Buying and selling property in Italy: make sure you have seen these documents | Le Marche Properties and Accommodation |

Before you complete your property purchase you should make sure you have seen:

  • The Land Registry extract (Certificato di Destinazione Urbanistica CDU) which provides all the information on the land’s use, regulation (building restrictions) and structure
  • Planning permission: you must ensure that when buying off-plan from a developer, the development has approval from both the local Comune (town hall) and the regional government. It is also worth having a look at the Piano Urbanistico Comunale PUC (Urban Plan) which will state whether or not the plot you wish to buy has any building restrictions, is in a green zone or includes a public pathway or similar
  • The paid-up receipt for the previous owner’s annual property tax (IMU). It is also wise to make sure that there are no unpaid rates from previous years
  • The Catastal certificate giving the exact boundaries and square metres of your land
  • The licence of first occupancy (Certificato di Abitabilita’) which is issued by the town hall for new buildings or restructured ones and certifies that the property is habitable. You will need this document to connect to electricity and water companies. Developers cannot force you to complete without this licence
  • Receipt to prove all utility bills have been paid by the previous ownerAsk the property agent for information regarding any costs the owner has not paid. You should be aware that if you later find that there are such debts outstanding, as the new owner, you assume the debts for the current and previous year (two years in total). For this reason it is strongly advisable to ensure that you have a copy of an affirmation stating that the previous owner has no debts
  • A property survey: this is not obligatory but it is wise to get a chartered surveyor to check the property before you complete - If you are buying an off-plan property, confirm that the property has been certified as finished by a registered architect (Dichiarazione di fine lavori, Certificato di Agibilita’) - If you are buying off-plan, ensure that the developer/constructor has the necessary insurance to cover build defects
  • The private contract – this contract is not obligatory but is usually signed between the buyer and the seller before the public deed is granted. Usually in Italy a written agreement of purchase (compromesso) is done between the seller and buyer. You should make sure that you fully understand the contract before you sign it and if you are not fluent in Italian you should get it translated
  • The Rogito Notarile (public deed) – it is important to check that there is an accurate description of the property in the deeds.