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Review 2052: Italia Property Management, Casa Fargneto

www.italiapropertymanagement.com

Not Recommended
Review by Chris from UK

5bed/2bath house, near Castel Rigone, Umbria


Casa Fargneto, photo by

When

From October 2006, 1 year+

Location

The house is in a secluded location, 3 km from Castel Rigone, down a 1 km white road. It is a beautiful private location in a valley with wonderful views. The area is peaceful, but not too far from the village and other amenities.

Nearby Amenities

Castel Rigone is the nearest place with a few shops, 3 km away. You could walk/cycle, it would take maybe 40 minutes.

The House/Apartment

The house is a traditional rambling farmhouse with lots of rooms, a large living and dining area, another reception room, as well as kitchen, two bathrooms and five bedrooms. It is in pretty good shape although some furniture is quite old.

Garden

The surrounding land is not a garden as such, but is well maintained and sometimes used as grazing for animals. There are terraces for outdoor dining/sitting. No pool.

Furnishings/Cleanliness/Living Areas

The house is well furnished and comfortable. It is clean and tidy.

Bedrooms/Bathrooms

The bedrooms all have twin or double beds, they are a bit spartan but functional. There are two bathrooms with the necessary facilities.

Kitchen

There is a big kitchen with plenty of new units. The oven is big, and the hob (stove) has, I think, six hotplates (burners).

Agency and Representatives (and price)

We were looking to rent a property for a year in Umbria. Through Slow Travel we found Italia Property Management, and arranged to view some of their properties in April 2006.

Christine and Peter, an English couple, were simply wonderful. Very open and approachable, they were much more interested in addressing our concerns about moving to Italy, than in just getting us to rent a property.

They went to great pains to show us around, introduced us to their own lifestyle, and made us feel that we too could start a new life in Italy. They clearly take great care of the properties within their charge. We really felt we could identify with them, and will be renting this property in Autumn 2006 for a year.

We think the price for this property is very reasonable.

Note from SlowTrav: This review was submitted after the reviewer evaluated the property but not before actually living in it. Subsequent to submission, the reviewer moved into the property and sent us the following update.

Update to Review - April 24, 2007

The house itself, Casa Fargneto, is quite nice and did live up to expectations, but we viewed it before choosing it for a long term rental. It is large and spacious, and of course, costs the earth to keep warm in winter. It needed serious efforts to get it properly clean as only perfunctory efforts had been made in between previous clients - the bathroom and kitchen in particular were quite grubby.

The first problem was the rental agreement, nothing more than a "gentleman's agreement" having no weight in law. We had made it clear to the agent that we wanted to rent for a year from October, but were given a six month agreement with the option to renew. Suspicious of this, I queried it with the agent who assured me this was standard practise, for our protection in case we wanted to move out earlier. Renewal would be no problem. I reluctantly agreed to this for the sake of domestic harmony.

So, trusting the agent Christine completely, I submitted the review to you - at her instigation.

We had foolishly paid six months rent plus deposit (7000) in advance, to save the exorbitant bank transfer charges. The money was paid into a Luxembourg account and so of course we couldn't get the necessary evidence for a Permesso di Soggiorno.

After Christmas the owners told us by email via Christine that they wanted us to leave at the end of six months - the end of March. Naturally I was furious; we had kept this large place warm and cared for over the winter hoping to enjoy its beautiful location and facilities for the summer. We had cleaned it thoroughly and renovated some furniture.

There were other issues such as the installation of a satellite dish, but I will not bore you with these, or the wasps nest in the eaves.

I suppose that if I were of a more sanguine nature we could simply have refused to move out until good and ready - I'm sure they could have done little - but we couldn't sleep at night. So instead we left a month early - giving notice as per the unenforceable agreement, and got some money back.

We haven't lost much but we have been bitterly disappointed. And I can't recommend the agent.

Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?

See update above.

Things to do in this area

Castel Rigone is really the only "hilltop" village overlooking Lake Trasimeno, with its numerous activities. It has a good restaurant/hotel.

Passignano the lakeside resort, is close by. Maggione, a 15 minute drive away, has shops but is otherwise disappointing.

Perugia is the nearest main town, and can be reached by rail in 20 minutes from Maggione.

This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.

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