We’ve had lots of clients ask us about all the different bonuses that are currently available in Italy so thought it would be useful to address it. Fortunately, as an estate agency affiliated to FIAIP, the leading organisation for real estate in the country, we were able to access training and information on this topic and already have several projects in the pipeline. Hopefully this summary will answer some of your questions so that you can tap into this fantastic opportunity.
What is a Super bonus/ Eco bonus?
The bonus system is a government initiative created to boost the economy – construction and real estate – and to encourage homeowners to improve the energy efficiency and reduce seismic risk of their homes.
The scheme was started by the Italian government in 2020 and has been so successful that they are now extending it until December 2023.
Here’s the breakdown:
110% Super bonus – this is an umbrella title consisting of 2 parts
Energy Efficiency Bonus – The main focus of this is to improve your APE rating, (APE stands for Attestato di Prestazione Energetica i.e. energy performance certificate), by 2 categories so if your house is currently graded D for energy efficiency, you’d need to plan works that would increase it to grade B in order to qualify.
The Sisma Bonus – This funds work to improve the structural stability of properties to make them more resistant to earthquake damage.
In order to gain funding you need at least one ‘major’ (called ‘trainante’) project that meets the criteria and then it’s possible to add on some ‘minor’ projects (called ‘trainati’ ).
|Major Projects||Max funds available|
|Thermal Insulation – walls / roof (Eco)||€50,000 for a single property|
|Replacement of a heating system (Eco)||€30,000|
|Seismic work (Sisma)||€96,000|
|Examples of Minor Projects||Max funds available|
|Replacing windows, shutters & sunshades*||€54,545|
|Installation of Solar Panels||€48,000|
|Installation of Photovoltaic systems||€48,000|
|Charging dock for electric vehicles||€3,000|
|Accessibility improvement for people with disabilities||€96,000|
There are numerous other bonuses available that they may not fall under the ‘super’ umbrella, but they can work out to be more financially viable depending on your plans. Unlike the 110% Super bonus there is no maximum limit to the funds, just a percentage of the total cost and there’s option of receiving it over 10 years in tax credits, instead of 5 years as with the Super bonus (better for lower income groups) or, just like the Super bonus, selling it on to a bank, contractor or investment vehicle. Read on for further details on how the money is reimbursed.
- 90% bonus ‘Facciate’ – House facades
- 65% Ecobonus – Boilers and heating
- 50% – Roof repairs or replacement and windows
Do you have to be resident to qualify?
Initially it was thought that the resident status was a vital prerequisite to qualify for the bonuses, but this has now been overturned so now the scheme is available to non-residents and second homeowners.
Not all properties qualify – if you’re property falls into the cadastral categories A1; stately homes or A9; castles and palaces, you are not eligible.
How is the money given?
The bonus can either be reimbursed in the form of a tax credit over a 5 or 10 year period depending on the type of bonus or the tax credit can be ‘sold’ to a bank, business or even the Post Office, usually at a discount so check the terms carefully.
What’s the catch?
In the 110% Superbonus there there are caps on each category of funding so it’s not an endless supply of money. As such, if you are planning a large project, it might not cover everything. In this situation you might be better off applying for a different bonus.
Like many things here in this beautiful country, getting the funds is a complicated journey filled with layers of paperwork and bureaucracy. It will take longer than if you were to pay for things yourselves because of the extra preparation involved but it is doable, you just have to factor in the additional time and be patient. Very patient. Very, very patient!
Are there any risks?
These bonuses are considered as a tax break therefore the tax authority are the ones to be answered to. They have up to 8 years following completion to check that your project has been done correctly and if it hasn’t, they can ask for the money to be returned.
What has it meant for the property market?
Up until recently, unless you had a big budget for renovations, it was often cheaper to buy a property that had been restored but might have needed just a few changes rather than take on a huge project. With the bonuses now in place and the government now confirming that the scheme will be extended to the end of 2023 and simplified to make it more accessible, it is a great time to buy a ‘fixer upper’. Properties that were previously dismissed as being too costly a project to take on are now becoming sought after and the market is moving. It’s a good time to take on a project if you have the right support and advice to make use of the bonuses.
How is the work managed?
There are all sorts of professionals involved in these projects ranging from thermal engineers to geologists to ensure that everything is correctly done.
For the 110% Super bonus all prices are set by regional tariffs and are non-negotiable and all materials used must be CAM (criteri ambientali minimi) approved.
What to do if you are a homeowner interested in tapping into the bonuses
Don’t be put off by the bureaucracy, yes, it’s complicated but it is doable! Contact your local geometra for advice or come and have a chat with us if you are not sure where to start and would like us to manage the project.
What to do if you are looking to buy and want to make the most of the bonuses
If you’re local, pop in for a chat, if not, drop us a line and let us know what type of property you are looking for and we will hunt for some suitable options that could tap into the bonus schemes. Before purchase, we can arrange site visits with the relevant professionals so that you can find out which jobs could be covered and where to start. Check out our website for details of our property hunting services https://www.itcasa.it/en/servizi/la-tua-ricerca/ . We look forward to hearing from you. email@example.com
(Article written May 2021, please note that the bonus regulations may change)