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PROPERTY

Is it too late to claim Italy’s building ‘superbonus’?

Is there still time to claim Italy's popular 'superbonus' discount for home renovations if you start your project now? Here's what you need to know about the timescales.

Is it too late to claim Italy's building 'superbonus'?
Could you still start a claim for Italy's superbonus? Photo by Laughing Cynic on Unsplash

Italy’s so-called ‘superbonus 110‘ continues to attract attention from home renovators keen to take advantage of potentially large sums of state aid available when making upgrades to property.

First introduced just over two years ago, in May 2020, it is billed as giving homeowners the chance to claim a tax deduction of up to 110 percent of the cost of renovation work.

READ ALSO: How Italy’s building ‘superbonus’ has changed in 2022

Building jobs covered by the bonus are related to making energy-efficiency upgrades and reducing seismic risk.

Other types of building bonuses existed before and are still available, but the popularity of this particular bonus stemmed from its unprecedented high value.

Due to demand, the popular scheme has been entangled in bureaucracy, fraudulent claims and consequent delays, leaving many property owners trying to use it concerned about whether they’ll able to finish their renovation projects in time.

Home renovators have more time to access Italy’s building superbonus 110, following the government’s announcement to extend the deadline again. But is it enough? (Photo by ALBERTO PIZZOLI / AFP)

In response, the Italian government has rolled on deadlines for accessing the bonus several times, with its latest extension giving some extra breathing space for owners of single family homes.

So is there enough time left to benefit if you haven’t started works yet? It all depends on the type of property you plan to renovate.

Here’s an overview of the likelihood of accessing Italy’s superbonus renovation pot now.

Single family homes

Those up against the clock are owners of single family homes.

Although the government granted a three-month extension to claim for building work on single homes, it’s still a tight timescale – particularly considering the continuing widespread delays.

It means property owners now have until September 30th to complete 30 percent of the overall works.

The extension replaces the previous completion date of 30 percent of renovations by June 30th – an impending risk to those caught up in delays and unable to meet the deadline in time.

READ ALSO:

It might just be enough time if you’re already in a queue or work has started on your project, but what if you’d like to get the ball rolling now?

Although there are only four months left to meet this deadline, tax expert Nicolò Bolla of Accounting Bolla told us he gets “daily requests” for the superbonus.

However, he advised homeowners to be careful: “It is a long journey and you need to have some money to renovate your property with the bonus. It’s an expanded timeframe and there are still supply chain issues,” he said.

Such issues include finding available building contractors and other professionals needed to carry out renovations, such as a geometra (civil engineer) and a termotecnico (thermal technician for heating and air conditioning).

Credit transfer problems have further delayed the scheme, meaning it could be difficult to obtain the credit in the first place needed to finance the works.

READ ALSO: Nine things we’ve learned about claiming Italy’s building ‘superbonus’

Can you find a contractor who will give you a quote? That could be an indication of being able to access the superbonus. Photo by MAX BEDENDI on Unsplash

As such, many people have been caught up in delays for months or since the superbonus began and are finding themselves still short of the 30 percent completion threshold.

Plus, even if you do meet that deadline in time, the final overall date to claim the superbonus for this category of property is still December 31st, 2022. That gives just three months to complete the remaining 70 percent of works.

Of course, the scale of the project will have an impact. If you’re planning to carry out extensive works, it’s unlikely there will be enough time to start the process – that is unless the government continue to roll on the scheme for this category, which they have previously done at the last minute.

READ ALSO: Do you have to be Italian to claim Italy’s building bonuses?

An indication will be if you can find a construction company available when you call your local suppliers. If they get back to you with a quote, there could be a slight chance.

Many homeowners, however, have told The Local that a lot of suppliers simply never even responded to inquiries and the ones who did came back with hugely inflated prices, due to both said high demand and increasing material costs.

Other property types

If you live in a different category of property, there are much longer timescales and more chances to benefit from the superbonus.

For work carried out on condominiums and by individuals on buildings consisting of two to four separate building units (even if owned by a single owner or co-owned by several individuals), the deadline to access the superbonus is December 31st, 2025.

However, the amount you can claim drops each year – from a maximum payout of 110 percent this year, the bonus is reduced to 70 percent for the whole of 2024 and 65 percent for the year after until December 31st 2025.

For a full list of the deadlines according to various property types, see here.

See more in The Local’s Italian property section.

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MONEY

EXPLAINED: What is Italy doing to cut the rising cost of living?

Amid soaring inflation and price rises, the Italian government has announced new measures to help families and businesses keep costs down. Here's what you need to know.

EXPLAINED: What is Italy doing to cut the rising cost of living?

Italy approved a much-anticipated aid decree on Thursday, August 4th, bringing a new round of state funding intended to tackle the country’s most critical issues: from the rising cost of living and sky-high inflation to the energy and supply crisis. 

READ ALSO: Fuel tax cut and help with energy bills: Italy approves inflation aid package

The ‘aiuti bis’ aid package, worth around 17 billion euros ($17.4 billion), likely marks the last major act by outgoing prime minister Mario Draghi before an early general election next month.

The funding is seen as badly needed after inflation hit 8 percent in Italy in June – the most severe spike the country has experienced since 1976.

After weeks of speculation about exactly which measures may or may not be included in the decree, we now know it contains everything from an extension to the fuel duty cut to more help with energy bills for those on lower incomes.

Here’s what you need to know about the latest measures intended to keep the cost of living under control.

Extension to fuel duty cut 

The current discount on fuel duties is to be extended again to September 20th, though the value of the discount will drop from 30 to 25 cents. 

The discount was recently extended to August 21st but the government decided to further prolong the incentive in a bid to ease the blow that record fuel prices have dealt to consumers and businesses.

The cut was initially introduced as far back as March when the average prices at the pump for petrol and diesel both exceeded the two-euro mark.

Help with energy bills

Measures introduced in the first half of the year to help lower-income households and vulnerable people pay rising energy bills will be extended under the new decree.

It extends an existing government discount on gas and electricity bills for a further three months, until the end of 2022, as well as reducing system charges.

READ ALSO:

Italy’s tax on the ‘excess profits’ of energy companies has meanwhile been extended to June 2023 after the government reportedly received fewer payments than expected.

Tax cut for employees

Workers earning a gross income of under €35,000 are eligible for a two percent tax saving, amounting to a small monthly ‘pay rise’ until the end of this year.

“Already in the budget law we reduced social contributions by 0.8 percent; for the second half of the year this reduction goes up to 2 percent, as we’re now adding 1.2 percent”, said Economy Minister Daniele Franco at a press conference on Thursday.

As the tax relief lasts until the end of the calendar year for a six-month period, the July deduction will be retroactive.

New aid measures announced on Thursday are hoped to boost Italy’s consumer spending power as the cost of everyday goods rises. Photo by ANDREAS SOLARO / AFP

Those earning €35,000 can expect to save around a further €30 per month (1.2 percent of a monthly salary of €2,692 – most Italian salaries are paid out over 13 rather than 12 months to give employees a tredicesima Christmas bonus).

To find out how this may apply to you, it’s advisable to speak to an accountant or your local Italian tax agency (Agenzie delle entrate) office.

More funding for mental health treatment

The new decree will also enhance the existing ‘psychologist bonus’ (bonus psicologo) by allocating an additional 15 million euros to the measure. This will bring the total amount of funds available for the bonus to 25 million euros. 

The bonus was officially introduced at the end of July to help make mental health services more affordable, amid a pandemic-induced crisis in Italy.

All individuals with an Isee (a calculation of relative household income and wealth) lower than 50,000 euros will be eligible to receive a 600-euro voucher, which they’ll be able to use when seeing professionals listed on Italy’s official register of psychologists.

See more information about claiming the bonus in a separate article here.

Discount on public transport tickets

The government will allocate a total of 101 million euros to funding its ‘transport bonus’ (bonus trasporti); 22 million more than the original amount.

The bonus takes the form of a one-time 60-euro discount to be used on the purchase of monthly or yearly tickets for local transport services.

It will be available from September 2022 to all pensioners, students, and employees with an Isee of up to 35,000 euros.

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