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    Italy's $1 homes might be dirt cheap, but they need a lot of work — take a look inside

    Abstract:I went all the way to Sicily to visit three towns that are selling homes for $1. Here's what foreign buyers are getting themselves into.

      I recently traveled all the way to Sicily to visit three towns that have sold homes for as little as $1.

      The housing scheme has been widely trialed throughout Italy as rural towns attempt to revitalize their communities and economies that have suffered at the hands of urbanization.

      While a home in southern Europe for $1 may sound like a dream come true, there is obviously a catch.

      Most of the $1 homes I visited in Sambuca, Mussomeli, and Cammarata were derelict and in dire need of repair.

      However, I was struck by their historic charm and potential — especially once I saw one that had been completely renovated.

      Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

      Over the past few months, you may have become aware of a certain phenomenon.

      A plethora of Italian towns have adopted a scheme of selling abandoned homes off for 1 euro ($1).

      Urbanization has led to the dwindling populations of provincial settlements as cities and their suburbs thrive and become overpopulated. As a result, some of Italy's most beautiful, historic small towns are dying out.

      The $1 housing schemes are designed to combat that, and what success there has been so far has led to a proliferation of similar strategies being deployed across the country.

      Read more: A picturesque Sicilian town succeeded in selling off its abandoned homes after auctions started at just $1

      The schemes have received plenty of media coverage, and many of the towns have become inundated with offers from foreigners on their insanely cheap properties.

      However, a home for $1 was always going to be too good to be true, and most of these properties are often in a dilapidated condition, requiring thousands of dollars in restoration and renovation to make them habitable again — let alone nice.

      I recently traveled all the way to Sicily to visit three of the towns that have adopted the $1 home schemes — Sambuca, Mussomeli, and Cammarata — to see what foreign buyers are really getting themselves into.

      Here's what they look like inside, and finally, once they're renovated.

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