What to know about the annual Italian property tax, IMU

View from Italian home terrace
View from Italian home terrace

Nationally the annual property tax in Italy is called IMU, Imposta municipale propria. It was previously known as ICI, Imposta comunale sugli immobili. The name may be slightly different in some autonomous areas.

Note: tax rules can change from time to time. Use the following information as a guide, keeping in mind it may not be current, or your situation may be different.

Are there IMU exemptions?

Owners of normal homes are exempt from paying IMU if the home is their primary residence. Agricultural land is also exempt in many mountainous and hilly towns. Owners of homes in luxury tax categories (e.g. A/1, A/8 and A/9) are not exempt.

What are the IMU deadlines?

The IMU tax is payable in two installments, normally mid-June and mid-December. It is also possible to make a single lump sum payment in June.

How is the the annual property tax IMU calculated?

Unfortunately towns do not often notify taxpayers of the taxes due although in theory they could and probably should. To understand how much IMU is due, options include:

How can the IMU tax due be paid?

Taxes in Italy are normally paid using a standard "F24" payment form which can be submitted directly using the Agenzia delle Entrate website (requires an Italian IBAN bank routing code; this approach is best as the receipt remains available online even if one changes banks) or via home banking, for those with an Italian bank account.

For those in Italy, it is possible to pay an F24 form:

Paying in person will incur a commission, probably around €2.50.

For those abroad, it is also possible to wire the funds directly to the town, by obtaining the IBAN routing number from the town and asking exactly what information needs to be inserted in the wire transfer description/message field. This approach is not recommended due to the risk the tax payment not be properly recorded. Probably it will be necessary to include:

Verify the entire amount of the tax is due to the town. Should a percentage be due the state, two payments will need to be made, one to the town and one to the state.

What happens if I am late in paying IMU?: how to deal with IMU tax arrears

As towns don't normally send out IMU tax notices unless a taxpayer is late in making payments, it can be easy to forget to pay IMU on time. Towns are always happy to receive tax payments, even if they are late. A late fee is added to the amount due, the fee depends on how late the payment is… and if the tax payer voluntarily offers to pay (Ravvedimento operoso) or if the town needs to solicit payment. It is always better to go to the taxman before the taxman comes calling.

The online calculation tool mentioned previously can be used to calculate tax due for any of the previous five years.

In general the statue of limitations is five years from the date the tax was due or from a notice to pay is received. Thus if a taxpayer forgets to pay their IMU tax, the town has 5 years to send a late tax solicitation notice.

What is Tari the trash tax?

A separate annual tax, TARI (tassa sui rifiuti) applies for household trash. As with IMU, the town may or may not send an annual reminder. Consult the town's website for information on calculating and paying the TARI waste tax.

What are the property taxes in Italy?

IMU, Imposta municipale propria and TARI (tassa sui rifiuti)

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The above is offered as general guidance without warranty; changes may have occurred since it was written. Do consult with appropriate qualified professionals regarding your specific situation before making any real estate purchase.

About the author

Sean Michael Carlos

Sean Michael Carlos grew up in Rhode Island, USA. He studied in the US, UK and Germany before settling in Italy where he has lived for over twenty-five years, in three different regions.

Sean is a licensed real estate agent in Italy with over 10 years experience in the sector and would love to hear from you if you are looking to buy or sell property in Italy.

Professional assistance available

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