How has the coronavirus changed the Swedish housing market?

How has the coronavirus changed the Swedish housing market?
Photo: Fredrik Sandberg / TT
Property prices have reached record levels despite the coronavirus crisis, but in other ways the pandemic has left its mark.

“The market for detached houses is really hot right now, and could continue to be strong under the autumn if many people continue working from home,” Erik Holmberg, an analyst at property website Hemnet said. The Public Health Agency has advised everyone from Sweden to work from home at least until the end of the year if possible.

The increased demand for more living space has changed how people search for and buy property. 

More people are looking at housing ads, with the average ad for a detached house on Hemnet getting 35 percent more clicks than in August last year.

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And properties sold for an average of seven percent more than the starting price in August, Hemnet's figues show.

“Normally the increase is a few percent. This is the biggest rise since the spring of 2017,” Holmberg said.

This is down to a relatively low number of available properties, he explained.

Another change is that properties are being sold more quickly than usual, with detached houses selling within three weeks on average in August this year, five days less than the same month last year. Holmberg said this was “a sign that it's a free-for-all on the houses that are available”.

As for how the market will develop in the future, a lot depends on how well the Swedish economy weathers the crisis, and whether the trend to spend more time at home continues long-term. 

Vocabulary

starting price — (en) utgångspris

final price — (en) försäljningspris

to work from home — att jobba hemma/hemifrån

listing (in real estate) — (en) objekt

a free-for-all — (en) huggsexa

 

Properties in Sweden

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