Real Estate Agents in Italy: Non-Legal Professionals

Important Factors to Consider Before Signing a Preliminary Contract with Real Estate Agents in Italy

Picture yourself gazing at the breathtaking Italian property you’ve always yearned for. As you hold a pen in your hand, ready to sign the preliminary contract in front of you, it’s crucial to exercise caution. Regardless of who prepared the contract, take the time to carefully consider its contents. You deserve a moment of hesitation, particularly if it’s a boilerplate template provided by Italian real estate agents and not reviewed by your own legal advisor.

If any aspect appears unclear, it’s imperative to address it promptly. While the real estate agents may assure you that it adheres to standard terms and complies with the Italian civil code, it’s essential to question whether these general provisions adequately safeguard your specific interests and needs.

Did you know that several Italian civil code articles are only applicable if parties do not agree otherwise?

From experience, I can tell you that no two property transactions are alike. So, you should be extremely cautious about using a standard template, which does not cover any specific issues relating to your personal case, property or situation.

I have frequently encountered deeply concerned buyers who, unwittingly, became legally obligated after signing one of these generic and inflexible preliminary contract documents.

Instead of simply signing the contract, it is worth considering alternative approaches. For instance, you can contemplate making the deposit payment conditional upon property searches and compliance checks. Similarly, if you require a mortgage, you can make the deposit payment contingent on obtaining mortgage approval, which can often take longer than anticipated. Additionally, it is crucial to highlight that signing a preliminary contract typically involves an immediate broker fee payment to your real estate agent. However, you can choose to defer the agent’s commission payment until the transaction reaches its finalization. If any or all of these conditions bear relevance to your situation, make sure to include them in your preliminary contract.

It is essential to remember that real estate agents, despite their experience and affiliation with a recognized professional body, do not possess the legal expertise necessary to provide comprehensive guidance. To address this, it is advisable to engage an independent attorney of your choosing, who can offer valuable insights, suggest appropriate clauses to minimize your exposure, and provide a thorough understanding of potential options and risks. By choosing an attorney without conflicts of interest, you can safeguard your interests and receive personalized, informed advice that caters to your specific needs.

Real Estate Agents lack legal expertise for comprehensive contract amendments

Real Estate Agents lack the legal expertise to offer guidance on the legal ramifications of excluding specific clauses from the preliminary contract. Relying solely on a boilerplate form, commonly used with fillable blanks, is not sufficient to ensure your utmost protection in approximately 95% of Italian property purchases.


Exercise caution before signing any preliminary contract in Italy. Consider the uniqueness of your property transaction and the limitations of standardized templates. Are your specific needs adequately addressed? Seek clarity if anything is unclear. Generic contracts have left many buyers legally bound and concerned. Explore alternative approaches like conditional deposit payments and deferring agent commissions. Remember, real estate agents lack the legal expertise for comprehensive contract amendments. Engage an independent attorney to protect your interests. We welcome your insights and experiences in navigating the Italian property market. Share your thoughts with us on this topic.

Related Posts

Habitability Certificate: Safety & Compliance for Italian Property

Habitability Certificate: Safety & Compliance for Italian Property

When it comes to buying or selling a property in Italy, there are essential documents that need to be in order. One important document for property owners is the Habitability Certificate. This certificate is a legal requirement and ensures that a property meets...

Italian Property Records: Why Keeping Up-to-Date Matters

Italian Property Records: Why Keeping Up-to-Date Matters

When your personal details change, such as through marriage, divorce, it's important to update Italian property records. This ensures that your property deeds match your current personal information and prevent any issues down the line. In this article, I discuss how...

Realtor Commission Fees and Payment Schedules in Italy

Realtor Commission Fees and Payment Schedules in Italy

When planning to purchase a property in Italy, it is essential to understand realtor commission fees and payment schedules. Working with a licensed realtor is usually the first step in the property search, and they have the responsibility to facilitate the transaction...