Imagine what it would be like to retire in Italy. Imagine being able to spend every springtime in Rome…or Venice…or how about Florence…can’t you just picture yourself meandering beside the Arno River on a perfect May evening, when all the terracotta roofs and ancient palaces are bathed in that special Florentine glow?
But you don’t have to spend all your time in Florence or any of the other great art cities to experience the magic of an Italian retirement. Italy’s landscapes are as gorgeous as they are diverse. Historic walled towns…timeless villages crowning dozens of little hilltops like tiaras…fields covered with bright yellow sunflowers. Gnarled olive groves and lemon, orange and almond trees, golden beaches and jewel-like Alpine lakes are found throughout the country.
Discover romantic, mysterious islands, smouldering Mount Etna or the glittering peaks of the snow-covered Alps and the Dolomites. The Italian lake district is admittedly well trodden, but what do you know about the islands of Sardinia and Sicily? Or of Le Marché, an exquisite region on the eastern coast that shares the same luscious Renaissance landscapes as Tuscany and Umbria, but where properties are much more sensibly priced? Or of Apulia in the far south, a languid land of olive trees fringed by the turquoise Adriatic Sea and noted for its curious dome-shaped trulli houses?
Wondering if you can afford to retire in this dreamy European destination? There are numerous options and benefits available to expats wishing to retire to Italy.
The elective residency visa is the type of visa generally used by foreigners who are retired and can collect income from a retirement or pension plan. To obtain an elective residency visa, you must apply in person to the specific Italian consulate that covers your jurisdiction before leaving home. To be eligible for this visa, you must provide, along with a few official forms, proof of financial means such as original financial statements from banks, investment/brokerage firms, Age Pension, etc., indicating current balances. Such balances cannot be derived from current employment or other work activities. In other words, you cannot finance your residence in Italy through work. You will also need to provide a rental agreement or deed for property in Italy, and proof of valid medical insurance.
Italy doesn’t have a retiree program. But it does have benefits that we think more than make up for that… stunning scenery, affordable real estate, some of the finest food in the world, enough culture and historical sites that would take a lifetime to experience…the list is endless.
As far as Italian healthcare is concerned, Italy ranks No. 2 on the World Health Organisation’s list of countries with quality health services, which is very important for many people considering a retirement in Italy (neighbouring France has the No. 1 spot). In contrast, Australia holds 32nd place.