Castropignano: Too good to be true?

1 Euro Homes Up For Sale in Molise

aerial view of Castropignano, Molise in Italy

‘La Dolce Vita’ for 1 Euro; this is the spectacular dream being projected out of the little town of Castropignano situated in Molise, which is almost exactly half way between Rome and Naples. 

Live rent-free in a restored 1 Euro Home for a year in Sicily thanks to Airbnb.

In shops such as Poundland and 99p stores, you would likely find a tin of food and maybe occasionally an item of clothing. You would walk out with a smile on your face and a proud feeling as you are getting a great bargain for such a low price. The mayor of this town has taken this concept to another level and created his own version of ‘Pound Land’ with that ‘land’ being the land of Castropignano.

Prospective Buyers Should Talk to Mayor Nicola Scapillati

The seller of this once in a lifetime opportunity is the town’s mayor, Nicola Scapillati who is shouting from his own Italian rooftops about this amazing deal and his encouragement for people around the world to jump head first into what could be the best purchase of their lives.

Like everything in life, there is always a small print. Once a house is purchased, you have to put an immediate deposit of 2000 Euro which you will receive back once the house is renovated. As well as this, the renovation must be complete within 3 years. The mayor projects the cost of renovation to be around 30,000- 40,000 Euro but of course the cost comes down to self knowledge and how cost effectively you could reform the buildings.

Other stipulations which the mayor announced to embassies worldwide include; to support all expenses for the drafting of the deed of sale (notary, registration, transfer, etc.) and to begin work within two months from the date the building permit has been issued.

“It hurts me to see the beauty of our ancient historical centre scarred by crumbling houses, slowly decaying,”

Scapillati commented in an interview for CNN.

These are the first words muttered by the mayor which may suggest the whole scheme is indeed too good to be true. In fact the, around 100, houses that are being sold are in serious disrepair and without renovation these dilapidated buildings would likely crumble to the ground. This proves serious physical risk and harm to the buyers of the properties which seems to have been hidden behind the curtain of the amazing price of 1 Euro, which is music to most peoples ears. This is also clear to see in the town’s castle which has no roof after it was bombed during the war.

Castropignano History

The town is a small town that is situated 620 meters (2034 ft) above sea level in the Province of Campobasso. Due to its elevation, it is often referred to as the “Balcony Over The Biferno River Valley”. From the top, one could see a picturesque panoramic view of the surrounding towns and hillsides.

Castropignano is an ancient settlement of the Samnites who were an ancient group of people. They used these heightened places in the mountains as almost outposts to defeat the Romans. However, this did not happen as we know and the Romans conquered them all, leaving only ruins as their memory.

In the modern era, the town, like many others have suffered with the real problem of people leaving in search of a better, and more financially stable life. This is evident in the Castropignano’s statistics that show over 60 percent of the residents today are over 70. Even the mayor, whose family are from this town, happened to leave after the war like many others and further north in search of jobs. However, the Mayor made a U-turn and was and still is determined to “stop the decline in its tracks.”

Invest in the Revitalization of Rural Italy

In truth, the price of the houses that this town is selling will always be a bargain. Despite the fact that they are falling apart, the cost of renovation would not be an eye watering sum. For someone who is experienced in renovation, knows the town to some degree and is in search of a quiet and peaceful life, the deal is something that is very prestigious. It’s a project for someone who wants to invest in the revitalization of rural Italy. It’s a long-term investment in a lifestyle that may become extinct.

However, these ancient towns are exactly that; ancient. They are not built for cars; some are designed with the old rural architecture where the ground floor was meant for livestock. The actual process of renovation will be extremely tricky and will be no mean feat. The town itself is not bustling, intact it has only around 900 occupants. It really is down to what life you are searching for and how big of a risk you are willing to take.

Saying all that, sat on a starry night on the balcony of your newly renovated home with a glass of red wine in hand, the low sound of your neighbours having their dinner outside, watching the soft sun set; how could you ever say no? 

Read to Buy?

Contact Mayor Nicola Scapillati directly at

Via G. Marconi, 1 – 86010
Tel: 0039 0874.503132
Fax: 0039 0874.503522

All photos provided courtesy of Mayor Nicola Scapillati

Read more Real Estate articles in Live in Italy Magazine

Understanding Property Taxes in Italy

Find A Luxury Home In Venice

Maximillian Payne

Contributing Editor

I am a 20 year old student currently studying Journalism at the University of Portsmouth. My life goal and aim is that after I finish my degree, I will move abroad permanently to Italy, in particular Rome, and focus on travel journalism and sports journalism which are my two main passions. It is a very scary thing to think about moving abroad alone at a very young age but my deep passion and desire to live in Italy keeps me so motivated to execute my plans and live my very own ‘Dolce Vita’. Most of my hobbies have some link to Italy, none more so than my love for football as I am a very passionate supporter of club, S.S Lazio. In England, I am a season ticket holder at Chelsea where me and my family have a tradition of eating at the best Italian restaurant on the Kings Road in Chelsea called ‘Frantoio’. As well as this, I also am very intrigued and interested in the mafia and in particular the ‘Cosa Nostra’. I have many books on the detailing and history of it as well as every film. Unlike most people my age, my music taste is eclectic. I have a huge range of vinyl records as my favourite artists are Elvis, Bob Dylan, Paul Weller and people from those eras. Of course, I do like modern music too but not as much as the 70’s and 80’s! At this moment in time, I am trying to gain as much experience at writing as possible as well as making as many contacts in Italy before I move so I can have the best possible chance of it being a success.

    1. Hi Hussein, Thanks for your comment! Please see the link to the Mayor’s website at the end of the article for more information. We’ll try to get as many answers as possible too and keep our audience updated.

  1. The writer is a dreamer..too young and inexperienced to understand the difficulties and complexities of italian life and nasty useless..rapacious and vexatory bureaucracy..
    Good luck

    1. Thanks for your comment Alfio. Yes, Max is young and entitled to dream. However, we do understand that there are pitfalls and we hope that the foreigners who choose to make their lives in Italy, give back good things that help the economy grow and skills that are useful. Italy is a beautiful country and we wish all citizens the very best and a way forward!


  3. Hello I am interested in buying one of your properties can you tell me all requied things i have to do or i have to be to buy one?

    1. Hello Maria. If looking into 1 Euro Homes in Castropignano, the mayor’s contact information is at the bottom of the article. You need to go to him directly. We will soon be posting an interview with an Italian realtor who lives in the U.S. and is a consultant to people wishing to buy a home. You can also contact Gold Eagle Real Estate. Check for articles and links under the Real Estate tab on our home page. Thanks for reading the article and finding us! Be sure to subscribe for updates.

  4. Hello Maximillian,
    Thank you for your article on homes for sale in Castropignano. Your biography is inspiring and I hope you are close to realizing your dream of living in Italy. I write to you from Amman, Jordan. I’m half Palestinian half American with a fondness for language and travel adventures. I hope to visit Italy in summer 2022. All the best.

  5. Hello, I took a serious look at your article, and of course it will be so amazing to own a house even an one bedroom house or or a tiny house in Italy! I love Italy! Specially Florence and Tuscany! The land speaks to my heart ! I do not know Sicily but from what I am reading the land is filled of history and that really tickles my spirit ! But renovations of a very old house can be colossal… I will need proper advises from a reliable contractor and how much the.entire project will really cost!! Before even started ! I am interested and 1 dollars to start well why not at least to view the place before making any decision . why not! I am willing to come in Juin and visite the village and see what this project is all about. No ones know what the future will hold! Kindly would you be able to send more information on how to come to the village? People who do not drive in Europe how will they find the place? Train? We need some directions please.. it will be great as well to have a type of seminar or event to explain all the laws of the land before signing any contract ! I know as well there is a ferry going between Sicily and Malta! Which can be as well great for someone who would like to live in that village! Thank you for your article, and to make us dream…

  6. Good day.
    We are from South Africa and very interested. My husband is in construction. We are currently busy renovating a small house we bought in a small village in Croatia.
    We want to find out about residency after completing the project?
    And then also are there any English schools nearby. Else we will have to go for home schooling.
    Will I be allowed to work from there for the company I work for now in South Africa because that would be our only income.

    Awaiting your response in anticipation. .
    Kind regards


    1. Hello Giuliette! Thanks for reading this article and for posting a comment. We’ve found it difficult to reach the Mayor of Castropignano. We just posted an article 2 days ago about a trial offer to reside in Italy rent-free for one year. You can read it here: We have had questions about residency, but the lawyers who we’ve interviewed deal primarily with Americans in Italy. It would be good to investigate that from your end and know that purchasing a home does not guarantee residency. You still have to abide by the visa laws. In our February magazine, we are featuring a company (based in Italy) that helps people find homes on auction. Stay-tuned for that. Thanks again for your comment and all the best with your search.

  7. Hi There

    Wonder if anyone could introduce me to the right people.
    I am from South Africa and am interested in investing in property or 1 Euro homes to improve them and possibly look to eventually live in Italy and relocate my Manufacturing business of water sports.
    If anyone could help I would appreciate it.
    Thank you

    Kind regards
    Brendon Germaine

    1. Hello Brendon. Sorry for our delayed response. We wish to provide more information on 1 Euro Homes and continue to write updates as we find them. It’s not easy. In this article, we provide some links to the Comune’s.

      You can try reaching out to them. As for living and opening a business in Italy, it’s best to work with an attorney. Try looking into things yourself through the consulate first since they may have more insights and recommendations.

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