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  • Writer's pictureMark Tedesco

Our Italian Adventure: Moving to Italy is Easy

PART 94: It might be interesting to share how we pulled off living in Italy for part of the year. I will post some steps and what we are learning along the way.

We love every minute of it, and what was once a dream is our life!

We live in Tuscany in the Fall, then back again in the Spring, and in California for the rest of the time (in a previous blog, I explained why we live in Italy only part of the year).

Let's explore how easy it is to establish a life in Italy

Step 1: Agatha Christie is one of my favorite authors, and her novel "Murder is Easy" inspired this blog. Not because it is about killing someone but because what seems complex can become easy, depending on how one goes about it.

Step 2: When someone asks us how the process of moving to or living in Italy has been, our first response is always: we were surprised at how easy it has been.

It is true; what seemed impossible has become an easy process of establishing a life in Italy.

Step 3: Challenges and solutions.

When we decided to move to Italy, we had to figure out how.

Some of the challenges and questions we had included:

  • Residency and citizenship

  • Where to live?

  • How to find a house?

  • Rent or buy?

  • Full-time or part-time?

  • How do we figure out how to make it happen?

Step 4: Residency and citizenship

I spent several months researching residency and citizenship requirements for various European countries at the beginning of our journey to a life in Italy. Initially, we thought our only option was to find a country with the easiest residency or citizenship requirements and choose that one.

It took us a while to realize that we had other options. Due to our obligations in California, we could only be away part time. We then understood that we didn't have to choose between full-time residency in Europe and not living in Europe at all. We discovered that we could follow the Schengen Zone guidelines, living in Europe for three months at a time while maintaining our California residency.

Once we realized this, we no longer felt pressured to search for a country with easy residency requirements. Instead, we could choose a country that suited us best. Given my previous experience of living in Italy during my university years and the presence of many friends there, Italy became the obvious choice.

Step 5: Where to live

We researched various websites, joined online expat groups, and explored different areas in Italy to find the perfect town or area to live in. However, the more people we spoke with and the more information we gathered, the more confused we became.

At that point, my partner suggested, "Why don't we build on what we have rather than start from zero. We have friends in Puglia; why don't we live there? Then we can figure the rest out along the way."

Following visits to Orte, Perugia, Assisi, and the outskirts of Rome, we decided to rent a house in Puglia from a friend of ours.

It turned out to be one of the best decisions we made. Renting a house was a great first step.

During our Christmas vacation in Puglia, we visited the house our friend was renovating. It had two bathrooms, an open kitchen, and a rooftop terrace – it felt like it had been made for us. We asked, "Would you rent it to us for a few months?" he agreed.

We flew back in the summer and started our first months living in wonderful Italy.

Step 6: Full or part-time?

We initially planned to live in Italy full-time, but we faced many obstacles, including work. It took us a while to realize that living in two places is doable if we control our expenses and follow the guidelines of the Schengen Zone (see previous blog on this).

After renting our friend's house in Puglia for two months, we asked if we could rent it for 12 months and stay there twice a year for 2-3 months each time.

After our first 18 months in Italy, it became clearer to us what we were looking for in our Italian experience. So, we recently moved to Tuscany and bought a home in the Monte Amiata area.

Step 7: What is the point of these stories?

Moving to Italy has been a smooth process for us due to these factors:

- We understood that it wasn't necessary to commit to living here all year round; we could spend part of the year here.

- We realized that we didn't need to have all the logistics of living in a foreign country figured out beforehand; learning along the way is part of the adventure.

- We found that building friendships with locals gave us a sense of family and helped us navigate the red tape and uncertainties.

- We understood that our attitudes play a significant role in shaping our experience in Italy.


Living in Italy can be an easy and exciting adventure if we open ourselves up to the experience, make new friends, and learn to let go and allow things to unfold in their own time.

More next time.

Now on sale for $2.99: My book is "Stories from Puglia: Two Californians in Southern Italy." Amazon US:

Amazon Italy- my book "Lei mi ha sedotto. Una storia d'amore con Roma":

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Jun 09
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

An insightful blog! For those considering such a move, do your homework and go for it! Life is too short to have regrets! Thanks Mark!

Mark Tedesco
Mark Tedesco
Jun 09
Replying to

Yes, life is short. That's why we did the move before having figured it all out, and we are learning along the way. Thanks for the comment!

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