Rent to Buy Tax regime is regulated by the Italian Revenue Agency Circolare 4/E 19.02.2015 (Agenzia delle Entrate).
This legal source clearly states transfer tax will be partially anticipated at the moment the Buyer will sign the Rent to Buy agreement and the balance at the moment of the Deed of Sale (Rogito), meaning when the purchase will be completed.
For what concerns the monthly “usage” rate of the property, the Rental Tax Law will apply as 2% Register Tax on the related amount (if the seller is a physical person); On the other hand if the seller decides to pay his rental income tax choosing the Flat Tax option (Cedolare secca), then the buyer won’t be charged with the 2% Register tax.
Referring on the sale-price rate, 3% Register Tax will be charged at the moment of the Rent to Buy subscription in front of the Notary (Same regulation of the Preliminary Agreement).
The 3% Register Tax can be compensated (so recovered) from the transfer tax (2% in principal residence or 9 % if second home) at the moment of the Rogito.
If the seller is a company (juridical person) VAT regime will apply both for the monthly usage rate and sale-price rate.
Long Rent to Buy represents a very flexible and convenient solution to postpone, pay partially or skip the payment of a significant part of the taxes; in fact the buyer will always have the chance to hand over the property and skip the taxes on the Rogito.
Furthermore Long Rent to Buy guarantees another not minor advantage: signing the contract means also you’ll “reserve that property for a fix and not variable price; considering the last 9 years of recession of the real estate market, it’d be more than concrete the opportunity to have a considerable property value appreciation.
On the other hand it’d be realistic the scenario for some buyers to elect their residence in Italy within 10 years from signing the Long Rent to Buy Agreement, so transfer the property as “Prima casa” with a remarkable saving on transfer tax.