The number one comment/question people ask when they find out we’ve moved to Morocco is,
“I/We would love to do that but I’m not sure how we can afford it/find job(s).”
Of course, when considering moving this is a major stumbling block. A little while back I wrote a post about how people afford to have a global lifestyle. This post is going to give you a lot of different ideas of how you can make an international location possible.
One of the hard realities is that most people want to leave Morocco because of it’s limited income opportunities. That being said I do think it’s more than possible to not only survive but to live a comfortable life. So how do we do it?
Before we moved to Morocco I had been working from home for a little over a year. This is one of the reasons we were able to make the decisions to move. I have a combination of freelance work that I do online which provides our means to live here. My best advice for someone considering the move is to figure out how to transfer and/or learn the skills that will allow you to work remotely. The second bit of advice is to learn at least one of the languages spoken in Morocco. A conversational and written fluency in Arabic, French, and/or Spanish depending on where you live will help you find work here. If you have training as a language teacher (English, French, Spanish etc) there are many schools that hire. Some only want you to have an undergraduate degree and fluency in the language while others require a training certificate. Research the schools in the area you are considering moving to, to see what teaching jobs are available and their requirements. One thing is for sure, you will need to get creative and think outside of the box as more traditional jobs are hard to come by.
But, how much does it really cost?
Depending on where in the country you decide to live, the costs associated will vary. Keep in mind the average salary here is between 3000-4000 dirham a month, about $400-$500. In a group I belong to online there was a recent discussion on monthly budgets. It’s possible to live on a lot less than these figures but it wouldn’t be comfortable at least not by western standards. Some of the figures given were;
- Small City – Taza – $600 month (2 people – no children)
- Large City – Casablanca – $1500 month (4 people – 2 children)
- Suburb of Casablanca – $1650 month (5 people – 3 children)
We have budgeted $1500 a month for living costs in Marrakech. Broken down this is (please note I rounded up here to make things easier);
- $250 for school/tutoring (2 kids in private French/Moroccan school) + language lessons for me
- $100 internet/cell phones – this is higher than some may have because I need the highest speed internet for work
- $100 student loan payments
- $500 housing and utilities – our price may be lower than most for this as we “rent” from my mother in law
- $250 food
- $80 house cleaned 2x a week
- $220 flex – medical/dental, clothing, gas, travel, etc.
There were many upfront costs that we did not budget for as we should have. Some of these costs included (again rounded up);
- Washing Machine – $350
- Cooktop Stove – $200
- Countertop Convection Oven – $60
- Kitchen Tools/Dishes/Silverware – $150
- Vehicle – $6000-$10,000 for a used, reliable vehicle
- Paperwork/Translations/School Fees – $250
- Living Room Furniture – $350
- Beds and Matresses/Bedroom Furniture (2 twin beds, 1 Queen Bed, bedside tables) – $500
- 32″ TV – $400
I hope this post gives you a little better idea of what things cost and how much is needed to live here. I hope to do another post on the cost of food which has increased a lot since I first came to Morocco but for the most part it’s still very affordable especially if you’re not purchasing many imported goods. If you’ve got specific questions let me know and I’ll do my best to answer them!