Opposition backs new sublet proposal

Opposition backs new sublet proposal
The government has secured backing from the Social Democrats on a reworked proposal for a new housing law extending the rights of tenant-owners to sublet their properties.

“There are minor changes, but still important to increase the possibility for a sublet,” said Veronica Palm of the Social Democrats.

The original government proposal included granting tenant-owners the right to sublet their apartments (bostadsrättlagenhet) without needing permission from tenant-owner associations (bostadsrättsförening) — effectively their neighbours — and was rejected by the opposition.

The opposition had meanwhile objected to the shift in rights in favour of the individual tenant-owner (in effect the flat owner).

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Furthermore the compromise proposal includes provisions to allow tenant-owner associations the right to levy a fee on those who sublet their flats.

“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 umbrella group HSB in June.

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).

Sweden’s cities suffer from a chronic shortage of available housing. The new housing bill is an attempt to address the situation and to encourage more tenant-owners to rent out their flats while they are unable to use them.

While the proposal stops short of allowing tenant-owners to decide for themselves, it does provide for some easing of restrictions on subletting.

SEE ALSO: Find your next home with The Local’s Rentals Section

The proposal will be put to the vote in the Riksdag in the autumn and if passed by parliament the changes will come into force on July 1st 2014.

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