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Sicilian Town Offers Houses for One Euro

04, February 2015: For the many eager tourists who book in to one of the luxury villas in Sicily for a well-earned break, making a permanent move to this stunning Italian island is usually not on the radar. However, one proactive Sicilian town mayor has come up with a scheme to counteract declining population numbers by enticing new residents with the offer of a house for as little as one euro. 

Mayor of the inland town of Gangi, a picturesque hilltop town just an hour south of popular tourist resort Cefalu, made the offer in the hopes of making use of around 20 derelict houses, rather than see them deteriorate further – along with the population figures. 

However, the houses have a long way to go to match the standards of the typical luxury villas in Sicily offered to tourists – in fact, many of them are merely shells and require total restoration to become habitable. Naturally, there are also certain caveats that come with this almost-too-good-to-be-true offer. Prospective purchasers must pay all legal costs (around €6,000) along with a bond of around €5,000 in order to show good will in the intention to restore the property (this will be returned once the house is habitable). Buyers have five years to complete their restoration, which is estimated to cost in the region of a minimum of €35,000 per house. 

The initiative was originally launched a few years ago, but with little interest generated (due in part to a non-English speaking committee) the local council has now placed it in the hands of a Swedish property consultant, who lives on the island. Marie Wester claims to already have had significant interest from French, Russian, British and American clients – with two houses being sold recently to an Italian businessman. 

Representatives from top Italian accommodation specialists Cottages to Castles, say most of their clients are looking for short holiday stays in luxury villas in Sicily rather than to relocate permanently, however they agree that with the burgeoning popularity of this spectacular Italian destination, some may indeed find themselves tempted by the offer of a house for a euro. 

About Cottages to Castles: 

Cottages To Castles is a family-run company offering quality accommodation in privately-owned Italian villas. Their comprehensive catalogue encompasses all the main Italian locations, and their family team of experts will use their knowledge of Italy to find the perfect location for any client’s holiday. Visit Cottages to Castles at http://www.cottagestocastles.com/

For Media Contact:
Cottages to Castles
Tuscany House, 10 Tonbridge Road,
Maidstone, Kent, ME16 8RP, United Kingdom
+44 (0)1622 775217

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