Legrad, Croatia: A little town in northern Croatia is giving away its abandoned houses at unbelievably cheap rates just so that it can bring back the lost population over the years. According to a Reuters report, the town has started selling houses for one kuna, approximately Rs 12 (Rs 11.83), in a bid to attract new customers to the area. However, the bumper offer comes with a set of crucial terms and conditions that one must look into before jumping to any conclusions. Here are the details.Also Read - International Travel All Set to Resume For Vaccinated Tourists, Singapore And Malaysia Still Hesitant

Legrad, a town in northern Croatia spread over 62.62 sq km area, used to be the second-biggest population centre in the Croatian territory. However, it suffered a steady decline ever since the disintegration of the Austro-Hungarian Empire a century ago when new borders left it sidelined. “We turned into a border town with few transport connections to other places. Since then the population has been gradually falling,” said Ivan Sabolic, the town’s mayor. Also Read - Euro 2020: Raheem Sterling Strikes as England Beat Gutsy Croatia to Start Campaign on High

Where is the town situated?

Legrad located north of Koprivnica and east of Ludbreg in the Koprivnica–Križevci County. The town shares its closest border with Hungary and has 2,241 inhabitants in the municipality. Also Read - Luka Modric Signs One-Year Contract Extension With Real Madrid

Why did the population disappear from Legrad?

A favourable geographical position had made Legrad a chartered market town in the late 15th century and the population grew rapidly till the 19th century. However, as soon as the Austro-Hungarian Empire fell down, people started leaving the town as it was left sidelined.

So far, the town has been able to sell 17 properties. As these houses, in various dilapidated states, would require repairs, the municipality said it will pay 25,000 kuna (almost Rs 3 lakh) towards any refurbishments needed. At the same time, for new residents who are looking to buy a privately-owned home, the town will cover 20 per cent of the price up to 35,000 kuna, the mayor said.

What are the conditions?

The catch at buying houses in this Croatian town is,

  1. Individuals or couples who want to buy a house in Legrad must be under the age of 40 and financially solvent.
  2. They will have to commit to staying in Legrad for at least 15 years.
  3. Immigration is complex in Croatia, but the town will offer newcomers employment opportunities in food production, wood processing and metal processing industries.

“It is much nicer to live in your own place than to be a tenant. Staying 15 years here is not a problem for us, we don’t plan to move,” the mayor said.