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Sharp increase in tenant-owner evictions

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15:46 CET+01:00
An increasing number of tenant-owner occupiers are being evicted from their properties, with a 107 cases reported in 2010 to date.

A total of 1,016 cases for eviction have been submitted to Swedish rental tribunals during the first ten months of 2010, of which 103 have come from tenant-owner associations (bostadsrättsföreningar).

"If the trend continues over the remaining two months of the year then it would mean an increase of 70 percent in comparison with 2009," said P-O Brogren at the Swedish Union of Tenants (Hyresgästföreningen) to the Metro daily.

During 2009, Swedish rent tribunals received a total of 1,026 eviction applications, of which 73 came from tenant-owner associations.

Brogren explained that one obvious explanation was that the total number had increased, but he added that "tougher attitudes from tenant-owner associations" are also a factor.

Regional rent tribunals in Sweden mediate on a number of areas of dispute relating to domestic premises and business premises.

If a dispute arises between a tenant and a landlord or between a tenant-owner association and a tenant-owner occupier, and the parties cannot themselves agree, the regional rent tribunal may mediate in the dispute.

Dispute may, for example, relate to the conditions, transfer or subletting and in some cases the tribunal would also make a decisions on certain issues, for example, the right to sublet an apartment.

The tenant-owner occupier model is the most common form of apartment ownership in Sweden. A buyer in fact acquires a share of the association, while in practice they buy the permanent ride of abode in a specific apartment within the properties formally owned by the association.

The tenant-occupier then contributes a monthly payment towards paying heating and other collective bills for the building, as well as helping to service loans taken out by the association to purchase or upkeep the building.

Grounds for eviction include non-payment of the monthly fee, repeated disturbance, or subletting without the permission of the association's board.

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