• Sweden's news in English

Riksdag allows flat owners to set rent

19 Dec 2012, 15:30

Published: 19 Dec 2012 15:30 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The centre-right government has long wanted to give flat owners more flexibility in what they charge when the rent out their homes.

The proposal, which was voted through parliament on Wednesday with a slim margin, could ease the housing crunch by offering a financial incentive to rent out unused flats, the government argues.

Critics fear it will undermine Sweden’s cooperative model of housing.

The different changes to Sweden's housing laws proved so controversial in the last few months that the government had to build an unusual alliance on the floor of parliament.

Its MPs had to rely on the support of the minority Sweden Democrats, usually a pariah party rather than a political partner, to get a majority.

The Sweden Democrats abandoned the government, however, on one specific proposal that wanted to take away the cooperatives' right to veto a tenant who wanted to rent out his or her flat.

Usually, such permission is given only when a tenant is working or studying in a different city or country for a specified time, or if a tenant wants to give living with a partner a trial-run.

MPs were evenly split 169 to 169 when they voted on the proposal, in effect stalling it.

Story continues below…

TT/The Local/at

Follow The Local on Twitter

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

23:16 December 19, 2012 by rramirez
Is there somewhere (or someone) that provides a breakdown of the Swedish "cooperative model of housing." I see this term referenced, but I am curious what it actually means, what it actually is and what it actually intends. Is it based in economics or social policy?
10:29 December 20, 2012 by Twiceshy

The cooperative model of housing is just a different way of selling and buying apartments. It's sort of in between buying and renting.

In some countries a company builds an apartment building and then sells each apartment for a profit to individual people who want to live there. People may take a mortgage to pay for the whole apartment.

In Sweden a company builds an apartment building and an association is created which owns all the apartments and debt from the construction. People who want to live there buy shares in this association which gives them the right to live in one of the apartments (they can take a mortgage to do this purchase). Every month they pay a fee ("avgift") which the association uses to service its debt. What this means is that as the debt decreases throughout the years, this fee also decreases which makes the apartment more valuable.

It's not a bad system - you can own a house without taking on a heavy mortgage yourself, as long as you're OK with paying a higher monthly cost to this association.
Today's headlines
Here's how slow Sweden's high-speed trains are getting
A Swedish SJX2000 high speed train. Photo: Tomas Oneborg/SvD/TT

The high-speed rail journey between the three biggest Swedish cities is about to get longer.

The Local List
12 Swedish words with just awesome literal translations
A filthy-minded lobster, i.e. a snuskhummer. Photo: Gorm Kallestad/NTB scanpix/TT

One of our favourite things about the Swedish language is its wonderful compound words, which range from being utterly bizarre to making perfect sense.

US election
Donald Trump won't get new Ericsson head's vote
Trump pictured at a campaign rally in Florida. Photo: Evan Vucci/AP

The new Swedish-American boss of telecoms giant Ericsson has revealed he will not vote for the Republican nominee in the forthcoming US presidential election.

Swedes named fourth most gender equal in the world
A file photo of men and women pushing prams in Stockholm. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

Sweden has closed 81 percent of its overall gender gap according to the World Economic Forum.

Sweden: Russian warships in the Baltic 'worrying'
Swedish Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist. Photo: Vilhelm Stokstad/TT

Two Russian warships equipped with long-range missiles have entered the Baltic Sea after passing Denmark.

Why businesses are worried about Sweden's drone ban
A drone filming in Stockholm. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

The Local investigates what Sweden's new drone ban could mean for businesses in the country.

This is the new top boss of Swedish Ericsson
Börje Ekholm. Photo: Magnus Hjalmarson Neideman/SvD/TT

Telecoms giant Ericsson has appointed a new CEO after a turbulent year for the company.

These are Sweden's best universities: ranking
A new university ranking has been released. Photo: Cecilia Larsson Lantz/Imagebank.sweden.se

At least according to this global ranking, which picks 12 Swedish universities among the top-1000.

Swedish pharmacies restrict paracetamol sales for teens
The move is intended to cut paracetamol overdoses. Photo: Nora Lorek/TT

Sweden's pharmacies are banning teens under 18 from buying more than one pack of pills at a time.

Rwandan genocide suspect held in Sweden
A memorial centre in Kigali, Rwanda. Photo: Ben Curtis/AP

A man has been arrested in Sweden suspected of involvement in the 1994 Rwandan genocide which claimed 800,000 lives.

Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Is Game of Thrones coming to Sweden?
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available