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PROPERTY

These are the most expensive places to rent a room in Italy

As new statistics show renting in Italy is getting more expensive, we look at how prices differ across the country.

These are the most expensive places to rent a room in Italy
Rental prices in Milan are famously high - and getting higher. Photo: DepositPhotos

Demand for rented rooms in shared apartments in Italian cities is going up, and so are the prices, according to the latest figures from property listings website Idealista, compiled for Adnkronos.

Milan remains the most expensive place to rent an apartment in Italy – and one of the top ten most expensive places to rent in the world.

Prices went up almost everywhere in Italy in 2019, the study found, and the average price increase was three percent.

You might dream of renting in central Florence, but can you afford it? Photo: Depositphotos

The most dramatic price increase was seen in Padova, where the average rental price shot up by 18.6 percent year on year.

Among the cities with the biggest average price increases, the survey also highlights Bologna (+8.7%) and Trieste (+13.3%)

The average price of a rented room in a shared apartment in an Italian city is now 328 euros per month, up from 318 euros this time last year, according to the study.

READ ALSO: What's wrong with the Italian property market?

The most expensive flatshares are unsurprisingly found in university cities as well as cities with a high number of “off-site workers”, the survey said.

Broadly, prices in northern and central areas were found to be higher and rising faster than those in southern cities.

However, prices didn't go up everywhere.

Prices dropped in Reggio Calabria (-7.9%),  L'Aquila (-6.4%), Genoa (-3.7%), Viterbo (2.5%) and Pisa (-2.2%), the study showed.

And the survey noted that the average age of those renting rooms in Italian cities is now 29, underlining the fact that flatsharing is no longer just for students.

The top five most expensive Italian cities

(By average monthly cost of renting a single room.)

  1. Milan: 465 euros

  2. Rome: 408 euros

  3. Florence: 393 euros

  4. Padua: 307 euros

  5. Bologna: 371 euros

The five cheapest Italian cities

  1. Reggio Calabria: 186 euros

  2. Enna: 189 euros

  3. L'Aquila: 191 euros

  4. Catania: 211

  5. Palermo: 233

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LIVING IN ITALY

The Italian holiday calendar for 2023

Italy gets a good number of public holidays, but they sometimes fall on a weekend. Here are the dates to plan for next year.

The Italian holiday calendar for 2023

Italy has long been known for being fairly generous with its public holidays, with Austria being the only EU country with more holidays (13). 

In total, Italian residents enjoy 11 national public holidays plus a local holiday for the patron saint of their cities (for instance St Ambrose in Milan, St Mark in Venice, St John in Florence, etc.).

READ ALSO: Why do Milan residents get a day off on December 7th?

But, as some Italian speakers might say, ‘non è tutto oro quel che luccica’ (all that glitters is not gold). In fact, all national holidays in Italy are taken on the day they fall on that year rather than being moved to the nearest Monday as is the case in other countries, including the UK.

This means that if a certain holiday is on a Saturday or a Sunday, there is no extra day off for residents.

It also means that there are ‘good’ holiday years and ‘bad’ ones, and, while 2022 wasn’t a particularly good one – as many as four public holidays fell on a weekend day – 2023 only has one such holiday: New Year’s Day, which will fall on Sunday, January 1st.

Deck chair on Italian seaside

Italian residents will get five three-day weekends in 2023 thanks to public national holidays. Photo by Alberto PIZZOLI / AFP

2023 holiday calendar

  • January 1, 2023 (New Year’s Day): Sunday
  • January 6, 2023 (Epiphany): Friday
  • April 10, 2023 (Easter Monday): Monday
  • April 25, 2023 (Liberation Day): Tuesday
  • May 1, 2023 (Labour Day): Monday
  • June 2, 2023 (Italian Republic Day): Friday
  • August 15, 2023 (Ferragosto): Tuesday
  • November 1, 2023 (All Saints’ Day): Wednesday
  • December 8, 2023 (Feast of the Immaculate Conception): Friday
  • December 25, 2023 (Christmas Day): Monday
  • December 26, 2023 (St Stephen’s Day): Tuesday

As shown by the above list, Christmas Eve (December 24th) and New Year’s Eve (December 31st) are not official public holidays in Italy, but many local companies do give their staff both days off as a gesture of goodwill. 

That said, in 2023 Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve will both fall on a Sunday, so residents will already be home from work. 

Like both ‘Eves’, Easter Sunday is also not considered a public holiday, but, once again, residents are already home from work on the day given that it falls on a Sunday every year.  

2023 ‘bridges’ and long weekends

Whether or not a certain year is a good one for holidays also depends on the number of ‘bridges’ available.

For the uninitiated, ‘fare il ponte (‘to do the bridge’) is the noble art of taking an extra day off when a public holiday falls on a Tuesday or Thursday – the most audacious might do this with a Wednesday holiday too.

Sadly, 2023 doesn’t provide a lot of opportunities to do this. There are only two possible bridges: one for Liberation Day, falling on Tuesday, April 25th and one for Ferragosto, on Tuesday, August 15th.

But, on a more positive note, six of next year’s public holidays will fall either on a Monday or a Friday, giving residents five three-day weekends and a four-day one – Christmas Day (falling on Monday) is immediately followed by St Stephen’s Day on Tuesday.

Italian non-holiday holidays

There are seven dates in Italy’s calendar that are considered official but not public holidays, meaning you don’t get a day off. 

These are known as ‘solennità civili’ (civil feasts) and include National Unity Day on the first Sunday of November, the day of Italy’s patron saints Francesco and Caterina on October 4th, and the anniversary of the unification of Italy on March 17th.

Display from Italian Air Force for Italy's Unity Day

National Unity Day, which is celebrated every year on the first Sunday of November, is one of Italy’s ‘civil feasts’. Photo by Filippo MONTEFORTE / AFP

That’s in addition to nearly 30 national and international days of commemoration or celebration that Italy recognises, including Holocaust Remembrance Day (January 27th), Europe Day (May 9th) and Christopher Columbus Day (October 12th). 

Much like the previously mentioned solennità civili, none of the above will get you a day off.

Other holidays

If you’re an employee in Italy, you’re entitled to paid holiday time, and the very minimum allowance is four weeks (or 20 days) a year – that’s 18 days less than in Austria, which leads the EU pack in minimum paid leave.

That said, many Italian contracts, particularly those for state employees, allow for five weeks (or 25 days) of paid leave per year. 

It’s also worth noting that, by law, employees must take at least two weeks of paid leave consecutively (i.e. two in a row) and all paid leave accumulated over the course of a year must be taken within 18 months from the end of that year.

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