May a foreign resident obtain a mortgage from an Italian Bank in the process of buying a property in Italy?
What is the procedure? What documents are needed to be submitted?
The answer is YES! Non-Italian residents are legally entitled to obtain mortgages to buy a property in Italy.
However, due to the economic crisis and the new Anti-Money Laundering Regulation, over the past few years Italian Banks had made their mortgage-policy stricter especially when dealing with non-Italian residents. The reasons of this policy can be found in a) the personal responsibility of Bank Directors that must verify the source of the money that is used to buy the property (concerning the documents to provide the Bank with, see below) and b) properties are not more considered as sufficient warranty in case the buyer stops paying the mortgage installments (given the difficulty and the costs for enforcing the payment abroad Italy).
Nevertheless, there are still few Italian Banks willing to concede mortgages to non residents; this is one of the reasons why it is advisable to appoint a local Italian Law Firm that can assist the foreign buyer in this procedure.
A&B Law Firm has a strong business relationship with many Italian Banks with whom we are assisting foreign clients for many years so far.
First of all, it is worth to specify that an Italian mortgage can be granted not just in euro but also in a different currency (such as American Dollars or Pounds).
The process to obtain a mortgage involves several costs, namely:
- Mortgage application fees;
- Surveyor fees (when applying for a mortgage to buy a property, the bank appoints a surveyor in order to make an Evaluation Report to give the property a value on the basis of which the mortgage will be granted);
- Mortgage taxes;
- Insurance and translation fees if required.
The chances to obtain a mortgage are conditioned upon several parameters, such as:
- The amount of the sum requested as loan; Banks usually grant no more than 60/70% of the purchase price according to the Evaluation Report drafted by the surveyor appointed (see above);
- Applicant nationality;
- Financial status of the applicant; on this regard, it should be noted that Italian Banks require to know whether the applicant is capable (under a financial point of view) of sustaining the loan. This is the reason why it is usually requested a copy of the applicant’s last Tax Declaration (which must be translated in Italian and legalized or through Apostille or by the Italian Consulate of the Country of residency of the applicant)
A&B Law Firm will be able to suggest their clients the most suitable Bank where applying for obtaining the mortgage.
The timing to have an answer may vary from case to case. It usually takes few weeks. Once the application is approved, in case the mortgage has been requested for buying a specific property, the mortgage contract is signed in front of the Notary at the same time of the signing of the final deed for transferring the ownership of the property. An officer of the Bank usually attends the meeting and provides the seller with the check (which amounts to the sum granted as mortgage).
SUM UP OF THE DETAILS FOR OBTAINING A MORTGAGE IN ITALY
- Italian Banks usually concede a mortgage that can last from 5 up to 30 years;
- Italian Banks usually accept mortgage request for a sum amounting not less than 50,000 euro;
- A mortgage can not be grated for a sum that covers the 100% of the cost of the property (the maximum mortgage can cover the 70/80% of the purchase price);
- In case the applicant is more than 70 years, Italian Banks usually require for the signature of another (younger) applicant that will be jointly liable;
- Generally mortgages are granted for purchasing residential properties.
The contents of this page should not be taken as an authoritative statement of Italian law and practice. Neither the author nor the publisher are responsible for the results of actions taken on the basis of information contained in this summary, nor for any errors or omissions. This text is not intended to render legal, accounting or tax advice. Readers are encouraged to seek professional advice concerning specific matters before making any decision.