Rabat – Vacant housing units in Morocco numbered over 1 million in 2014, said the High Commission for Planning (HCP).
A recent report by the HCP drew attention in particular to the “great disparity” in vacant housing between urban and rural areas.Cities are the site of 90.7 percent of vacant housing in the country, compared to only 9.3 percent in the countryside.
The rate of vacant housing reached 24.1 percent in Casablanca-Settat region, 15.9 percent in the Tangier-Tetouan-Al Hoceima region,followed by 12.7 percent in Rabat-Salé-Kénitra, 12 percent in Fez-Meknes, 9.8 percent in Marrakesh-Safi, 8 percent in Souss-Massa, and 7.5 percent in the Oriental region.
With only 4.6 percent, Beni Mellal-Khénifra region has third-lowest amount of vacant houses, followed by Draa-Tafilalet with 2.3 percent of vacant housing.
The southern regions have the lowest rate of rate of vacant houses, with less than 1.5 percent.
48.5 percent,or 478,124, of the vacant urban units are apartments. Modern Moroccan houses come second with 40.9 percent, and villas are in third position with 4.4 percent. Traditional Moroccan houses account for only 3.3 percent of vacancies nationwide.
The number of vacant apartments is clearly increasing in urban areas, rising from 144,397 units in 2004 to 478,124 in 2014. Villas are also in the same trend, rising from 16,632 to 42,942 units during the same period.
National Housing Rate in Growth
In 2014, the national housing rate amounted to 8.86 million housing units, 6.19 million of which are in urban areas (69.8 percent) and 2.68 million in rural areas (30.2 percent).
Occupied housing units accounted for 79.8 percent of national rate, vacant units for 12.2percent, and secondary and seasonal units for 8 percent.
The number of occupied units increased from 5,367,178 in 2004 to 7,071,118 in 2014, with urban housing occupancy rising from 60.1 percent to 65.4 percent.
Rural areas are characterized by the predominance of occupied housing units, with 91.3 percent units compared with 74.8 percent in urban areas.
The distribution of households by type in urban areas shows an increase in the share of modern Moroccan houses from 62.6percent in 2004 to 65 percent in 2014.
Occupied apartments rose from 12.4 percent to 17.5 percent, with Casablanca and Rabat accounting for the highest rates.
Meanwhile, the rate of traditional Moroccan house occupancy declined from 8.1 percent to 5.5 percent.
More Citizens Owning Their Houses
Between 2004 and 2014, the number of people owning their urban household units grew from 57.7 percent to 61.9 percent between 2004 and 2014, with highest rate in the Oriental regions (68.6 percent), Béni Mellal-Khénifra (64.9 percent), Draa-Tafilalet (64.6 percent), Marrakech-Safi (62.8 percent), and Fez-Meknes (62.7 percent).
The lowest shares are observed in the southern regions, ranging from 42.3 percent in Eddakhla-Oued Eddahab, to 56.1 percent in Guelmim-Oued Noun.
The largest shares of renter households are located in the Dakhla-Oued Ed Dahab at 48.6 percent, Laayoune-Sakia El Hamra at 44.1 percent, Guelmim-Oued Noun at 35.1 percent, Tangier-Tétouan-Al Hoceïma at 31.1 percent, and Souss-Massa at 30 percent.