This Picturesque Italian Village Is Selling Homes for €1

published Dec 4, 2020
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In another reason to pack your bags and head to Italy to start anew, another Italian village is selling homes for €1—a major incentive for those looking for a permanent way to quell their wanderlust by moving to a hilltop medieval village and settling down in a fixer upper.

Castropignano, a picturesque village located in the southern region of Molise near the coastline of the Adriatic Sea, is joining the famed One Euro House project, in which empty houses are put up for auction for super cheap (some as low as €1) in an effort to attract new residents to rural areas suffering from depopulation. The initiative aims to boost the economy and bring life back to these areas that have been struggling for years or even decades.

Officials in Castropignano shared a notice detailing the terms of their offer, announcing that they’re giving away abandoned homes in the village “free of charge” or for a nominal fee of €1. But unlike other similar programs, these homes won’t be given to the highest bidder. Instead, mayor Nicola Scapillati hopes to match buyers with the home that best suits their lifestyle needs, requirements, and desires.

“I welcome anyone who would like to purchase a new home here to email me directly with a detailed plan of how they intend to restyle and what they would like to do with the property—make it a home, B&B, store or artisan shop,” Scapillati told CNN, adding, “They should also list any requirements they may have, like access for people in wheelchairs. The village is tiny and cars can’t navigate the narrow alleys and steps.” It’s also quaint, with just one restaurant, a bar, a pharmacy, and a few B&Bs.

The village has around 100 abandoned buildings, and Scapillati is focused on long-term development and growth, as opposed to a short-lived viral scheme. “I don’t want my town invaded by a property stampede or to turn into the latest housing speculation deal,” he told CNN.

Still, it sounds like a buyer’s dream. “We’ve got nothing grand to offer except peacefulness, silence, pristine nature, oxygen-rich air, great views and fantastic food—ideal to detox from the daily stress,” Scapillati boasts.

Currently, the village is home to roughly 900 residents, down from 2,500 in the 1930s, with 60 percent of them over the age of 70. When many families moved to more bustling towns and cities after World War II, Castropignano saw decline for decades, and it’s now among the sleepiest villages around. “I want to stop the decline in its tracks, keep the village flame alive. I’m driven by passion and love for my hometown,” Scapillati said.

As with all these programs, there are stipulations for applicants to consider. Those candidates accepted will agree to a down payment of €2000 (or around $2,378), committing to a completed renovation within three years. The down payment will be returned upon completion of your reno. Scapillati estimates that the average renovation will cost around €30,000 to €40,000 (roughly $35,000 to $48,000) due to severe structural damage existing in many of the abandoned buildings.

If this sounds like the perfect opportunity for you, you can apply by emailing the mayor himself directly at, and you’ll be well on your way to achieving the idyllic Italian lifestyle of your wildest dreams.