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Debts lead to more property repossessions

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09:06 CEST+02:00
The number of apartments repossessed and sold at auction by Sweden's official bailiffs has doubled in the past year. But the Swedish Enforcement Agency (Kronofogden) says the increase in foreclosures is due more to changes in the law than to a downturn in the economy.

Some 711 apartments were sold at so-called executive auctions between January and July, according to figures from magazine 'Hyra och Hem'. This compared with a figure of 363 in the same period last year.

"One of the reasons is that we have become more effective, as new legislation at the beginning of the year gave us new possibilities," said Alena Koren at the Swedish Enforcement Agency.

Koren said that the economic downturn could also have contributed to the new figures, as people find it harder to make repayments. But she added that the new regulations were behind most of the rise.

Under the new rules, the agency no longer distinguishes between debts to the state and debts to private creditors.

"There is now just one type of investigation and we have found this year that many debtors have assets other than their wages, such as apartments, bank deposits or cars," she said.

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