This Italian Town Is the Latest to Sell €1 Homes — and It's Close to Rome
Maenza, a town of about 3,000 residents in the Lepini hills south of the Italian capital, is selling dozens of abandoned abodes for prices starting at €1.
Maenza is known for its idyllic atmosphere, stone structures, olive trees, and sweeping sea vistas. It is anchored by a 13th-century castle and located near several seaside resorts and mountain ranges.
Maenza isn't the first Italian town to sell off homes at bargain prices, but unlike other the others, Maenza's mission isn't to build up its population. "This is not a dying city. People still inhabit the old district, but it needs a revamp, fresh oxygen," the town's mayor Claudio Sperduti told CNN.
Sperduti told CNN the town's goal is to save landmark properties that are in disrepair from both the toll of time and house flippers. And if you can't find something you like online, don't fret. Just email town officials who say they're eager to work with investors.
The town hopes to find new owners for around 100 properties. Owners won't have to take up residency in Maenza, making it an especially strong contender for anyone looking for a vacation home with easy access to Italy's best-connected international airport.
Sperduti told CNN he estimates some homes in Maenza could be back to livable condition with about €5,000 in renovations. These aren't the sprawling Italian villas you remember from movies like "Under the Tuscan Sun" and generally come in under 800 square feet, contributing to their lower-than-expected renovation costs.
Maenza is requiring buyers to commit to renovating their new properties within three years. Buyers also are required to make a €5,000 (about $5,840) deposit, which the local government promises to return once renovations are complete.
For anyone looking for a bargain hideaway in Italy, however, this may just be a priceless opportunity.