Finding a place to live in Stockholm

I have moved down to Stockholm about a month ago with the aim of living here for three months. I just came down from London, which was an amazing city to live in. However, being a fresh face in London provided some challenges; most notoriously finding a place to live in a crammed and over priced city. So when I found out my next country would be Stockholm I figured my housing situation could only improve from there. But oh boy, how wrong was I.

For anybody non-Swedish moving out here be warned: Stockholm appears to have the most shady and difficult housing situation of the whole of Europe. The main problem being that there is no rental market! Looking around on the internet I quickly realized that that the biggest black market in Stockholm consists of second hand tenancy agreements. Due to ominous government regulations people have to be on a waiting list (in some areas up to 15! years) to be eligible for one of the scarce rental options. And by that time the live situations has changed so drastically that most people already have bought their own apartment.

So, with my Swedish friends kindly notifying me about this daunting situation my quest for an apartment began. As it turns out there are several websites that provide a platform for rooms (most notably www.blocket.se) but speed and Swedish knowledge are of the essence here. Therefore the biggest tip I can give an international person that is moving to Sweden is find some Swedish friends fast; the easiest way is through connections. Those second-hand contracts are not advertised publicly  you need to know a person that knows a person to find yourself a spot.

Once you have nailed that down only one thing remains to do: off to IKEA to furnish your new place in true Swedish style, good luck!

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