Real estate law

Renting in Rome: how to register a house contract


Renting house in Rome

Registering a rental contract in Rome may seem like a straightforward and quick process, but it conceals many pitfalls. A minor error could subject you to tedious and potentially harmful scrutiny, instantly putting you in the wrong. The procedure for registering a rental contract in Italy is relatively simple in itself, if not for the fact that it involves various legal aspects that require careful attention to every detail.

Types of contract in Italy

First and foremost, it is important to understand, according to Italian law, the types of contracts that can be entered into in Italy. There are four types of contracts:

  • Free market lease agreement
    • This is a long-term contract lasting for 4 years, renewable for another 4 years. The rental price is freely determined.
  • Concordance lease agreement
    • This is a contract with a duration of 3 years, with the possibility of renewal for another 2 years. Generally, the rent is lower than the market price. This type of contract allows the landlord to claim a tax deduction.
  • Transitory lease agreement
    • These are for short-term rentals. They last at least 1 month up to a maximum of 18 months. They are not renewable upon expiration.
  • Lease agreement for university students
    • These contracts are regulated by agreements with local cities and universities. They can last from 6 months to 3 years and have an automatic renewal for the same duration unless terminated. The rental price for student contracts is freely determined.

Each contract serves a specific purpose, depending on the tenant’s intentions. If the tenant intends to stay in the property for a long period of time, exploring the first option, the free market lease agreement, is advisable. On the other hand, if they are in Rome for a specific number of months for work purposes, a transitory lease agreement would be more suitable.

These considerations should be taken into account during negotiations to understand the tenant’s intentions, ensuring that the correct contract is drafted.

Rental apartments in Rome

What should be included in the contract?

Within any rental contract, several detailed pieces of information should be included as “guidelines” throughout the entire rental period. Naturally, the personal details of the property owner and tenant should be included, along with various property specifics and the monthly rent. However, it is advisable to add several additional elements:

  • Clause regarding the receipt of the Energy Performance Certificate.
  • Annual rental amount.
  • Condominium expenses.
  • Deposit amount
    • Which can vary from 1 to 3 months, depending on agreements with the landlord.
  • Terms and conditions for early termination of the contract.
    • Including specific timelines and procedures.
  • Terms and conditions for proper maintenance of the property.

Our advice is to ensure that all the above-mentioned elements are accurately and unmistakably written to avoid any misinterpretation, which could be detrimental to you.

Fiscal Code (Codice Fiscale): Why it is crucial to register a contract in Italy

If you want to rent a house in Rome, one of the most important documents you must have is the Fiscal Code, or Codice Fiscale. It is a unique 16-character number assigned to all Italian citizens and foreign residents in Italy. It allows you to access a wide range of essential services for a landlord in Italy, including:

  • Opening a VAT number to conduct independent business activities.
  • Receiving income from work and paying related taxes.
  • Opening a bank account.
  • Applying for a loan or mortgage.
  • Paying taxes and social security contributions.
  • Applying for a driver’s license.
  • Registering utility services such as electricity, gas, or telephone.

If you do not have a Codice Fiscale, you can easily request one by clicking here. We will be happy to provide it to you at a competitive price and within a very short time frame.

Renting a House in Italy Without Contract Problems

Once your tenant has signed the rental contract, you have 30 days to register it with the Italian Revenue Agency (Agenzia delle Entrate). This procedure is mandatory, and if an inspection reveals that the contract has not been registered or was registered after the 30-day deadline, the property owner may face a significant fine.

As mentioned before, the homeowner must notify the Revenue Agency about the contract. This can be done in two different ways. Firstly, the owner can physically visit the designated office to submit the communication. Alternatively, they can utilize the online portal provided by the Revenue Agency itself.

Registering a rental contract with the Agenzia delle Entrate

If we decide to personally go (or assign a third party) to register the rental contract, it is important to have all the necessary documents with us to ensure a successful registration.

The documents that will be required are:

  1. The original agreement in duplicate, signed by both parties involved.
  2. The RLI Form, fully and accurately completed.
  3. An F24 ELIDE Form, which will be used to pay the registration tax.
  4. The required revenue stamps for registration.

What is a revenue stamp?

A revenue stamp is a stamp that must be affixed and costs €32 for contracts less than four pages or 100 lines. If the contract exceeds this length, the cost increases to €64 for eight pages or 200 lines. The cost continues to increase in the same manner, with an additional €4 for every four additional pages or 100 lines.

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Find the nearest Revenue Agency office in Rome

In this map you can find every Revenue Agency office in the Roman area. Although for the best information you can get, please check out their official website. In this page you can choose the best office based on your needs:

  • Fiscal offices
  • Cadastral and cartographic services
  • Real estate advertising services

Registering a rental contract online

However, it is also possible to register the signed rental contract through the online application provided by the Italian Revenue Agency. The process is actually quite smooth and well-defined. To register a rental contract online, you need to use the software called “Contratti di locazione e affitti di immobili (RLI)” (Rental and Real Estate Leases). This software can be downloaded from the official website of the Agenzia delle Entrate (Revenue Agency), and it is completely free. However, if you are unsure about downloading software or concerned about your computer’s safety, you can opt for the Web mode and proceed with the online registration of the rental contract through your preferred browser, without installing any new software.

Nevertheless, the required documents must be uploaded in digital format, and they are the same as listed in the previous paragraph.

Rental house in Rome

How much does it cost to register a rental contract?

Registering a rental contract requires the payment of the registration tax for the lease agreement. This amount is not fixed but is proportional to the rental value, known as the “Registration tax for the lease agreement“. The tax varies depending on the type of contract being signed. To summarize, the payment works as follows:

Standard Contract

  • Registration Tax:
    • 2% of the annual rent with a minimum of €67.
    • Paid by both parties (landlord and tenant) within 30 days of the annual contract expiration.
    • For renewals, the tax remains at 2%, regardless of the rent, with a minimum of €67.
  • Stamp Duty:
    • €16 for every 4 pages or 100 lines of the contract.
  • Example – A standard rental contract with an annual rent of €1,200 incurs the following taxes:
    • Registration Tax: €24 (2% of €1,200)
    • Stamp Duty: €48 (3 x €16)
    • Total: €72

Special Contracts (cedolare secca)

  • Registration Tax:
    • 2% of 70% of the annual rent (equivalent to 1.4% of the annual rent).
    • Paid entirely by the landlord.
  • StampDuty:
    • Same as the standard contract.
  • Notes:
    • The taxes must be paid via F24 to the Agenzia delle Entrate.
    • Lease contracts must be registered within 30 days of signing.
    • Failure to register may result in penalties.
  • Example – A special rental contract (cedolare secca) with an annual rent of €1,200 incurs the following taxes:
    • Registration Tax: €16.80 (1.4% of €1,200)
    • Stamp Duty: €48 (3 x €16)
    • Total: €64.80

Possible scenarios after registration

If you have successfully completed all the necessary procedures following the rental agreement, it is important to consider that there may be various situations that could lead to early termination of the contract. Let’s go through the most common ones together:

  • Sale of the property to third parties:
    • In this case, it is obligatory to first ask the tenant who is occupying the property if they are interested in purchasing it, due to the Right of First Refusal. If there is no interest expressed, you can proceed with the early termination of the contract and proceed with the sale.
  • Change in the intended use of the property.
  • Renovation:
    • The presence of a tenant may make it impossible to carry out necessary renovation work. Therefore, the landlord can request early termination of the rental contract.
  • The tenant does not continuously occupy the property:
    • This issue arises especially if it contradicts agreements made during negotiations, where it may not have been specifically stated that continuous occupancy of the property was not required.

Finally, it is important to emphasize that it is more difficult for a landlord to request early termination of a rental contract compared to a tenant. In fact, the tenant can terminate the rental contract at any time by simply sending a registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt to the landlord, with a notice period of at least 6 months (as per previous agreements made).

Also, remember that early termination does not come without cost; it entails the payment of a fee of €67 to be paid to the Revenue Agency.