Inspired by remote Italian villages that lure newcomers by offering old houses for only one euro, a Luxembourgish village is following suit by offering old houses for only one million euros.
“All of our young people are moving away to big cities like Wiltz and Clervaux,” said Scheidhofdange’s elderly 56-year-old mayor Claude Hessler. “We’re afraid of becoming a ghost town, a place where the only people are agoraphobes, senior citizens, and women named Yvette who know how to milk a cow and fix a Harley.”
Matt Dawson was among the first to take up the offer. He describes his new house in Scheidhofdange as a “fixer-upper” because it’s missing a wall on one side.
“Which is okay because the other three walls are solid, and I’m sure I’ll find a way to repair the gaping hole in the roof and get rid of the mysterious yellow mold that seems to induce hallucinations when you inhale the spores.”
While some people might consider buying a one-million-euro home as an investment or a place to stash the weird erortic art they painted in their 20s and now want to hide from their children, they should be aware that the offer comes with a few strings attached.
“If you’re male, you’ll have to change your name to Guy and wear a mullet,” Hessler said. “And if you speak Luxembourgish, you’ll need to adopt the dialect of the north and speak with a proper northern accent.”
“We don’t want our tongue tainted by the weird French-infused garble from the south of the country.”
Also, while some of the houses come with enormous parcels of land, even if you have dozens of extra acres, you cannot sell any of it, even if tempted by rising land values, Hessler says.
“Like everyone who owns vast tracts of unused land here, you’ll have to get used to staring at it, knowing it will be worth five or ten times more in just a few years.”