Accommodation in StockholmApril 5, 2019
The housing market in Stockholm can be competitive, expensive, and quite limited. Add kids or pets to this – and it can easily become one of the most challenging things you will have to deal with in Sweden.
If your partner or spouse is a student, you can usually live in a Campus apartment provided by the University’s relocation services. However, this period is always limited, so sooner or later every expat or foreign student has to deal with a shortage of apartments for rent in Stockholm.
The alternative is buying an apartment or a house, but that can be quite expensive. Moving to one of the nice neighbourhoods outside the city centre may be a possible solution, especially since the public transportation system around Stockholm is very well connected and quite reliable.
If you are firm on your wish to find a rental apartment in Stockholm, here are a few tips, that might help you:
- Contact the university’s relocation service and ask if they have a list for housing outside the campus. Sometimes they receive offers of housing from individuals outside the university looking for a reliable tenant. The relocation service considers these offers to be safe, but they are not a relocation offer and any contract will be your own responsibility.
- If you or you partner are a student in Stockholm, you can always join the waiting list at https://www.sssb.se. However, the queuing time can be rather long, so be ready to wait for at least one or two years before you get offered a place to rent.
- If you are planning to stay in Sweden, it might be a smart idea to register your family at https://bostad.stockholm.se/en or https://www.byggvesta.se for a first-hand contract. First-hand contract (Förstahand) means that you will rent this apartment in your name directly from the landlord, it is cheaper than second-hand contracts, but the queuing time may take many years, in some districts – even decades.
- A second-hand contract (Andrahand) is the most common and quick type of a sublet in Stockholm. You should always remember that if you rent an apartment without a direct consent from the landlord – you may take the risk of being evicted at short notice. There are many ways of finding a sublet for a second-hand contract. The most popular and trusted web pages are:
There are many thematic closed groups and message boards with sublet ads on Facebook. If you are looking for a roommate or room to rent – this might be the perfect option.
- Most people, however, agree that the fastest way to find a reliable and long-term housing in Stockholm is through your own network. Talk to your friends, co-workers, teachers or parents at your kids’ school – let them know that you are looking for a long-term residence. Post an ad on your personal Facebook page or other social medias. Ask your friends and contacts to share it on their pages.
Scams and Frauds
Newcomers can often become an easy target for false rental ads and frauds. The housing fraud schemes in Stockholm are becoming more creative each year. Almost every expat in Stockholm knows to check for a person’s credentials using hitta.se or eniro.se. However, even if you manage to find this person’s name as a landlord or an owner of the advertised housing, this might not be a 100% guarantee of a safety deal. A common fraudulent trend emerging these days is a scam, in which an actual owner of the apartment finds tenants through Blocket or Facebook, even shows it to them and promises to rent it furnished then asks for a deposit to secure the rent. When the tenants are supposed to move in or are promised to handover the keys – they usually find out that the owner of the apartment had already sold it a couple of days ago and has left the country. It is extremely hard to secure yourself from such a clever scheme. The only advice would be to contact the Head of the association of the building and collect any information if the apartment is in a process of being sold.
Another popular trend is to invite newcomers and people looking for a rental in Stockholm to join the housing search-websites. These webpages usually don’t look suspicious until they ask for a small fee for an access to a ‘unique’ or ‘private’ rental database. In the end, these webpages usually don’t have their own databases, they just redirect you to other popular websites like blocket or qasa. Unfortunately, this isn’t illegal and you can’t get a refund for the paid fee, so stick to using the old popular rental websites.
Don’t forget to make sure that you have a household insurance policy (hemförsäkring) after finding a place to stay and be aware of the rental scams and frauds. KTH relocation provides some useful tips on how to avoid housing frauds.