Londoner who bought house in Sicily for 85p urges others to follow him to Italy

A Londoner who bought a house in a Sicilian town for €1 (85p) is encouraging others to follow in his footsteps.

Danny McCubbin had spent 17 years living in London where the average house price is a staggering £514,000, according to the latest Office for National Statistics figures.

The 56-year-old digital consultant was intrigued after spotting articles about a €1 initiative to help breathe new life into Italian villages by offering homes at drastically low prices.

Having always planned to one day move to Italy, Danny saw the too-good-to-turn-down scheme the final push he needed.

“I have been volunteering for a community in Italy for over 10 years and it has always been my intention to move here one day,” he previously told Ladbible from his hillside terraced house.

“Friends from all over the world started sending me more articles about the project.

“I remember at the time that everyone seemed to be fascinated by this idea and I wanted to find out for myself if it was really too good to be true.”

After visiting Italy three times, during his house hunt, and viewing 25 properties in different locations, Danny found his ideal place in Mussomeli, a town with a population of 11,000.

A year in, he said the town has welcomed him and other budget buyers like one of their own.

“They know that we are helping to breathe life back into this town,” he said.

Originally from Australia, Danny had planned to live in Sicily part-time but with Brexit looming in December he applied for Italian residency before the end of his transition period.

He now has plans to set up a non-profit community kitchen from his home and has so far raised £22,000 via a crowdfunder campaign.

In order to qualify for the scheme, successful bidders agree to carry out repair works on their properties over a three year period.

Long-term, Danny wants to donate the house back to the town.

He said it’s worth it, and anyone considering taking advantage of the scheme should “go for it”.