‘Record number’ of homes for sale in Sweden

The number of houses and apartments for sale in Sweden is nearing record highs, according to a Swedish real estate listing service.

'Record number' of homes for sale in Sweden

Ever since June, the number of real estate listings in Sweden has been above normal, figures from online listing service Bovision.

The number of detached homes for sale has been 26 percent higher than during 2010, while the number of tenant-owner apartments (bostadsrätter) on the market has been 20 percent higher compared to last year.

As 2011 comes to a close, there are still an extraordinarily high number of homes for sale.

“The record high inventory doesn’t seem to be letting up,” Bovision CEO Ulf Magnusson said in a statement.

“The record inventory combined with reports of lower prices has us seeing more of a buyers market for homes compared to what we’re used to.”

While inventories of detached homes and apartments are somewhat lower in December compared to November, in line with regular trends, there are 55 percent more houses and 44 percent more apartments for sale today compared to figures from December 2010, according to Bovision’s figures.

And the large number of listings isn’t due to the fact that homes are sitting unsold for longer periods of time.

In reality, it’s taking less time on average for homeowners to sell their properties. In December 2010, it took an average of 131 days to sell a detached house, compared to only 111 days this year, while flats are selling in 84 days, compared with 88 days in 2010.

Currently, there are 16,198 houses and 12,026 apartments for sale in Sweden.

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City flat prices hit all-time high in Sweden

The cost of buying an apartment is at an all-time high and while demand continues to rise, there are fewer options on the market for home buyers.

City flat prices hit all-time high in Sweden

Prices for tenant-owned apartments (bostadsrätter) rose by 3 percent in three months, but the price for single-family houses (villor) has remained stable for some time, according to fresh figures from Swedish real estate statistics firm Mäklarstatistik.

Prices are particularly high in Stockholm and Gothenburg, Sweden’s two biggest cities, while Malmö, the country’s third largest city, is more affordable.

The average price for a tenant-owned apartment in central Stockholm is now 62,000 kronor ($9,600) per square metre. In central Gothenburg, the price is nearly 39,000 kronor and in central Malmö, the average is around 20,000 kronor.

“It is three times cheaper to buy a home in Malmö than in Stockholm,” Lars-Erik Nykvist, CEO of Swedbank-owned broker Fastighetsbyrån, told news agency TT.

Nykvist said that home prices in Sweden are now at an “all-time high”.

The prices in Malmö have been affected by the decline in housing prices in neighbouring Denmark as well as by the fact that more homes are being built there than in the rest of Sweden.

Nykvist does not believe there will be any abrupt changes in the housing market in the near future.

“Supply and demand can change pretty rapidly but we believe this trend with small price changes will persist during the spring season, too.”

According to statistics published by housing listings website Hemnet, the supply of tenant-owned apartments in Stockholm dropped by 8.4 percent in the first week of March compared to the same period last year.

Nationally, the supply dropped by 8.5 percent, while the supply of single-family homes fell by 5 percent.

Analytics firm Valueguard-KTH’s housing price index (Hox) also points to rising housing prices.

According to the Hox-index, which is based on data from Mäklarstatistik and the Swedish land surveyor Lantmäteriet, the price of both tenant-owned apartments and single-family homes rose by 1.1 percent in the past month.

TT/The Local/nr

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