By Andrea Romano
January 30, 2019

Packing your life up and moving to the Italian countryside is becoming more and more practical every day. Especially when you consider the benefits.

Rustic Italian towns in desperate need of a population boom have been trying several kinds of campaigns to appeal to young professionals living abroad to get them to move to these tiny hamlets. Some towns have opted to sell their abandoned homes on the cheap — some as low as one dollar — while others are actually opting to pay people to move there.

Now, we can add Locana, in the Italian Alps, to the list.

DeAgostini/Getty Images

According to CNN, Locana Mayor Giovanni Bruno Mattiet is willing to pay up to €9,000, or $10,200, over the course of three years, to families who are willing to move to his beautiful village near the borders of France and Switzerland. The only real catch is that the families must have at least one child and have a minimum annual income of €6,000,or $6,850.

The town, located in the region of Piedmont, boasted about 7,000 residents in the early 20th century, but has since shrunk to around 1,500, according to The Mirror. Each year, there are around 40 deaths versus 10 births, reported Thrillist.

In addition to the shrinking population, the town also has a number of shops, restaurants and bars that have closed down as a result. But Mattiet says that should actually be a selling point.

“There are dozens of closed shops, bars, restaurants and boutiques just waiting for new people to run them,” Mattiet told CNN. He added that the town is small, but has quite a bit of income due to it providing hydroelectric energy to the state.

Also in Piedmont, according to CNN, there is another town willing to pay you to move. The town of Borgomezzavalle, just a little north of Locana, is selling homes for $1, much like other towns in Italy.

But to sweeten the deal, it’s adding some incentive to residents who want to start a family. Alberto Preioni, mayor of Borgomezzavalle, told CNN that he is offering €1,000 ($1,140 USD) for each newborn in the town and a another €2,000 ($2,283 USD) for people starting a business.”

“We've got tons of money to invest but we need kids and youth,” Preioni told CNN. There is currently no added incentive to have babies in Locana, though having a child is part of their requirements.

For many, moving to Italy has been a fantasy. But thanks to these incredible offers, that fantasy might easily become a reality. 

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