Sardinia is trying to revamp some of its most remote villages and towns with a unique program whereby you can get paid to buy a house.
Yep, you read that right, there really is a way to move to Italy’s most fashionable island and get paid to do it.
However, as you can imagine, there are caveats.
Sardinia is the second-largest island in the Mediterranean but it has a bit of a population problem.
In essence, there aren’t enough residents and tourists in lesser-known spots to keep small villages alive.
Tourists inject tons of cash in jet set locations such as Porto Cervo in the summer, but they don’t go to the smaller towns and villages.
Meanwhile, residents are gradually moving towards the big cities, which means old buildings and homes in the villages are left to rot.
That’s where the government scheme comes into play.
Sardinia has set aside the equivalent of $45 million to cover the costs.
This is how it works.
Anybody who wants to apply for a government grant needs to buy a house first, and it must be in a town with fewer than 3,000 residents.
That’s the easy part because houses are usually cheap as heck, and some can be had for a symbolic fee of just one euro.
But that’s where it gets tricky.
After getting to keys to their €1 home, buyers need to invest at least $15,000 to renovate the home, and when that’s done, they need to apply for a permanent residence and live there full-time.
That way, they can register the Sardinia Islands as their official home, something that must be done within 18 months in order to receive a government grant.
After that, ‘all’ you have to do is apply for said grants, and the good news is they can be fairly substantial.
Also, this is not limited to Sardinia, there are other villages throughout Italy where you can buy a €1 home.
A small village in the Abruzzo region in southern Italy is offering grants of up to $52,000, which is mad when you think about it.
It all sounds great but perhaps the catch is you have to actually reside in the €1 home you buy.
And spending more than six months out of a year in a village with 3,000 souls isn’t for everyone.
Mind you, the tricky part is that in order to do this, buyers will have to deal with Italy’s sometime’s messy bureaucracy.
That too isn’t for everyone.