Moving to Italy > Minturno >
An Expat Talks about Moving to
Jan 26, 2016
An expat in Italy shares some thoughts about moving to Minturno, Italy, including how they gradually moved there and the costs associated with the transition. Also includes some ideas for what to bring to Italy with you, and what to leave at home.
What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Name three things that you wish you had brought and three you wish you had left at home.
Wish we had brought: 4 foot level, zip lock freezer bags, Hersheys cocoa powder. We didn't really bring anything non-essential or without meaning.
Moving to Italy
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What advice would you give someone preparing to move to your area about the actual move, choosing a neighborhood and finding a home?
We moved over a 3 year period giving us time to adjust 2 weeks at a time. We brought only things meaningful (family items), clothes, some small furniture items and will continue bringing things such as art work each trip we return to/from US. Find a place where the people seem helpful and friendly. Very few speak English here, but we found some wonderful people from the beginning that welcomed us and helped convince us that this was home. You shouldn't feel completely comfortable - this is an adventure. That said, we found a small town in a semi- rural community much like we were use to in the US. We found beauty and the targets we had identified - railway, sea, mountains, nature preserves, archeology and great food.
What type of housing do you live in? Is this typical for most expats in your area?
Apartment, there is only one other expat couple in town and they followed us here.
How did you choose your neighborhood and find your home or apartment?
Searched the internet for months before arrival to become familiar with the area. Stumbled upon our purchase by accident at our first visit..
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Are your housing costs higher or lower than they were in your home country? What is the average cost of housing there?
Lower cost for initial purchase. Check the internet real estate sites. Cost is based on location and housing requirement just like anywhere. We downsized a bit in the process as part of a life plan.
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Looking for a commercialista
Buon giorno a tutti! I will be retiring in Italy in 2022. I am trying to organize my US retirement accounts now, but need advice from a commercialista as to which vehicle has greater or lesser impact from Italian taxes. This forum has such great advice and it’s been tremendously helpful, but I would like to have someone I can talk to one on one. Could someone recommend a commercialista in Florence or Arezzo? I hope to get there on vacation in October. Thank you in advance!
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What Happens When Shipping Household Goods After 6-months of Residency
I am in the process of doing some research regarding the shipping of personal items from NY to Italy. I've read that personal items can be shipped duty free within 6-months of residency, however, I've had residency for over two years. Does anyone know if I'd be charged taxes or other fees from Italy and/or what the anticipated fees would be? I am shipping small items - approximately 20 plastic bins (or comparable packaging) and a dresser. No other furniture.
I would also appreciate the name of shipping forwarders if anyone has one they used and liked.
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Beware UniCredit Banca
Until recently if I used a UniCredit ATM with my US based ATM/Debit card, I was assessed a surcharge — maybe €2. These surcharges are still relatively rare here in Italy. I don’t ordinarily use this ATM but I was a block away trying to complete a transaction and unexpectedly needed €200. For convenience sake I was ready to pay the surcharge. However, no surcharge was disclosed. Instead I was notified of “today’s exchange rate”. I never saw this before and was initially confused. Eager to get back to my pending commercial transaction, I accepted the disclosure only to realize that UniCredit exchanged my €200 to USD at a markup of 3%. That €200 withdrawal cost me €6 — much more than a surcharge of €2. I wasn’t given an option to decline their money conversion trick. It was take it of leave it. So, let’s hope this isn’t a trend — identifying people using foreign cards upon whom to foist very unfavorable exchange rates at ATMs that ordinarily offer good rates of exchange. My US bank reverses ATM surcharges, but this wasn’t a surcharge. The transaction was delivered to my US bank in USD after UniCredit pocketed €6. It wasn’t much to pay for the learning experience, but I will be vigilant going forward. An aside: EBay plays the same game. Opt out of these money conversions. Let your ATM or credit card issuer convert the currency to dollars. It is nearly always the best consumer rate available to consumers.
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