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An Expat Talks about Living in Cingoli, Italy

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Cingoli

Describe how you "dreamed" expat life would be before you moved overseas. Please provide as much detail as possible.

I dreamed of living in Italy for many years, running my own B&B. I dreamed of sitting around a large table with many friends and neighbors, eating wonderful Italian dishes. I dreamed of exploring the countryside, other towns, even other countries nearby. I dreamed of living a simple life, of having my own garden where I grew my own vegetables. I dreamed of learning to cook Italian dishes, learning the Italian language, and settling into a different way of life.

How has your expat experience met the expectations you dreamed about before you moved abroad?

Almost everything I dreamed of came to fruition, with one important exception. I lived on the side of a mountain, overlooking the Le Marche valley all the way to the Adriatic Sea. I sat for hours at friends' dinner tables, talking endlessly. I explored much of the Le Marche region, and some to the south. I sang in the local choir, became part of the town of Cingoli (wonderful people!). I loved, loved, loved living in Italy, even when we had only one room with heat in the house, and cooked off a small heating element, before we renovated the house.

Expats living in Italy interested in expat health insurance should take a minute to get a quote from our trusted expat health insurance partner, CIGNA. Get a Quote

Expats living in Italy interested in expat health insurance should take a minute to get a quote from our trusted expat health insurance partner, CIGNA.

How has your expat experience NOT met the expectations you dreamed about before you moved abroad?

The only problem, and it was a big one, was our visas. We needed work visas to open a B&B, and the consulate in the U.S. told us it would be no problem to convert our visas into work visas. But when we had the renovation completed, we were not allowed to convert the visa. We were told to go back to the U.S. and start the visa process anew. We were not willing to spend another year just doing that, so we sold the property, got a good price and now we are in Mexico, just weeks from opening our B&B. (Love it here, too.) No one asked for my advice, but if they did I would tell them to just let life in a foreign country take you where it should. Let the little things, such as visa problems, or standing in line at government offices for hours, roll off your back. Complain to each other, get it out of your system, then let it go and realize what a wonderful experience you are having. Do not expect the same way of life you had in the U.S., which is supposed to be the point, no? "When in Rome..." certainly applies here. Stay open to how life is in other countries. You have to go to a laundromat? Oh, well. Think of the interesting people you will meet there - I know we did. Cannot find peanut butter in your local store? Try nutella. Stay open.

On the Italy Expat Forum

Join our Italy Forum and talk with other expats in Italy who can offer you insight and tips about living in Italy. Here are a few of the latest discussions on the Italy Expat Forum:

Italy expat forum topic
Dual Citizen & Residency or Not (19 replies)

I've been reading through old posts here and on the Americans Living in Italy FB group, trying to find out some information for when we have more time to spend at our holiday home. I apologize for the long question, but better to have it in one place and there is a wealth of experience with this group! We won't retire from teaching for about 7 years, but will have a home there now and hopefully dual citizenship by the time we retire. My sincere thanks for any clarification anyone can share about my questions!!! 1. DH is working on JS. Once acknowledged, I can begin the JM application. If we are both dual citizens, are we required to notify the comune of our presence if we are just staying in our own home for an extended vacation LESS than 183 days? The only thing I've read that would make registering as a resident important is for the purchase of a car. I'm not worried about the medical benefit right now. 2. As we would be registered in AIRE, we don't want to have to register as a resident at the comune, then unregister when we head back to the US if we are staying less than 183 days per year. I don't think it makes sense to go back and forth like with residency. It sounds like registering with the comune cancels your AIRE registration, and we would have to reregister again with AIRE upon our return to the US. 3. I have read that as citizens we can register our home as a primary home in Italy though AIRE, which would reduce our IMU. Anyone have experience with this? Can this be done if only one homeowner has citizenship, or do we need to wait until the JM process is complete (which I know can take up to 4 years)? 4. If we decided to stay longer, and haven't registered, how does the Italian government know of our presence if we aren't residents? We are NOT planning to cheat the system, but how would they track us? It seems from what I've read that whether or not we are registered residents, the 183 day rule would apply. 5. I know that if DH is not a registered resident, I would not be allowed to stay longer than 90 days until the JM process is complete and I have an Italian passport, correct? 6. If we decided to declare residency and stay longer than 183 days, we are subject to income tax on our teacher pensions as citizens of Italy, (but as foreign residents that particular pension is not taxable), our withdrawals from our 403b accounts, and a tax foreign bank accounts. I think we would need to ay a wealth tax on our home in California, but I'm unclear if there is a difference on this wealth tax if we are foreign residents or citizen residents. What is the tax rate for foreign held real estate? Are the property taxes paid on our home in California deductible from the wealth tax we would pay in Italy? We might sell, but the wealth tax on the value our home near San Francisco could be affect our decision to keep our home or not.

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Italy expat forum topic
Rental Contract (22 replies)

We are in the process of applying for elective residency and juggling all the balls in the air, so to speak seems a bit of a challenge. As I understand it one must first obtain a rental contract prior to the visit to the Italian consulate in the US. 1 - Are landlords/owners willing to give rental contracts contingent upon successfully obtaining an ER Visa. 2 - Did you pay the deposits, realtor fee and first months rent upon issuance of the contract but during this waiting period? I understand it can take up to 90 days for the VISA to be granted. and the hold your passport so if one were to rent prior to and pay first month rent, fees, deposits anticipating a successful granting of the VISA you could not travel to use the property while waiting, is that so? Can anyone explain in detail how they navigated this illogical process? Can one apply for Elective residency while in Italy?

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Italy expat forum topic
Buying a Car (3 replies)

What do you need to buy a car in Italy? I am an American driver planning to move to Italy within 24 months and would like to buy a car. I am also a Irish citizen Don't speak Italian (yet) What is my easiest path to buy a car in Italy? Thanks in advance!

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Comments about this Report

guest
Sep 11, 2012 03:00

What a wonderful story! And a very true insight!! Thanks for sharing! - btw: where in Mexico did you end up now? Greetings from Germany to you (just returned from Italy, Verona+ Suave)

guest
Feb 25, 2013 22:57

Great comments; thanks.

guest
Sep 18, 2015 22:53

Having lived in Italy off and on for many years, I definitely can commiserate with your ordeal. Italy doesn’t seem to care that we foreigners bring a lot of money into the country. And yeah, I’m sure all those African and Middle Eastern street vendors have all their visa paperwork tied up in a neat bow, i’s dotted and t’s crossed. Because THEY are the true businesspeople, right?

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