Casa Avventura

We’ve been using “Casa Ideale” as the working name for our house. It’s the name Kevin used when he was marketing the property and the house concept.

AdventureWe hope the house will turn out to be “Ideal”, but we know getting it built and moving in will be an adventure, so I’m going to use “Casa Avventura” as our working name from now on.

Image: Pixabay CC0 - No attribution required |

Closing: Short and Sweet

Friday, a little after 6. Everyone present who needs to be.

We had done the oral reading of the documents on Wednesday, so we were here just to pass around money and sign the contracts.

Signing atto to buy property in ItalyThe contracts are in both English and Italian. My translator and my attorney agree that they are the same. The seller, the translator, and I have to sign each page of three copies of the contacts and of the statement that the translation is accurate. As I did in the bank, I have to carefully write out “Edwin Joseph Katzman” each time. Legible, but cursive. Not an easy combination for me.

Just to add some humor to the situation, we also have to sign an energy certificate. This document rates and explains the energy efficiency of the property — in our case, the ruin. (It’s not very efficient. Very drafty.)

To finish up, the notaio signs everything, while having an animated conversation with my lawyer, which I can’t follow. The translator assures me it has nothing to do with my deal. They’re talking about a mutual acquaintance, and not in a positive way.

A few photos, handshakes all around, and we’re done. Anne and I own the land and the pile of stones.

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Contract Signing Trip

Kevin and I had a Skype call this morning to iron out a few details of my upcoming trip. The main purpose of the trip is to sign the final documents and to get the property transferred into our names.

He also wanted to just recap the project budget.

We started with a basic schedule. I plan to depart Chicago on the evening of Sunday, October 23. Rather than flying to Rome and driving 3 1/2 hours across the mountains, I’m going to fly into Ancona, on the coast about an hour from the property.

buon-viaggioAlso, when I looked into flights, surprisingly to me, only American has a nonstop to Rome this time of year and it’s very expensive. So I’d have to connect somewhere, so I might as well connect and go to Ancona. My plan is to use United miles and connect through Munich to Ancona. That gives me a 9:20pm departure, 5:00pm arrival in Ancona on Monday evening, October 24.

Then Tuesday we’d walk the property and decide where to place the house and discuss related issues. Late in the afternoon we have an appointment at a windows and doors place. Apparently, we have to make some decisions about these early in the process. I need to figure out a way to get Anne’s input in a timely manner. .

Wednesday, the atto (closing) is scheduled in the afternoon. Kevin also wants to discuss flooring, so I assume we’ll visit a showroom of some type.

Kevin made a great suggestion. He’s planning on having us visit some completed houses to focus on windows, doors, and flooring.

On Thursday, I think we’ll get into some details about project timing and planning. He’s then leaving that afternoon to go out of town.

I can come back on Friday, but it seems if I gone over there I should stay a bit and accomplish a few more things, but this is all TBD at this point.

But I haven’t yet booked the trip yet. The plan for today, after the call with Kevin, was to complete the wire transfer and then book this flight. But the call went differently than either of us expected.

We began to discuss the project budget and we both were surprised and confused.

More to come.

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Since Anne is not going with me to sign the purchase agreement for the property, I need to have a power of attorney, or procura speciale. Giovanna sent me the proper documents, in both Italian and English. She said to have Anne sign them and get them notarized. Then she said I also need to get an apostille for each document.

A what? I thought at first this must be an Italian term and that she was misunderstanding what a notary in the US does. No, she said. It’s what you call it in the US, too. (I assume it is a Latin term originally.)

Apostille Click image to enlarge
Click image to enlarge

It’s a certification by the state that the notary is a notary and is commonly used when sending documents to foreign countries.

Giovanna thought I needed to ask the notary to get the apostille, but my research showed I could do it, through the Illinois Secretary of State. I could mail it to the state capital, Springfield, or go in person to an office in Chicago. Unfortunately, Giovanna had sent the documents to me too late for me to get it via return mail. So I needed to make a trip downtown.

I was dreading this step, figuring that I’d need to stand in line and wait a long time to get the documents processed.

As it turns out, waiting wasn’t the problem I encountered. There was no line and a friendly employee took my documents right away . . . and told me she couldn’t give me the apostilles.

The problem was with the notary’s certification. She had just stamped and signed the document, but it needed to have a boilerplate statement included about who signed and when. The notary had not included this, so I had to return home empty-handed.

It seems that a document prepared here includes this statement as a matter of course, but I do think the notary should have noticed something was amiss when she certified Anne’s signature.

I added the right text and Anne went and got the documents notarized again. I was off to Chicago again, wondering what I’d be missing this time.

Fortunately, smooth sailing. In about 10 minutes, I had my documents with apostilles and should be set for the contract signing next week.

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Permesso di Costruire We Get Approval to Build Our House!

We have received our formal Permesso (approval for demolition and rebuilding of a larger building). It’s been three months since we agreed to buy the property and about a month since the complete request for the Permesso was submitted to the comune planning office.

permesso di costruire - permission to build
Our Permesso Click image to enlarge

Now, with approval in hand, I will wire the deposit to the seller. The plan is then for me to go to Italy in two weeks for the atto (closing).

We have a few details to iron out before I go, both related to the transaction and to the plans to site the house on the property and then begin the demolition and rebuilding. I have calls set up with Kevin and Giovanna to go over these issues.

I’ll report back.

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