In Sweden, the forms of tenure include the right to rent, the tenant-owner right and the right of ownership. In addition, there is a cooperative right to rent, which is used to a lesser extent. A large part of the housing production focuses on tenant-owner and the right to rent in multi-unit dwellings.
Forms of tenure
Almost all ownership rights are in single-family houses. It was not possible to build ownership apartments in multi-family houses until 2009. These represent only about 0.5 percent of the housing production.
A tenant-owner right means that the tenant is a member of a tenant-owner association, which owns a property with apartments where each member has his or her own apartment. The tenant-owner right includes both a right of use of the apartment and a proportional right in the association. A tenant-owner right can normally be sold in the open housing market, but the buyer must be approved by the association.
About half of Sweden's rental rights are owned by municipal public housing companies. They are usually the largest owner of the local market. Publicly-owned companies shall conduct business in accordance with commercial principles. SABO is the national organisation for the municipal public housing companies.
Most of the housing rents in Sweden are set by collective negotiations between landlords and a tenant organisation, usually the tenant association. The rents in the existing stock tend to be below the market rent at least in attractive areas, whereas rents in new production are often market-oriented.
Cooperative rental right
A cooperative rental right is something in between a rental right and tenant-owner right. An association owns – or rents – a property and association members rent their apartments from the association. Upon moving in, some form of deposit is paid to the association, which is refunded when moving out. Accordingly, the apartment cannot be sold, but it is returned to the association when the member moves out.
Statistics on the Swedish construction and housing market
Population increased more than the number of homes
Sweden's population has grown at a high rate since 2006. In 2008-2017, the number of residents increased by nearly 940,000 people. The population is expected to continue growing rapidly. Metropolitan areas and larger municipalities have seen the largest growth, but most of Sweden's 290 municipalities have had an increase in population in the past few years.
Number of homes completed and entering construction
For a long time, homes have not been built at the same rate as the population growth. The Swedish National Board of Housing, Building and Planning, Boverket, continuously assesses the need for housing, for example how many homes need to be built to meet the expected population growth. This assessment does not, however, cover how large the demand is. The current assessment is available on the Boverket website.
Statistics Sweden presents statistics for how many homes were completed and for how many homes construction have begun. Here, information is also available on, among other things, rents, construction prices and homes that have not been rented.
Estate agent statistics present average prices for housing in every municipality. Statistics are available for single-family homes and tenant-owner apartments.
There are private initiatives giving courses for foreign actors who want to learn more about the Swedish construction and housing market.
Search for "courses about the Swedish construction industry" in your browser.
For further information, please contact Boverket.