I first came to Cortona as a student in 1981 and fell in love with the town, the people and the Italian way of life. In 1982 I began a career as a journalist in London, but after a number of years decided that neither journalism or city life was for me.
When I first moved to Cortona in 1987, I taught English working for private language schools and local high schools. Following this, I taught English literature and current affairs in an American school in Arezzo. When the school closed in the mid-90’s I was introduced to the real estate business and discovered my niche.
I acquired experience and training with one of the first estate agencies in the world to market properties on-line, learning as much about computers as I did about property and restorations.
I set up HelpWorksItalia (HWI) in 2006 in order to fill the desperate demand from Cortona’s international community for a property management company. My intention for HWI was to help, not hinder which is why I offer straightforward services at realistic, affordable prices.
I provide practical and inexpensive caretaking solutions on the basis of an annual retainer fee. This includes the use of a client dedicated account for paying bills and bi-annual taxes In your absence I ensure that:
Should problems arise, they are dealt with.
Having been married for 20 years to Mario, a hands-on-builder, who speaks English fluently, I have acquired by default an exceptional team of people to work with (builders, carpenters, electricians, plumbers, decorators etc…).
With the professional expertise of my longstanding and efficient geometra (surveyor), I can organise permissions for small or large building jobs and see works through to their completion.
I also provide regular updates and photographs and can organise payment to the various contractors via the HWI client account.
Most importantly perhaps, this team of professionals I work with are always available to me for small jobs and especially emergencies.
This is an essential service which as a property manager enables me to provide assistance quickly and with little or no frustration!
I am bilingual Italian-American living in Cortona. Thanks to my bi-cultural upbringing, I am fluent in both Italian and English. After being born and raised in Italy, I moved to the United States and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
Since moving back to Cortona after university, I have worked in the restaurant and hospitality businesses, with educational/recreational associations, as an occasional translator/interpreter and private English teacher, and more recently in property management and holiday rental management.
I am most passionate about the arts, children, food & wine, travel, and the social and cultural exchange between people of diverse backgrounds.
The holiday rental/property management business allows me the great fortune of working alongside people from all over the world and sharing my passion and knowledge for Cortona with new and returning visitors.
- I create the listing to advertise your property for holiday rentals on various established online platforms on the basis of which is most appropriate for your type of property. This includes writing the description, establishing the conditions of the rental, taking photographs, setting the price, updating the calendar as needed, and writing a guide for the house and local area for the guests to refer to during their stay.
- I allow for as little or as much involvement on your part as the owner of the property; I strive to maintain your peace of mind.
- I evaluate your property as it is and determine what is needed on a practical level in order for the rentals to take place. If items need to be purchased I can either prepare a detailed list for your convenience or be in charge of the purchases and the set up.
- With the assistance of a highly professional and responsive team of plumbers, carpenters, electricians, builders, etc…, I attend to any work that needs to be done in preparation for a rental.
In case of emergencies that may occur during a rental period, I make sure the problem gets solved quickly so that a guest’s stay isn’t disrupted.
- I ensure that guests know I am available at any time should they have any questions or issues. I maintain a personal and friendly contact with them before their arrival and during their holiday. I like to help acclimatize guests to the area by recommending restaurants, tour guides, shops, services, etc.
- I acquire on your behalf the legal authorization for renting from the local government and regularly update myself on the tax laws your property is subject to. I follow the legal requirements for renting: collecting the visitors’ tax from guests at check-in and communicating their presence to the Questura (Italian police) when they arrive via an online platform specifically set up for this purpose.
- I manage the bookings, communicate with guests before their arrival and I check them in. Immediately after their departure I ensure that no damage has been done to the property.
- I ensure the property is cleaned thoroughly and up to standard for each guest’s arrival.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me for quotes or additional information. I am available for a meeting and/or a conversation.