MARINALEDA: Moving and Going to Live in Andalusia

Who I am
Joel Fulleda

Author and references

in periods of severe crisis, national policies, as well as local communities, try in every way to find the strength for revive the entire population.
If in Italy the work of political leaders raises criticism from the opposition on the consequences of economic maneuvers, in Spain, precisely in the autonomous community ofAndalusia, there is a a little town where all citizens work earning one fixed salary which allows them to support their families, a small village where there is no unemployment and of politicians do not receive any compensation to exercise their institutional position ... A company based on the solidarity, on the generosity and on the collective spirit where each member is committed to keeping the streets tidy and clean. Utopia? No, we're talking about Marinaleda: the dream of the earth.


  1. How do you live in Marinaleda?
  2. Rentals in Marinaleda? The price of the houses is 15 euros per month!
  3. How to move to the Andalusian city?
  4. Juan Manuel Sánchez Gordillo: the mayor of the town
  5. User questions and comments

How do you live in Marinaleda?

  • Number of Inhabitants: 2.645 (2014 census)
  • Altitude: 205 meters above sea level
  • Distance from the sea: about 130/140 Km (Malaga is 2 hours by car)
  • Cost of living: on average € 400/500 per family per month
  • Salary per worker: € 47,00 per day - € 1.128,00 per month (regardless of the work done)
  • Number of unemployed: About 130 people

In the small village inhabited by just under 2.700 souls, the entire economic and social system is based on equality between people and on sharing of resources. The basic idea in itself is not really far from the intentions of Marxist socialism, but what is most surprising is that this system seems to have been implemented, for the first time in history, in an efficient and functional way, in full respect for democracy e of human rights (this is the main novelty ...).

All the inhabitants work six hours a day, six days a week, perceiving one daily salary of € 47,00. Most live on rural agriculture and transformation of raw materials, working for the agricultural cooperative that exports products throughout Europe (including Italy). Others take care of public tasks at local administrative offices and schools, or even run small local shops.
In Marinaleda there is a modern sports center, a recreation area for retirees, a large cultural center, a football field and a swimming pool (which costs just 3 euros for the whole summer season), and home services are also available for the elderly. and the needy and in addition alternative media information is guaranteed through local radio and TV.
The health, civil and school facilities are modern and well maintained.
Among all theasylum; open from 7:00 to 16:00 costa € 12,00 per month for each child (with daily breakfast and lunch included).
All this is possible thanks to a thrifty and intelligent use of social funds.
For example a few years ago the city council decided to abolish the police force, a solution that allows financial savings of approximately € 260.000 per year.
Monthly there are the so-called "red Sundays", days in which the whole population is dedicated to maintenance of roads and public parks.

Rentals in Marinaleda? The price of the houses is 15 euros per month!

Through some state and regional subsidies, the Mayor was able to propose a unique formula for the distribution of housing: every citizen can buy an apartment by paying an advance of € 15,00 per month, as long as it contributes to the construction of the same.
After the construction of the building, the citizen undertakes to repay the price of the material used for the construction, covering a monthly fee of about € 15,00 or a little more. The law also provides that a document must be signed certifying the "unsaleable" of the property for the future (in this way any form of speculation is avoided).

How to move to the Andalusian city?

It is natural that in economically dark times like the present, many people seriously consider the possibility of go and live in Marinaleda. Unfortunately, it is not clear what the position of Mayor Gordillo is regarding the possible inclusion of new citizens within their "perfect system".
The economy of Marinaleda is based on self-sufficiency and understandably the mayor intends to preserve this system as much as possible.
Certainly, the waiting list to go to live in the city is quite long, also considering the poor economic conditions of the Spanish state.
A good way to increase the chances of an application being accepted could be showing up with one large amount to be invested as a grant in the cooperative which is the economic and working engine of the country.

Requirements required:

  • Good attitude to work
  • Predisposition to activism and social commitment
  • Economic availability to invest in the municipal cooperative

Unfortunately it seems that it is not easy contact municipal officials. So far, very few have been able to obtain comforting information about the transfer possibilities via email or telephone.
On the contrary, several journalists who personally interviewed the Mayor testify to his extreme willingness to provide direct information on the reality created by the Izquierda Unida movement.

Tips for moving to Marinaleda:

  • Confront other people who want to live in the municipality (Here is an interesting FB page)
  • Visit the contact section of the official website and get numbers and address of the municipal offices
  • Organize one visit of the village to explore the real possibilities of transfer
  • Know personally the mayor of Gordillo and demonstrate that it can become an added value for the community.

Here is a very interesting article in which the economic miracle of Marinaleda is presented:

Juan Manuel Sánchez Gordillo: the mayor of the town

It has now been 30 years since Izquierda Unida, a left-wing Communist party, won the municipal elections, placing itself at the head of the country.
The main reference figure, as well as the founder of the same political movement, is Juan Manuel Sanchez Gordillo: today mayor of Marinaleda. Activist, trade unionist and history professor, he is the author of this "utopian dream" that has become a reality.

Housing prices so low, the minimum unemployment rate, as well as the good quality of life of citizens, have enabled Marinaleda to acquire considerable popularity, not only in Spain, but throughout the world, making it an excellent example of radical-socialist politics: yet another proof of how fundamental it can be not only to involve the masses, but to make them cooperate by creating a strong collective consciousness.

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