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Foreign buyers snapping up Swedish homes

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Foreign buyers snapping up Swedish homes
14:57 CET+01:00
Foreign ownership of Swedish summer houses, houses, land and farms has increased by 36 percent over the past five years, new statistics from the Swedish land registration authority (Lantmäteriet) show.

The Lantmäteriet figures show that almost 80,000 Swedish properties are now owned by foreigners.

"They want to have some peace and quiet and be close to the Swedish nature," said Christer Stjernfeldt at a property firm in Älmhult in southern Sweden that specialises in selling properties to foreigners.

The Danes are the group of people leading the list, owning 22,000 Swedish properties, followed by the Germans with 18,700, Norwegians 16,100, the USA 4,300 and Britain 3,700.

The greatest increase over the past five years is however accounted for by the Dutch, with an increase of 72 percent to 2,600.

"The Danes love old red houses with tiled and wood-fired stoves. The Germans buy more modern houses in the outskirts of a village."

Stjernfeldt's description corresponds with the statistics produced by Lantmäteriet on behalf of the TT news agency.

According to this report, foreign ownership has increased by 36 percent since 2006 to 79,000 properties owned by people living in other countries (which includes emigrated Swedes).

The list is dominated by summer houses, but also includes detached houses, farm properties and plots of land.

"The Dutch, for example, who live in Europe's most densely populated country, it is here that they can find the vast expanses," said Henrik Roos, a property analyst at Lantmäteriet.

Roos predicted that foreign ownership will continue to increase with the longer term strength of the Danish and Norwegian currencies cited as explanatory factors - even if the Swedish krona has rebounded somewhat over the past year.

He added that the range of properties on offer in Sweden are also a significant factor behind the increasing popularity - from farms to boat houses and tenement soldier's cottages, as well as the landscape.

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