Numebo track the cost of living across the world. Their findings show Italy is one of the most expensive southern European countries for expats.
Where you live in Italy will have an impact on your cost of living. For example, renting a room in Milan is more expensive than renting a room in Naples.
The major cities, especially the touristic ones, is expensive. The cheapest place to live is in the south of Italy, in a small town.
Cost of living – daily items
According to Numbeo, the world’s largest cost of living database, you can expect to pay the following prices in Italy (updated in June 2021). We show comparative prices in pounds with the average UK costs.
While grocery shopping is generally cheaper in the UK, other elements are cheaper in Italy.
How much to live comfortably in Italy?
According to Numbeo, the estimated average costs for a single person, without rent are €747.92 (£639.95), while the same costs for a family of 4 are €2,642.81 (£2,261.32). Compared to Spain, for example, the cost of living in Italy is over 20% higher.
Nevertheless, Italy is still a great option for those who want to live well and have a high quality of life without spending too much.
Renting and Buying a home in Italy
Compared to the UK, where a one-bedroom apartment in a city centre averages £749.54 (€875.99) per month, Italian rent averages at €580.97. However, when comparing to the US, Italian rent looks very attractive. The average monthly rent in a city centre in the US is $1,329.62 (€1,120.62).
Outside a city centre, the rent drops considerably for both the UK and Italy, with average prices at £614.10 (€717.70) and €443.01 respectively. For the US, it comes in at $1,078.13 (€908.66).
Average property prices for Italy are considerably lower than in the UK. The average cost per square metre for a city apartment in the UK is £4,316.48 (€5,044.67) compared to Italy, €3,113.58. However, the US fares better with an average square metre cost of $3,583.41 (€3,020.15)
However, one thing to bear in mind is the affordability of the property is affected by the average salary in Italy.
Average salary lower in Italy
As reflected in the InterNations survey of expats, Italian salaries do not reach the heights expats are used to in the UK, USA or Canada.
In Italy, the average net salary per month is €1,431.74. This is compared to £1,948.38 (€2,277.07) in the UK and $3,548.81 (€2,981.00) in the US.
Cost of living overall
The cost of living in Italy is, on average, 0.73% lower than in United States. Rent in Italy is, on average, 48.03% lower than in United States.
The cost of living in Italy compared to the UK is generally cheaper. While groceries and food are slightly cheaper in the UK, the general cost of living including rent is 10.35% higher in the UK, according to Numbeo.