Building a villa in Marrakech

How to build a villa in Marrakech

Building a villa in Marrakech is a high-profile real estate project of choice that should be undertaken carefully. Before embarking on such a project, it is important to weigh the pros as well as the cons, and take into account every single stage all the way through to final delivery! We offer some tips to start you on your journey and better understand the challenges of your project.

Start your under-the-sun project!

In Marrakech as elsewhere, building a house or a villa is no bed of roses. Constant presence is required to monitor the progress of work and administrative procedures to ensure your project is completed on budget and on time. One of the most difficult stages of your project is to find a building plot matching your exact specifications. Most land still available is about 15 or 20 kilometres away from the Red City. Plots in the city centre are overpriced, often noisy or surrounded by buildings. Prefer the relaxing countryside to host the home of your dreams.

Real estate and construction industry professionals agree that the average time it takes to build a villa in Marrakech is about eight months (8 months), barring unforeseen, serious problems that may delay the project. The concrete structure generally takes about 3 or 4 months to 6 depending on the size, it is the easiest part of your construction. Once the structural work is finished, time to dress it: You should know that the secondary work represents around 40% of the final bill. Costs may mount depending on the materials you choose, the decoration ... All the little extras drive up costs. Make the right choices at the right time to stay within your budget and timeframe.

What are the administrative steps?

Your efforts begin immediately after the final acquisition of the land. You must provide your certificate of ownership to contractors you have selected. They will submit your file to the Marrakech building regulators (Agence Urbaine de Marrakech) to learn about the nature of the terrain, the type of construction allowed but also the Floor Area Ratio or Plan d'Occupation des Sols (POS) in French. Even if you are the owner, you are restricted in what you can build! After receiving the note from the building regulator, a surveyor (topographe in French) will delineate the boundaries of your building, an architect will develop the plan of the house and the design office you’ve chosen will draw up the concrete house plans. Other authorisations such as electricity and water will be also required.

Compliance with local regulation requires patience and solid organisation in Marrakech. Take your time and make the right decisions.

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