For many people getting to build your own home by the lake in calm and picturesque northern Sweden may be a dream come true. And at just one krona for the land it certainly seems like a bargain.
But not a single person has tried to snap up the 15 plots made available by Norsjö municipality, some of them situated right by the lake. The catch, because there's always a catch, is that whoever takes them up on the offer is obligated to also build a house within two years.
“To a family it probably makes a difference if you have your own capital or are able to get a loan. In rural areas the finished house is not worth as much as it costs to build it,” council officer Elin Andersson told the SVT broadcaster.
The local authority even suspects that the low price may have discouraged potential buyers.
“It could give a bad impression that we're giving the plots away. We want to find other ways of stimulating construction,” said Andersson, adding that the council will now attempt to find another use for the land.
Rural areas have been struggling for years with Sweden's fast rate of urbanization.
As The Local reported on Thursday, a new report by the national job agency predicts that nearly a third of the working age population will have left their rural homes by 2030 to move to the cities for work.
Just over 4,100 people lived in Norsjö municipality in 2015, according to Statistics Sweden, down from 4,689 at the start of the millennium. Located some 70 kilometres west of Skellefteå, anyone who does move here will have plenty of recreation opportunities, including walking and Nordic skiing. The tourism office describes the municipality as “calm, safe and pleasant”.
If anyone is interested, there is more information available here (in Swedish).
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