Even in your own country it is often difficult to handle all the contractual and legal problems, implied in property renovation, and dealing with the many issues related to restoration or refurbishment in a foreign country can be intimidating if the owner is not familiar with the local laws and regulations and not quite articulate in the foreign language.

Many of the Italian properties that attract foreign buyers need restoring and renovating, and some could use re-building and refurbishing too. A great example are those old traditional Italian farmhouses that are neglected yet exceptionally enticing. Several of these were constructed in the 18th and 19th century but then were left to deteriorate when the residents decided to leave the countryside.

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The phrasing used in Italy for buildings that need restoring is either “restaurato parzialmente” or “rinnovato parzialmente” which indicates that only a portion of the building is suitable for residential use and the rest requires renovation or, in some cases, reconstruction.

Construction contracts with contractors, law and responsibility regulations to follow, and, most importantly, supplying and identifying dependable, experienced, and credible experts - such as designers, structural engineers, and construction workers  - are all hard-to-deal-with aspects of property renovation in Italy.

Understanding the rules and regulations of renovation, being able to estimate the costs involved, and relying on a team of experienced professionals is truly indispensable.

One should keep in mind that underestimating legal obligations is never a good idea. Compliance with existing laws, and making sure that all refurbishment and reconstruction of one’s property adheres with legal obligations, is essential: real estate investors who take up renovations without the necessary approvals and in violation of existing rules may be liable to prosecution.

Having dependable local and legal consultants to count on not only streamlines and accelerates the renovation process, but it also, perhaps more importantly, ensures meeting all legal requirements correctly and on time, which is critical.

The first and most important, if not the most complicated, problem to discuss is determining the legal status of the property in order to determine whether the property already possesses the necessary renovation authorization papers or not, and whether these papers must be acquired. It is the responsibility of the property owner to obtain building and restoration permits from the local authority if they have not already done so.

Getting the contractual portion of the renovation deal worked is another challenging aspect to bear in mind. In Italy, construction contracts with a local supplier are governed by the existing Italian Regulation (more specifically, Civil Code Articles 1655 to 1677) as refers to debts, insurance, and potential damage.

Construction agreements are defined in Article 1655 of the Italian Civil Code, which is titled "notion," and claims precisely: "The construction agreement is the contract by which a party assumes, with the organization of the necessary means and with management at its own risk, the completion of a work or service for a fee". 

Renovation is to be done in a workman-like manner, which means that it should be executed with the assistance of professionals and technical experts. As a result, the contractor has a responsibility to identify any imperfections or faults present in the construction project which might obstruct or negatively impact the building work and inform the client as soon as possible.

In the case of private property renovations, the ordained construction company responsible for the renovation is required to sign two main insurance and liability policies.

These are the specifics:

  • Provisional, definitive surety
  • Posthumous, ten-year policy

One of the primary reasons that these insurance responsibilities are compulsory is that they've been intended to cover financial areas, such as ensuring guarantors to individuals and entities, and provide protection for the numerous risks which may arise as a result of construction project activities or the consequences of construction.

Construction companies' insurance policies must include ten-year posthumous coverage on their buildings for damages to the site and to third parties. Indeed, the builder is required by law to comply with this requirement in public contracts worth more than the amount specified in art. Under Article 35 of Legislative Decree 50/2016 (or where provided by the Client), or in agreements among individuals for the sale of property in the future (as defined by Law 210/04 and subsequent amendments), it is mandatory to remove ten-year posthumous insurance for the projects once they are completed. Furthermore, the requirement to establish a related liability insurance policy for a construction company which helps protect the organization in the event of loss or damage to third parties and/or individuals is included (and not only).

The priorities and desires of the proprietors, in terms of what the building should look like, which services it should have, and what it shall, in the future, be used for, are critical aspects of all renovation projects that must be accurately assessed and defined. Decisions about the appropriate architectural features of a building are heavily influenced by whether the building is intended to serve as a residence of an individual or family, or whether its final destination is to accommodate a commercial activity, such as a vacation property for international visitors. 

The thorough wide-ranging support a foreigner requires to successfully make it through the manifold processes of property renovation in Italy, without personally going through each step and phase, is provided by our team of experienced English-speaking designers, technicians, surveyors, and property developers. 

About our services

Experience, local insight and proficient knowledge about legal and technical aspects allow us to guarantee effortless procedures and effective execution throughout the whole process of renovation. Providing comprehensive legal support, expert know-how, and cutting-edge technological and architectural competency at the highest level, together with fluency in English, allow us to provide clear-cut advice on all aspects and provide resourceful onsite help and support around the clock.

Well-versed in cutting-edge modern technologies, we share innovative software tools with our customers, enabling them to personally "design" their dream home.

All of our engineers and architects are skilled and creative professionals capable of offering ingenious options appropriate for all types of properties, including private residences, vacation homes for international visitors, and foreign student residences.

Knowledgeable about the Italian bureaucratic system and daily requirements, we provide invaluable insider's guidance on the most cost-effective solutions for lowering utility bills, and insight on additional facilities such as electric power automatic stops, electronic keys, and other features that allow owners to manage their residences from afar.

With videos and regular updates in English, we keep our clients fully informed about the progress of the construction site.

Whenever possible, we offer our clients a variety of options by preparing a minimum of 3 different quotes (luxury/medium price/budget cost) in addition to fulfilling requirements of every client as well as their financial resources.

If you are just getting information and have not yet purchased a home in Italy, you may need to know that you require a tax ID number to buy property in Italy.
Read what a Codice Fiscale is and why you may need one here.

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