Campania’s Teora has joined numerous Italian towns and villages in a fight with depopulation. To make newcomers stay, the council will contribute to their rent for two years
Italy is for sale. At least it appears so from the latest news as yet another town in the country has decided to attract new residents with a tempting financial incentive.
Teora, in the southern region of Campania, has announced that the council will pay any newcomer who moves to an abandoned house around €150 per month as a contribution to their rent over the course of two years. Alternatively, the town will give €5,000 to anyone who would buy the house.
Currently, a rental in Teora costs around €200 per month. 100-square-meter homes are on the market for just €30,000.
This way the town wants to prevent the newcomers from turning the estate into a cheap holiday house only and make them an actual resident.
“I don’t believe in selling empty houses for €1, that doesn’t incentivize people to stay in town,” Stefano Farina, the mayor of Teora, told CNN referring to the successful incentives that took place in other towns in Sicily or Italian Alps.
“They just come a few months a year as holidaymakers. That’s not the solution. But taking up residency and enrolling kids at the local school, that does breathe new life.”
Two babies are born while 20 elders die each year
Farina added that the local population is decreasing, and an influx of holiday homes would not be sufficient.
“Two babies are born [in Teora] each year versus 20 elders who die,” he explained.
“We’re down to barely 1,500 residents. I want to invert this negative trend. Children are our future, new families will be the building blocks of our shrinking community, so we encourage those with more kids to apply.”
Each town fights depopulation differently
Since the first Italian town decided to attract newcomers with a financial incentive, many other communities joined the trend with different offerings.
In January last year, a picturesque Alpine town of Locana offered €9,000 to almost anyone willing to become a new permanent resident.
After Zungoli near Naples and Sambuca in Sicily — which both offered abandoned houses to anyone for €1 — another Sicilian town of Cammarata has made a step even further. It’s giving out old buildings for free.
And most recently, Bisaccia — a small Italian town in the Campania region — has been encouraging whole families and groups of friends to buy multiple properties — for only €1 each.