You don't speak the language. You don't understand the process. You don't know the laws. You don't have someone who has gone through it and can tell you what to do and what to avoid. And there is BIG MONEY at stake!
I have done literally years worth of research on purchasing properties not only in Italy, but also in Spain, Greece and other European countries. With my husband, I have successfully bought and renovated several properties in southern Italy.
In my experience as a real estate expert, here are just a few mistakes I have heard, read about or experienced myself in various different countries:
-When we were first looking at properties, we were approached with an offer to purchase a property for 120,000 Euros. 10 years later that property NEVER got built. Had we paid, we would be out 120,000 Euros.
(POSSIBLE LOSS 120,000 Euros)
-A person recently came to me with an offer to purchase for 10,000 Euros. The contract turned out to be a rental contract that guaranteed the BUYER ongoing fees! She would not have owned the property at all!
(POSSIBLE LOSS 10,000 + 1400 Euros per year + other possible fees as yet undetermined!)
-A property "renovated" by a friend of the agent that was completely messed up. That property is STILL on the market 10 years later for almost half of what the buyer paid to renovate it.
(POSSIBLE LOSS 100,000 Euros)
-A property in Spain where the buyer purchased and moved in, only to find that the builder had not gotten the required permits and the place was torn down. Of course, the builder was long gone.
(ACTUAL LOSS 325,000 Euros)
This is only a small sampling.
With this amount of money at stake, and no one to stop you from making expensive mistakes, who would be crazy enough to purchase their dream home in a foreign country?
AND WITHOUT SOMEONE WHO CAN GUIDE YOU THROUGH THIS PROCESS AND WARN YOU OF POTENTIAL PITFALLS, IT MIGHT JUST BE TOO MUCH TO CONFRONT.
Everyone has heard a horror story of someone purchasing a money pit or some other horrific mistake. They were once like you. They did not see it coming. THEY WERE NOT PREPARED!
There was a time I was in the same situation as you are now. I did not know where to begin, with too many opinions, too many know-it-alls who didn't know squat, and blind informational alleys that led nowhere.
I lost my confidence and started doubting myself. I desperately wanted this dream but didn't know how on earth to make it come true without risking way too much.