COVID had important consequences on the Italian real estate market in 2020, but not all negatives!
There has been a contraction in prices and sales in the main cities such as Milan and Rome: the lock down, travel restrictions and the activation of school teaching at distance, reduced investor interest in buying small apartments that were particularly attractive until 2019, and often bought in multiple units, to be rented out to students.
The months of lockdown have led people to take awareness of the importance of having adequate living spaces, and at the same time discovering the possibility to be able to work remotely. This has generated an increase in requests for larger apartments for the mid-range, while for the high-end market there has been a significant increase (25-30% more) in purchase requests for independent villas in the countryside, both by Italian and international buyers.
Umbria, Tuscany and Le Marche remain the favourite and the most requested regions by those looking for a farmhouse or a country villa.
Regarding real estate agencies, on an operational level, there has been a strong demand by the buyers to receive walking through videos and virtual tours, new tools able to provide a more complete and immersive feeling of the properties, to compensate for the inability of buyers to make direct visits on site.
An important novelty was the fact that international buyers, especially Americans, have proceeded to purchase important villas like this one, bought remotely for 1,9 M Euros, without personally visiting them.
Most of recent properties sold were farm houses with swimming pool, vineyard and/or olive grove, with prices ranging from 800,000 to 2 million Euros, purchased as second homes but also to be rented on a weekly basis to tourists who consider this kind of solution optimal in terms of freedom and safety: two aspects extremely important during these times.