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Foreign buyers snap up cheaper Swedish holiday homes

TT/The Local
TT/The Local - [email protected] • 20 Mar, 2023 Updated Mon 20 Mar 2023 09:50 CEST
Foreign buyers snap up cheaper Swedish holiday homes
Rural homes in Småland are a particularly good deal for foreign buyers at the moment. Photo: Alexander Hall/imagebank.sweden.se

Sweden’s weak krona is creating a property boom for estate agents selling houses to foreign buyers who wish to settle down in the Swedish countryside.

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The best deals are to be found in Kronoberg county in the Småland region of southern Sweden, where estate agent Christer Stjernfeldt is active.

“It’s practically a sale for our Danish and German, Dutch and Swiss customers. They’re seizing the opportunity too, so we’re really busy,” Stjernfeldt said.

Some three decades ago, when the krona was also low, these customers used to buy summer houses, but are today looking more for a second home where they can spend much of the year. The trend of working from home during the pandemic has made remote working easier. 

"It's led to more pleasant country towns," Stjernfeldt said. "There are more lit windows than there were 30 years ago."

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Foreign buyers also benefit from the fact that the cost of buying a holiday home has gone down in Sweden, with the average price falling two percent in one year and the number of homes changing hands falling by almost a third.

In Kronoberg in particular, prices have gone down even more, estate agent Jonas Hellström said. According to insurance company Länsförsäkringar, a million kronor will buy you 67 square metres' worth of holiday home in Kronoberg, compared with 18 square metres in Stockholm and 28 square metres in Sweden in general.

"There are a lot of single-family homes which become holiday homes, as there's not a huge difference in price," Hellström said. 

"You get a lot for your money if you buy a single-family home in a town."

Hellström described German buyers in particular, who he reaches via property site Immoscout24, as less cautious than Swedes.

"They don't hesitate, they buy," he said, "Swedes are more cautious."

He added that German buyers aren't as affected by high interest rates as Swedes, and that Småland has a number of other qualities popular among Germans, such as forests, lakes and a quieter atmosphere.

"Swedes want to get out to the coast, but those who are used to crowds in Europe prefer the peace and quiet," he said.

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