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Italy - Apulia

Apulia is on the east coast of the country, forming the famous heel on Italy’s ‘boot’ and has Bari for its capital city. The area has a population of over 4 million people and is also known as Puglia. Many people left the area in the 60s and 70s in order to move further north, but the economics of the area improved and now people are choosing to move to the region. More than 1.5% of the population are expats.

The area has a typically Mediterranean climate, so for the most part is hot and dry. Rainfall during the summer months is rare and is normally only seen between October and March, but not usually in any great quantities.

Apulia is a popular area for those who are considering retirement. Parts of the area are fairly quiet and the climate appeals to those who come from colder countries. The range of properties available is ideal for those who are looking to downsize and the outdoor lifestyle will appeal to those who are more active.

There are areas of the region which are only just beginning to attract tourists in any quantity so these are ideal areas in which to start a tourism based business such as a small hotel or bar. The coastline also provides opportunities for those who want to start an activity based business such as water sports schools.

Apulia is one of the cheapest regions for property in southern Italy mainly due to the fact that demand for property is only just beginning. A ‘trullo’ is considered to be one of the better buys in the area, due to the fact that a good quality renovation adds a lot of value to the property and these are easily rented out as a holiday let if the plan is to use it as an investment property. This type of property can normally be bought for less than €30,000. The trullo is a type of building which is particular to this area of Italy. They can be used as housing or as a farm building in some areas. Some of them are hundreds of years old. In some areas developers have used the style to create new buildings for holiday lets. The area also has an abundance of villas and townhouses which are also available at a very low price, particularly if the property is in need of renovation.

Another option in the Apulia area is to buy a new build property. New developments are appearing in the region, particularly along the coast and these are being aimed at those looking to retire or purchase a second home. It is possible to buy a new build property at a very reasonable price, but house prices have been rising each year and are expected to continue.

The town of Otranto is a seaside town on the Adriatic coast and is becoming increasingly popular with tourists. The town has a long history and the architectural styles range from medieval to baroque. The centre of the town sits within the ancient city walls and is filled with souvenir shops, bars and restaurants. Properties in this area range from small houses to apartments and property prices are on a par with the regional average. The town is ideal for those who want a busy social life. The buildings along the waterfront are much newer developments, with holiday homes and apartments which are ideal for those who are looking to retire.

The East Coast of the region is home to numerous small seaside villages which are ideal for a quieter retirement, but also offer opportunities for those who want to open their own business. Some of these towns are just beginning to attract tourists and buying a property suitable for a small B&B should be fairly easy. The West Coast is much more geared up to tourists with many resorts and lots of hotels and hostels. There are also a number of resorts which are aimed at those looking for winter sun. Properties on the West Coast command a higher price than on the East Coast but demand is higher and there are many more modern properties than traditional houses.

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