Morocco attracts wealthy buyers

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Whilst the effects of the Arab Spring have reverberated around the Middle East and North African economies, the situation in Morocco seems to be bucking the general negative trends when it comes to tourism and second homes.

According to a new report, wealthy overseas property investors are being attracted to the country, which is seeing an increase in domestic buyer activity too.

The report from Aylesford International points out that the last ten years have seen a stabilisation of the country’s economy that has led to economic growth, improved social indicators and an expanding domestic middle class.

The research also highlights the importance of the expat community in Morocco, where French and British residents in particular are traditionally attracted to Morocco’s moderate property transaction costs and supply of high end luxury properties.

Morocco introduced a new constitution in July 2011 and the reforms meant that it avoided the worst of the social unrest experienced by its neighbours. The benefits of these actions meant that the tourism industry, which is an important part of the country’s macroeconomic structure, actually expanded.

According to Wealth-X, who provide qualified prospects and intelligence on ultra high net worth (UHNW) individuals, there are now 35 people in Morocco who have a total wealth of US$5 billion and look to property in the country as an investment.

When buying and selling property in Morocco, there is a land registration fee of 3% to 4%, land registry tax of 1%, an agent commission of 2.5%, a Notary fee of 1% plus VAT at 10% and a Notarial tax of 0.5%.

Selling a property incurs no inheritance tax but ‘gift tax’ may be levied at a flat rate of 20%, and Capital Gains Tax applies to the sale profits at a 20% rate unless it has been the owner’s principal residence for six years.

If you are looking to invest in Morocco make sure you compare the currency market to ensure you get the best deal when it comes to transferring money abroad.

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