversee the passing of the title legally from the vendor to the purchaser. The Notary will also verify the legality of the documentation and registration with the Conservatoria dei Registri Immobiliari and the Local Land Register.
4. Formalities to be observed after Completion
Foreign buyers should obtain a certified copy of the Purchase Deed (Rogito), which the Notary will have lodged with the authorities. Generally this will be available to collect around 2 – 3 weeks after completion. The Notary will also give you a form to complete for the the local authority (Questura) who will have been given formal notice of the purchase. Your Notary will help you to complete this form. You will need to contact the utilities companies to set up new contracts (power, water, telephone, gas etc.). If the property is a flat, the condominium manager (Amministratore del condominio) should be informed of change of ownership of the property.
Various taxes must be paid on purchases. Registration tax / stamp duty (Imposta di Registro) is calculated on the government’s valuation of the property (Valore catastale). This will vary according to whether the property is being purchased as a holiday home, or as your primary residence. For a holiday home stamp duty will be 10% of the valuation. If you are intending to use the property as your primary residence and apply for residency (Prima casa), providing this is done within 18 months of the property transfer then stamp duty will be reduced to 3% for an existing property and 4% for a new build. This will be paid to the Notary on completion of the purchase.
Land registration, mortgage and cadastral taxes also need to be paid to the Notary on completion. These are one-off payments and are around €168 each.
Once the property has been purchased further taxes must be paid. There is a local council tax ICI/IMU property tax (Imposta Comunale sugli Immobili) of 0.4% to 0.9% of the property’s cadastral value. The rate for this is calculated annually by the council and paid bi-annually in June and December. This rate will be reduced if the property is the primary residence (Prima Casa).
If you are not resident in Italy you will have to declare any income gained from activities in Italy to the Italian Tax authorities. This income will also have to be declared in your country of residence, you will need a double taxation agreement to mitigate against paying twice. This declaration will apply to any income you might obtain from letting a property in Italy. Some expenses incurred on the property may be off-set against the income you derive from letting out the property. This can include management expenses, local taxes, repairs etc.
There is one tax which applies only to holiday homes, there will be a 20% Capital Gain on the difference between the buying price and the selling price if the property is sold prior to 5 years ownership.
IMPORTANT - Disclaimer :
All information provided is believed to be current and provided free of charge. No liability can be accepted for the reliability of the information and statements made as this is obtained from 3rd parties. We always recommend you take legal advice from a fully qualified Lawyer or Notary before buying a property overseas.
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