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Engel & Völkers Licence Partner Venice > Blog > Emiliano Conti, Engel & Volkers private office advisor, takes us to discover the apartments for sale in Venice

Emiliano Conti, Engel & Volkers private office advisor, takes us to discover the apartments for sale in Venice

What does it mean to sell a house in Venice today? What are the most popular properties in post Covid times? We asked the expert Engel & Volkers Venice who shared his experience with us

More than a year after the pandemic, the Venice real estate market does not seem to have been affected by the crisis in the sector. If possible, the Serenissima has managed to further increase its appeal, confirming itself as a privileged destination for those wishing to invest in a second home, but also, perhaps somewhat surprisingly, a new paradise for smart working.

What are the most desired apartments for sale in Venice at the moment?

The expert, Emiliano Conti, private office advisor for Engel & Volkers Venice tells us about it.

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How long have you been doing this job and how did you get started?

I started in 2016 and, as often happens in these cases, it all started by chance. Before working for Engel & Volkers I was doing something else, I was involved in financial services as a commercial.

After a few years a certain tiredness took over, I wanted to test myself with more interesting challenges. This is part of my character: I'm used to performance and working under pressure. In my old job I had come to a point where it seemed that all my sacrifices no longer paid off, I did not feel gratified enough and this was a source of frustration. Then I landed in Engel & Volkers Venice. Two hours of interview and my adventure in the sale of luxury homes in Venice has begun.

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Can you tell us a particularly significant anecdote related to your work?

There would be many anecdotes to tell, but this remains one of those to which I am most attached. For some time I had noticed a beautiful property in Giudecca and I kept wondering who could be the owner. Later I met a very wealthy French client. One day we were walking together and we passed right in front of that property and he told me: "If this property were in your management, I would buy it". And so it was. With the collaboration of the municipality of Venice, I followed my client in participating in the auction, which allowed him to buy the very house he wanted so much.

That day was one of the most exciting of my professional life. I followed it step by step, from the purchase to the opening day and we are still friends today.

It is clear that you are very fond of selling houses in Venice. Because?

There are many reasons why I love this job. First of all, because it allows you to save wonderful buildings (of which Venice is full) from ruin, giving it a new life. The second reason is that it allows you to come into contact with a lot of people: from the newlywed couple looking for a house to the wealthy foreign investor.

But the most important reason is linked to a personal factor: it is a job that constantly puts you in front of challenges and that offers independence in the ways and times of managing activities. I like the idea of ​​having the responsibility for the success and failure of what I do on my shoulders and this work can bring great rewards in this regard.

The latest in chronological order? About 4 months ago I was entrusted with the management of the Private Office division, a very high-end segment that did not yet exist in Venice. After demanding months and with the difficulties of setting up a new job from scratch, amidst doubts and anxieties, a first great result has arrived in these days: a purchase proposal with a mind-boggling figure. 12 million euros!

What types of houses are most in demand?

The Venetian real estate market is very particular, it has its own peculiarities, especially in the luxury real estate segment. The buyer usually does not pay too much attention to the number of rooms, but searches for specific characteristics that make the apartments for sale in Venice unique in the world of their kind.

Furthermore, they are almost always customers looking for a second home or an investment, so the choice can be guided by unconventional factors. The beauty, the uniqueness of the property, the artistic value are certainly among them.

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In general, the view of the city and the canals is always in great demand, as well as the presence of an elevator (very little taken for granted) or of a comfortable floor, and of an open one (terrace, attic, garden, etc.). The favorites are turnkey properties, houses for sale in Venice that do not need major renovations, especially if they are foreign buyers, "fearful" of the Italian bureaucracy and the possible inconvenience of a city that is still complex. That said, I could identify 3 types of most requested properties in Venice: the typically “Venetian” properties, with frescoes, stuccos, 4m high ceilings and typical local stylistic and architectural elements, located on the main floor and in prestigious contexts; the properties located on the upper floors , very bright, with a view and uncovered; the elegant buildings, of any size and of historical and artistic value.

If you can find the property that can combine all these characteristics, you can reach mind-boggling figures.

So is there a "typical buyer"?

There is a huge variety of customers, with different needs, expectations and backgrounds. Usually these are "proximity" customers. Suffice it to say that last year the real estate market in Venice registered 50% of Italian buyers, 20% French-speaking (France, Belgium, Luxembourg), 15% German and 15% Austrian. The percentage of non-EU citizens is quite low.

And what about the sestieri? Which are the ones where you buy and sell the most?

If I had to indicate one above all, without a doubt Dorsoduro. Together with San Marco it remains one of the most loved and requested districts, because it is prestigious but quiet, residential, well served, with buildings that are not too tall and too close to each other. One of the most promising districts is Giudecca, with increasing requests, as well as prices. This is probably because the houses for sale in Venice Giudecca offer incredible views of the city, offer several outdoor spaces, in addition to the fact that they are newer buildings with a lift.

In addition, I recommend keeping an eye on three former industrial areas, because I think they will prove to be promising for the near future: the Maritime area, where the cruise terminal was; the areas of Cannaregio and San Giobbe closest to the Ca 'Foscari campus under construction; the Celestia area, affected by a real estate redevelopment project.

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How did it go during the period of the pandemic?

2020 was the first year in which we concluded two entirely remote negotiations, one of which was with a non-EU buyer. We just put in a new procedure and it worked. In both cases, we proposed a guided video tour in which a professional and a friend designated by the buyer participated.

Given the success of the initiative, we decided to offer all customers a real estate video tour service, in addition to the traditional static photo shoot.

So has the pandemic changed the way we approach customers?

Exactly. After a preliminary telephone interview, about ten days before arrival in Venice, we now offer potential customers a video-call session that allows us to establish direct contact and, trivially, to look each other in the eye. For us it is important, because it almost always helps us to understand if there is a real interest on the other side and to make a first remote skimming.

For the customer it is very useful because it allows them to manage their requests much more efficiently, to plan all visits to the properties precisely, avoiding unnecessary misunderstandings or waste of time. The increase in performance is evident.

Do you think the trend of buying and selling homes has changed after the pandemic?

I would say no. Covid almost seems to have increased the appeal of Venice, which has become one of the favorite cities for smart working. The reason is simple: it allows you to work in one of the most beautiful places in the world, it offers fiber optics throughout the city, lots of events, attractions and lots of activities to do.

To this I add that mass tourism, post-pandemic, has significantly reduced, making it a much more peaceful, beautiful, livable and clean city. Indeed, many of those that were bought as second homes have become perfect homes for smart working. If you are lucky enough to be able to work from home in Venice it would be madness not to.

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Let's talk about prices: how much does it cost to buy a house in Venice center today?

Unfortunately or fortunately, purchase prices remained substantially unchanged, while in the rest of the country the sector recorded a -30% last year. This is precisely what makes the purchase of properties in Venice a stable and safe asset for investors from all over the world.

We conclude with a tip for all those who are looking for a home. What are the properties that you recommend to visit immediately for a possible purchase?

I have in mind 3 apartments in Venice that I think are very interesting. Although they are different in type, target and price range, they could all turn into an excellent investment.

A noble floor with lift in the San Marco area

Palazzetto San Stin in the San Polo area

A pied-à-terre with garden in Cannaregio

Absolutely not to be missed!

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