The cost of living and property prices are high on the list of priorities for many people when choosing a location in which to live. Finding somewhere affordable is often the starting point for finding a home before people even consider other factors, such as schools, safety, work opportunities, and the general standard of living.
While there are many affordable places to live in various locations across the world, surprisingly, there are even places that will pay you to live there. Although many of these locations are in Italy, there are also schemes in several other European countries. Here are 10 places in Europe that pay you to live there.
1. Borgomezzavalle, Italy
First on the list of places that will pay you to live there in Europe is Borgomezzavelle in Italy. According to Evoke, Borgonmezzavalle is a small Alpine village close to the Swiss border in the north of Italy. By 2019, the population in the village had declined to only 320 people. To increase the population, the government offered to sell people empty houses for as little as one Euro.
After moving to the village, couples are entitled to a bonus of 1,000 Euros for every baby born. Those who start a business locally also qualify for a further 2,000 Euros.
2. Antikythera, Greece
Greece is another country with locations where people are paid to live, and one example is Antikythera. When the population dropped to only 20 people, new residents were offered a monthly grant of 500 Euros to live in the village for the first three years of their residency. The money for this scheme was provided by the Greek Orthodox Church. New residents were also given a plot of land and a house for free. Although Greek citizens are preferred, the village also accepts applicants from abroad.
3. Candela, Italy
Candela is an Italian village that needed to boost its population. To do so, they offer financial incentives to people to move to the area. The figures vary depending on numbers and circumstances. For example, singles receive 800 Euros, couples get 1,200 Euros, and families of four or five people are given grants of up to 2,000 Euros.
New residents can also receive tax credits on expenses, including waste charges. There are some conditions, including a commitment to live in the area for a set time and to earn a minimum salary of 7,500 Euros.
4. Ponga, Spain
If your dream destination is Spain, then you should consider moving to Ponga, as this location has an incentive scheme to encourage new residents. Ponga is a small village in the northwest of Spain, and it is one of the most ancient settlements in the country, says Euro Travels.
Therefore, it will appeal to those who enjoy historical surroundings. The government wanted to revive the local economy and attract a younger generation to the village, so they offered to pay 3,000 Euros to couples willing to settle in the area. They then offered them a further allowance of 3,000 Eros for every baby born.
5. Molise, Italy
Molise is another of the places in Italy that will pay you to live there. This location boasts both a sprawling coastline and magnificent mountains. In recent years, Molise saw a dramatic fall in its population, so an incentive scheme was established to encourage people to live in the area. The government offered to pay new residents 24,000 Euros to live in one of the 106 underpopulated villages in this Italian region. However, those who take the incentive must commit to starting a small business.
6. Utrecht, Netherlands
The Dutch city of Utrecht began a rather unusual social experiment when they began paying people to live there and do absolutely nothing, says Euro Travels. Those who moved to the city to participate in the experiment were paid up to $1300 for a single adult to $1880 for a family unit.
7. Albinen, Switzerland
Albinen in Switzerland has only 240 permanent residents, and the rest of the properties are used as vacation homes. Go Banking Rates says that the small village introduced an incentive scheme to increase the population. If someone buys or builds a new property in the area, they are given a grant of $26,648 per adult and $10,659 per child. However, residents must be under 45 and agree to live in Albinen for at least ten years.
8. Cammarata, Italy
Cammarata is another Italian town that is paying people to live there. The historic town was facing financial collapse, so the town's mayor Vincenzo Giambrone took drastic action to prevent this from happening.
He offered to give people free houses if they would move to the town. The ancient homes are in disrepair, so the new owners must undertake the properties' renovations themselves. Priorities are given to families who want to move to the area, as they need a younger population. If couples have a baby after moving into the town, they receive a further 1,000 Euro bonus.
9. Locana, Italy
A further Italian town that offers incentives to live in the town is Locana, says The Points Guy. Like many of the other locations on this list, the program began when the population dropped, and the local economy was in trouble. People were offered up to 9,000 Euros to settle in the area, and the payments were spread over three years. The two conditions of the program are that new residents must have at least one child and a minimum annual income of 6,000 Euros.
10. Sambuca, Sicily
Famous for its production of the alcoholic beverage of the same name, Sambuca is a village in Sicily. A falling population and the deterioration of properties led to an incentive program where people could buy a house in the village for just one Euro. However, the catch is that they must invest at least 15,000 Euros in renovating the property, and they have a maximum of three years to complete the renovations.
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Written by Dana Hanson
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