Living in a condominium (bostadsrätt) means that you are a member of an economic association, a tenant owners’ association. Take notice that the term condominium (or condo) is not completely equivalent to the Swedish term “bostadsrätt” since this form of home ownership is specific for a few countries, there among Sweden. The association is managed by a board elected by the members of the association. The board elects a trustee who administrates rental management and maintenance of the property.
As the owner of a condo, you are responsible for the apartment’s internal maintenance and can – to a certain extent – renovate your apartment as you please. Renovations also increase the market value of the apartment. External maintenance, such as maintenance of the roof of the property, balconies and sewage system, is being managed – just like today – by a professional administrator.
Long-term, a housing cooperative can keep housing costs low for its members by maintaining the property well. The association has no interest in making a profit – you therefore live for a prime production cost. Because of this, living within a housing association is a cheaper housing form than tenancy, especially in the long run. When you move, you simply sell your apartment. Unlike a tenancy, it can also be transferred and inherited.
In a conversion there are a number of statutory elements that must be implemented to ensure that everything is correct. These include – among others – that the association establish an economic plan (budget) that must be certified by two independent auditors appointed by Boverket (the National Board of Housing, Building and Planning). The economic plan describes the property as well as the budget for the first ten years of the association.
The association must also conduct a thorough technical inspection of the property using an independent surveyor. The inspection will call in all the renovations that may occur during the first ten-year period. In that way the association can plan to take care of the renovations from day one.
In order for the housing cooperative to purchase the property, two thirds (about 67 %) of the residents must approve to the acquisition. This is decided at an extra general meeting (called “köpstämma”) where all residents get to vote.
If you do not want to or aren’t able to buy your apartment, you can remain as a tenant just like before. This means that you are entitled to the same service for renovations and the opportunity to swap the tenancy with ananother person. The association takes over the responsibilities that the property owner has today and will handle this through a new professional administrator. The rent will also be negotiated in the same way as before. You can thus vote for the association as the new property owner even if you want to continue renting your apartment.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you need anything further explained!
You can also read more at: Converting tenancy to owner-occupied apartments – Stockholms stad (boende.stockholm)