• Sweden edition
 
'Dodgy' flat rental dogs Moderates' Arkelsten

'Dodgy' flat rental dogs Moderates' Arkelsten

Published: 29 Oct 2010 13:16 GMT+02:00
Updated: 29 Oct 2010 13:16 GMT+02:00

The Moderates’ party secretary, Sofia Arkelsten, was fending off new criticism on Friday after it was revealed she secured a first-hand rental contract from Stockholm’s “king” of black market flat rentals.

Arkelsten decided to move out of her parents’ house and into an apartment with her boyfriend in April 2000, the Aftonbladet newspaper reports.

But rather than face the years-long wait normally required to obtain a first-hand rental contract, Arkelsten and her boyfriend found a new home almost immediately on popular Södermalm, south of central Stockholm.

The landlord of the building was Peder Dahlborg, who two years later was the subject of a report by the Sveriges Television (SVT) investigative news programme Uppdrag Granskning looking at black market rentals in Stockholm

According to the programme, Dahlborg built a real estate business around buying buildings of rental apartments and evicting as many tenants as possible. He would then renovate the buildings, raise the rents, and sell contracts to the flats on the black market.

Arkelsten claimed she obtained her contract properly, although she admitted that it was unusual for someone to get an apartment in such a sought-after part of Stockholm so quickly.

“I didn’t make any black market payments,” she told the newspaper.

“I got it through a friend of the family and heard that there was a landlord who was looking for easy-going tenants.”

Arkelsten was unable to elaborate on what sort of relationship her family friend may have had with Dahlborg.

In 2005, Arkelsten and her boyfriend bought a tenant-owner apartment (bostadsrätt) in Årsta south of Stockholm. As part of the transaction, the seller took over the rental contract for Arkelsten’s flat on Södermalm.

The housing scandal is the latest in a string of revelations which have kept Arkelsten on the defensive since reports surfaced on Wednesday that she accepted a sponsored trip to the south of France at the invitation of Dutch oil company Shell.

She also came under fire for holding a position on the board of environmental consultancy Sweco, a post which she has since resigned.

According to SVT, roughly one third of Riksdag members also sit on the boards of publicly traded companies.

Speaking to SVT on Thursday night, Arkelsten she has no plans to resign her post.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

14:43 October 29, 2010 by eZee.se
I don't get it,

So we have another sleazebag politician, just because this one has female genitalia rather than male... are we really supposed to be surprised?
14:58 October 29, 2010 by jamtlandtom
Hang on a minute is this Lady really a sleazebag?

I am intrigued to know who is pushing these allegations and even more so why??
14:58 October 29, 2010 by Rishonim
Alright, alright already. This witch hunt is becoming ridiculous. I really don't know one person living in Sthlm who hasn't purchased a first rental contract.
17:06 October 29, 2010 by engagebrain
The whole rental market in Stockholm is deeply corrupt, why are non the major political parties prepared to do something ?

Its the usual question, who would gain from an honest system and who would lose. Almost everyone would gain - so why doesn't it happen ?
18:52 October 29, 2010 by Nemesis
Here is a question.

What percentage of renters of a rental apartments in Stockholm with first hand contracts are not pulling a scam?

The whole system in Stockholm is one massive scam from top to bottom.
19:19 October 29, 2010 by nilwik
Finally we got a face of the Swedish corruption, and it's ugly!

Political career in two simple steps:

1.) Talk sweet to common people to fool them that you actually are about them.

2.) Try to make it hard to see where your nose end and you boss ass start.
19:30 October 29, 2010 by miss79
yep swedish politics are getting very very ugly...congrats!
19:47 October 29, 2010 by mojofat
Maybe that anyone has to wait "years" to get an apartment is the problem, not that she did what she needed to do to put a roof over her head. Housing should be deregulated, it's not helping anybody the way it is right now except profiteers who are exploiting the situation.
10:24 October 30, 2010 by salalah
Poor Sofia, she looks like she had a few sleepless nights...
12:28 October 30, 2010 by Tennin
She did what most swedes would do, if they had the chance to pass the que for an apartment. The waiting times are ridiculous here. It doesn't make sense why it takes a couple of years or 10 years to get an apartment.
18:24 October 30, 2010 by Toonie
As many of you say, Arkelsten just did what many do. I experienced this form of corruption as a test of one's ability to adjust to a new culture. My Swedish friends regarded others with approval (or not) according to their success at 'working the system'. Therefore a man who could acquire a flat in the inner city - by purchase, charming/blagging a housing official, or paying under the table - clearly had 'good genes'. Anyone with scruples could be declared 'honourable' in public, but get marked down as a bit of a wimp in private. It's embedded in the social culture of Stockholm, and possibly other cities/towns. What is really annoying is that no govt/authority/newspaper will attack to issue as a whole. Instead they use individual cases to pursue particular agendas. That is also hypocritical.
19:32 October 30, 2010 by Argentina84
I wonder what else they are going to find out about this lady. She seems to have no idea of how to do the square thing in Sweden. Can anyone help her? :P
19:45 October 30, 2010 by maxbrando
Ah yes, filthy capitalism at work even in Sweden! Why am I not surprised. Trying to make your life better in any way MUST be against the law in Sweden, no?
20:06 October 31, 2010 by comrade Kev
@Toonie spot on comment wait 10 years or .........? its a no brainer, my crazy solution get building apartments lots of them vastly increased supply leads to Buy To Let scamsters been done in excellent comrades.
Today's headlines
'Baffling' Swedish raid on German sub makers
The Kockums Malmö shipyard and FMV headquarters. Files: TT

'Baffling' Swedish raid on German sub makers

After the Swedish military raided the Malmö premises of German defence giant Thyssen Krupp, a military expert tells The Local why recent Russian aggression means Sweden's Saab needs to take control of national submarine production. READ () »

Swedish kids crack adult content 'code' at school
A child, unrelated to the story, on her computer. File photo: TT

Swedish kids crack adult content 'code' at school

Swedish parents who busted their children looking at adult content online were shocked to find the kids saying 'they'd learned the code at school'. READ () »

Industry bellwether SKF recovers to turn profit
A file image of ballbearings. Photo: Shutterstock

Industry bellwether SKF recovers to turn profit

After a drab end to 2013, Swedish ballbearing makers SKF anew posted a profit in its first quarter review. It could spell good news for the manufacturing industry worldwide. READ () »

Swedish Hobbit actor jailed in cocaine case
Swedish actor Mikael Persbrandt. File photo: TT

Swedish Hobbit actor jailed in cocaine case

Swedish actor Mikael Persbrandt has appealed a five-month prison sentence, handed down on Tuesday after he was found guilty of buying cocaine. READ () »

Property of the Week
In Pictures: The Local's Property of the Week
The property in Skinskatteberg. Photo: Fastighetsbyrån

In Pictures: The Local's Property of the Week

The Swedish countryside is littered with small second homes, many up for a steal if you can see beyond dated wallpaper and imagine a country retreat with chanterelles and lingonberries growing in your backyard. READ () »

Puppies lost in 'black market' chihuahua raid
A chihuahua papillon crossbreed puppy. File photo: Shutterstock

Puppies lost in 'black market' chihuahua raid

Thieves escaped from a flat in Malmö on Monday with jewellery, electronics, and four chihuahua-papillon puppies. Police worry the dogs will be sold on the black market, a growing trend in Sweden. READ () »

JobTalk Sweden
Sweden's worst office clichés revealed

Sweden's worst office clichés revealed

"We have to hit the brakes and the gas at the same time." Does your Swedish boss confuse you? You're not alone. Swedes have crowned that phrase as the worst workplace cliché of the year. READ () »

More Swedes want to join Nato

More Swedes want to join Nato

Almost one in three Swedes support joining Nato, compared with just 17 percent in 2013, a survey revealed on Tuesday. The sentiment was echoed by the Finnish Prime Minister. READ () »

Elections 2014
Is the PM overstaying his welcome?
Kinberg Batra (L) next to the prime minister. File photo: TT

Is the PM overstaying his welcome?

Seen both as a statesman and a normal guy, Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt has a solid standing, despite his government's poor poll ratings. But have the Moderates prepared for life post-Reinfeldt? And does his successor matter to the voters? READ () »

Op-Ed
'Six-hour work day will hurt Sweden'

'Six-hour work day will hurt Sweden'

The six hour workday would punish employers who already struggle to find competent staff. And if parts of the economy slow down, so will industries reliant on them, argues liberal commentator Nima Sanandaji. READ () »

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Politics
Who's the prime minister's heir?
Alfie Atkins
Society
Are children's books the key to families integrating in Sweden?
National
'Sweden Dem protests cater to party's martyr image'
National
'Swedish research grants were fantastic, but now it's like Australia'
Society
Only in Sweden: The ten problems you'd never encounter elsewhere
National
Swedes stopped to take my picture, but didn't look me in the eyes
Business & Money
A swipe of the hand replaced cash and cards in Lund
YouTube
Features
Video: Oliver Gee finds out how to embrace The Swedish Hug
TT
National
Abba duo hints at reunion
Private
National
Flash mobs hug it out across Sweden
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching April 11-13
TT
Politics
Swedes to give six-hour workday a go
Advertisement:
TT
Society
Aussie choir member wows Abba in Sweden
YouTube
Society
Stockholm magic a surprise YouTube hit
Fastighetsbyrån
Society
Gallery: The Local's Property of the Week
Private
Society
Swedes find 200-year-old gravestone in living room
Stockholm School of Economics
Sponsored Article
Why a bachelor's degree is no longer enough
Deepti Vashisht
Features
Deepti Vashisht dissects the magic of Sweden's personal ID number
Shutterstock
Society
Ten signs you've been in Sweden too long
Society
Jimi Fritze heard every word when doctors discussed taking his organs
Society
A Swedish farmer explains why the new bestiality ban is 'pointless'
Society
'Blondes have more brains': Swedish study
TT
Society
VIDEO: Leaked 'Save Slussen' film goes viral
finest.se
Gallery
People-watching, March 28-30
ESL
Sponsored Article
Learning Swedish the easy way
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Blog Update: The Diplomatic Dispatch

28 October 15:16

The Green Growth Group Summit »

"Today on the 28 October in Brussels, a large group of key EU Ministers and business people, including UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey, and Swedish Environment Minister Lena Ek, will meet to discuss green growth. They all have a stake in resolving a challenge which, although it is crucial..." READ »

721
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com