How to get residency in Italy

Getting residency in Italy is surprisingly easy, especially if you live in a small town. This article will cover how to establish physical residency in a property in Italy. If you need information on obtaining a residency permit, also known as a permesso di soggiorno, please refer to this blog.

Let’s dive into the process of establishing residency in Italy!

Get your Contract

To obtain residency, the most important requirement is a valid rental contract or ownership of a house. If you are living with family, you will only need a signed declaration of hospitality.

If you have a rental contract, ensure that it has been signed and registered with the Agenzie delle Entrate. Some types of contracts, such as short-term ones, cannot be used to claim residency. Under a Transitorio contract, you are allowed by law, but some property owners may not allow it. In this case, it’s advisable to check with the owner and inform them of your intention to change residency to that location.

Head to the Comune

To obtain residency in Italy, you will need to go to your local comune offices. In a small town, you can drop in, but in larger cities, you will likely need to make an appointment ahead of time. Look up your local comune website with the keyword “residency” and you should be directed to the correct page.

For reference, here are some details for specific cities:

Rome: No appointment is needed. You can do it in person or online via PEC or via a raccomandata.

Florence: The website has details on which form to fill out and which office to go to if you are applying for the first time, changing within the city, or changing from outside.

Napoli: Check with the office of your specific municipality within Naples. Some you can pass by, some need an appointment.

Milan: The service is set up online, but you will need to go in person to check documents. There are different services for EU and non-EU residents.

Once you know where to go, bring your rental contract, an ID (passport), and permesso di soggiorno if relevant. The specific comune might require another form, but it should be available at the offices.

Hand in your documents, and that’s it! Technically there is one last check, but at this point, they will give you a document stating that you have requested residency and that you can sign up with your local ASL to get a doctor.

The last check

Usually, it is required that the police verify your residence by paying a visit to ensure that you live where you say you do. However, in the small towns I have lived in, they have never done this. Friends in larger cities like Rome and Turin have reported that the police do come and check.

There is nothing to worry about, as it is typically just a knock on the door to see if you are there, and occasionally a quick peek inside. Once they are satisfied, they will sign you off as an official resident.

What if I need to change my residency?

You go through the same process with the same office, whether you change within the same city, or change cities all together.

So you are a resident, what now?

As a resident, you are now required to pay for the garbage tax and select a local doctor.

To pay for garbage tax, you’ll need to set up an account with the TARI office, usually located where you applied for your residency. The amount you pay is determined by your house size and the number of occupants.

If you own a car, you will also need to register it when obtaining your residency.

In addition, you can apply for an electronic carta d’identita and select a general practitioner at your local ASL office with your residency.

Why should I get residency in Italy?

For some visas and permesso di soggiorno situations, claiming residency is mandatory, as in the case of the elective residency visa. However, even if it is not required, there are several reasons why you might want to claim residency:

  1. It puts you on the path to citizenship. To obtain citizenship by living in Italy, you must have had residency for 10 years, not just living here.
  2. It entitles you to access a medico di base, or a family doctor, for free.
  3. It allows you to get a Carta d’Identit√†, which in turn enables you to obtain a SPID, a digital identity necessary to log in to many official websites.

Evelyn Hill

2 Comments

  1. Giulia on August 21, 2023 at 3:25 pm

    Very helpful information, thank you!
    Once a long-term rental contract is obtained, and local police have verified that I am an official resident, is it possible to travel within Italy, or within Europe? Or is it necessary to stay in place for a full 45 days, if residency is being established to apply for Italian citizenship?

    • Evelyn Hill on September 16, 2023 at 1:51 pm

      You can travel within Italy and Europe even before that, just make sure someone is around when the Police come by- or that your name is on the buzzer downstairs. There’s no rule about staying put.

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