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Swedish housing market continues to slide

Swedish housing market continues to slide

Published: 16 Aug 2011 12:59 GMT+02:00
Updated: 16 Aug 2011 12:59 GMT+02:00

Despite this marking the fourth month in a row that flat prices have fallen in Sweden, Claudia Wörman of the Association of Swedish Real Estate Agents (Mäklarsamfundet) says that it's too early to be concerned.

“I’d be more worried if there weren’t any buyer interest but I am assured that there is,” said Claudia Wörman, head of analysis at the association to The Local.

While the statistics indicated a downward trend nationwide, in some areas, home prices continue to edge up.

Apartments in central and greater Stockholm, for example, rose by 2 percent in July following two months of declines.

Apartments in central and greater Malmö also rose in July by 3 and 5 percent, respectively, while prices in central Gothenburg rose by 1 percent.

Wörman explained that there has been a definite change in the market, but whether this is a temporary dip or something more long term is too soon to say.

“We are monitoring the situation closely, especially the developments over August and September,” she said.

According to Wörman, there are many reasons behind the falling prices. And the property market is all about psychology, she told The Local.

“Even if we have a relatively stable economy here in Sweden the crises in Greece and in the US will have an effect on us as well, not in the least because it creates a feeling of insecurity,” said Wörman.

Another contributing factor is the 85 percent mortgage ceiling, introduced last year, which has had an affect on the market.

However, Wörman doesn’t think that the downward trend will necessarily continue to dominate the market.

“Unless we have a massive rise in unemployment I find it hard to believe we are going to see a significant slump. This is the nature of the housing market – it fluctuates. We are pretty well off here in Sweden, ” she told The Local.

Rebecca Martin (rebecca.martin@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

21:45 August 17, 2011 by swedejane
"We are pretty well off here in Sweden,"

Hmm...this is the part of the movie where they would cue the disastrous fall of the economy. Sweden isn't completely removed from the global economy...and as Europe's economy, and the U.S. economy, goes, so does Sweden's. We've seen this story, and it seems like lots of home owners are making interest only payments right now and not building equity in their homes. As construction slows, manufacturing slows (hello, Saab?), and exports slow, it will show up in the unemployment number.

I hope not though, but I'm not so dumb to say something like Wörman has.
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