Tenant-owners to pay fee to rent out flats

Tenant-owners to pay fee to rent out flats
Tenant-owner associations are set to be given the right to charge flat owners a fee for renting out their flats, according to proposals agreed between the government and interest organisations.

“Subletting involves some additional costs of administration. Records have to be kept and if you get (rental) tenants living in the apartment instead of tenant-owners, there is a risk of increased responsibility and work for the others,” said Anders Lago of the tenant-owner association interest group HSB.

The fee will be a maximum of 10 percent of the basic amount (geared to the price index), which in 2013 would equate to 4,450 kronor ($670).

The proposal, which is set to form part of a government housing bill to be brought before parliament in the autumn, was meanwhile presented as a means to “facilitate the renting out of unused flats”.

The proposal also includes an easing of restrictions on renting out tenant-owner flats – a form of cooperative condominium style dwelling common in Sweden. If passed by parliament the changes will come into force on July 1st 2014.

Anders Lago explained that the reasons permitted to rent out flats will be expanded, for example, to family members and if you are working away from home.

He argued however that in order to counter speculation the right of tenant-owner associations to deny rental requests should be upheld.

The government had previously proposed that tenant-owners be given the right to rent out their flats for up to a three year period without requiring the approval of their neighbours but this was defeated in parliament.

Housing Minister Stefan Attefall however expressed satisfaction over the agreement.

“The housing shortage is so acute that we must leave no stone unturned in order to release more apartments and now we are making it possible to be generous when subletting.”

“The proposal that we first wanted was a radical change that might have provided a quicker outcome…. With this deal, we respect the right of associations to make their own decisions.”

“We think this is a good solution that will hopefully provide stability over time,” he said.

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