Despite my best efforts to dissuade folks who want to buy a villa in Tuscany, I still get emails asking me if I know about any interesting properties for sale. At this point, some of these readers are even starting to convince me that it’s an idea worth reconsidering.
So I did a little research just for fun. And if you’re going to indulge the fantasy, why not go big?
Submitted for your daydreaming pleasure are two versions of Rural Italian Bliss. The fully restored country estate, olive groves for days, cats running amok, an overflowing wine cellar–all the rustic luxury you can handle, with the requisite swimming pool gazing upon the undulant vineyards. Every box is checked in both cases. The only thing missing from this picture is the romantic expat with a passionate sense of adventure. That would be YOU! (Or me.)
Whatever project you’re currently dealing with at home or at work, put it aside for a moment and let’s pander to our wildest dreams.
In case you’re wondering, yes they both are currently for sale, and I know the listing agent personally. Furthermore, for U.S. citizens, there’s an added bonus that I’ll talk about later. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves just yet…
The Tuscan Dream, Version 1
Villa Number One is situated right in the heart of Tuscany. The Provincia di Pistoia, to be precise, close to Montecantini Terme, and less than 35 miles from everything. “Everything” in this case is Florence, Pisa, Lucca, and Viareggio (the beach).
This property has two independent apartments. One of them has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, a dining room and a living room with a sofa bed. It can easily accommodate up to 8 guests.
The smaller unit offers two bedrooms, one bathroom, a fully equipped kitchen, a dining room and a living room with fireplace.
There is also the aforementioned piscine perfetta atop a panoramic hill overlooking medieval castles in the near distance. Lots of furnishings and amenities are included, such as Satellite HDTV, Wi-Fi internet, indoor/outdoor music system, wash machine, safe, private parking lot, ping pong table, mountain bikes, wood fire oven, barbecue and more. (But do you really need “more?” I certainly don’t.)
Perhaps you’re beginning to appreciate some of the possibilities. This property has a lot of versatility, so if two families wanted to combine their resources, each family could have their own separate apartment while sharing the common areas.
OR, someone could live in one unit and rent out the other one out for a nice income stream, either year round or seasonally. Better still, just be selfish and claim the whole thing.
The Tuscan Dream, Version 2
And actually, the second property is already a working B&B. So there is an income stream currently in place, but with plenty of room for an owner/operator to live peacefully in this secluded fantasy land.
Speaking of Fantasy Land, this villa is located just outside the small town of Collodi. Never heard of Collodi? Sure you have; it’s the home of Pinocchio, the most famous bugiardo in history. And this area of Tuscany is also very conveniently located to all the great cities mentioned above.
However, we’re not here to go site-seeing; we’re here to relax in our own sprawling villa. The structure used to be an olive oil mill (frantoio), dating back to the 1,600’s. Don’t worry, it has recently been “eco-renovated” using local natural materials such as terracotta tiles, Matraia stones, and chestnut wood beams to preserve the historic character of the old mill.
There are 6 bedrooms and 7 baths for guests, plus an independent “owner’s apartment,” which has 3 bedrooms and 2 baths. Presently, pool and deck areas are being constructed, and will be ready in a few months.
But wait, the fantasy gets better! This place has its own little sports bar, complete with soccer memorabilia. You can’t get any more italiano than that!
So Who Wants to Buy a Villa in Tuscany?
OK, I imagine you’re on board with the dream “in theory,” but you probably want to know a little about the realities.
Well, there’s the price. Alas, the Tuscan Dream doesn’t come cheap. For the first Villa, the asking price is $1,492,000 USD. The second one (with the income stream already in place) is $1,649,000. But yes, like most everything in Italy, these too are negotiable.
*Notice that I quoted the prices in U.S. Dollars. That’s the “bonus” for any Americans who are entertaining the idea. I have a personal connection with a U.S. real estate agent working with the current owner who can execute the transaction in the United States using the Dollar instead of the Euro.
That means minimal dealings with the messy Italian bureaucracy, and just as importantly, making you more comfortable with the overall process. Plus, the Dollar has been quietly gaining on the Euro lately.
Visas and Other Annoying Documents
As far as visas and such, well, suffice to say that if you can afford one of these properties then you’ll have no trouble qualifying for the Elective Residency visa. That’s assuming that you’d even want to live there year-round. (Well, who wouldn’t? But practicalities and all…)
If you just want to enjoy the property for a few weeks every spring and fall, and then use it as an income stream the rest of the year, then no visas are required, just a valid passport.
You can (and should) still apply for a Permesso di Soggiorno, which would allow you, among other things, to opt-in to the state healthcare system.
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. If you’re truly interested in finding out more details and/or speaking with the real estate agent (an Italian currently living in the U.S.), then contact me by filling out the form below. I’ll pass along your information and you’ll be hearing from my friend very shorty.
And right after that, you’ll be hearing back from me in short order, inquiring as to the details for the upcoming Villa-warming party. I’ll bring the Prosecco! (Yes, I’m serious… I’m already inviting myself.)
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