Kev just gave me a nudge to pop over to the thread, to see if i couldn't help ease your wallet open for another alfa.
I have 2 that would fit your budget, first is actually my dads runaround, a silver 156 2.5 v6, 6 speed, navy leather, just had back brakes, air flow meter, probably ready for a service to be fussy but everything working, just had it on my FES for a fault and parameters check, all spot on, just mot'd last week, stainless exhaust that sounds the mutts, done about 80k if i recall, and just put a set of 16" spider alloys with new 205's all round.
better on juice than a TS 156 all day long, don't be fooled, ive had 3, and i think you'll find some other owners would concurr.
the other one is my 145 cloverleaf 2.0 ts, which ive only just bought, but without knowing what i was going to use it for anyway, such is the way when something comes up eh!
its red, pink, purple, you name it, its got it!
yes it needs painting to be properly pretty, but it is still a solid car, couple of crease area's that would want a skim before painting but don't be too put off, i wasn't!
she's quick, very responsive CF1 motor, sounds as if the variator could probably do with a rebuild or replace but cheap enough, and i think the cold start sensor is dead, but sweet strong motor, done about 90 i think.
i think i was going to use it as a practice for when i hopefully paint my 33 myself, or possibly even a track day car to hoon about with, but i really haven't done anything since driving it back, not even got the v5 through yet!
both cars are just visible in the picture below, and are just 6miles north of newark, just off the A1 so dead easy to get to for a quick shufty if you fancy it, just holla
(pm box full, don't use)
cheers, happy hunting