Frequently asked questions and answers (FAQ)

What is “second hand” subletting?

Second hand subletting occurs when one private person agree on letting another person live in his/her apartment whilst living elsewhere. It does not matter if there is an exchange of rent or not, as long as the original tenants lives elsewhere it legally counts a second hand agreement.

A second hand sublease of an entire apartment always requires approval from the property owner or the board of the housing cooperative. To get the approval “notable” there must be notable reasons; work/studies elsewhere, “test” living with future partner etc.

If you sublet a part of your home while still living there, your tenant counts as a lodger. This does usually not require the proprietor’s approval.

What is a second hand contract and what does it entitle?

A second hand agreement occurs when one person sublet his/her apartment/room to another person. A second hand agreement is the agreement between these parties. For it to be valid, both parties must sign it. Please note that the Tenancy Law trumps terms of conditions that have a negative impact for the tenant.

The contract should regulate the rent, conditions for deposit reimbursement, the length of the lease etc. It should also provide information regarding furnishings. Ideally, the proprietor and the tenant should carry out an inventory of all equipment and possible damages.

The contract should also regulate the notice period. It is possible to agree on the period of notice. The tenant is always entitled to at least three months' notice (if the rental period is longer than nine months).

Home insurance entered into by the proprietor usually do not cover damages caused by a secondary tenant. Whether the tenant is obliged to get separate home insurance should also be stated in the contract.

Get in contact with the Housing Office at Malmö University if you need draft rental contracts.

If you sublease a rental apartment, you should not pay a higher rent than the original tenant does. However, if it is a furnished apartment a 10% compensation might be added. If you share a flat with friends or rent a room in a private residence, your rent should be in proportion to the total rent. The average rent for a furnished room in Malmö varies between SEK 2,800 to 3,500.

If you rent house or a cooperative apartment, other rules abide; the rent can be high enough to cover the costs for the proprietor.

What does right of possession mean when it comes to housing?

A person who rent someone else's apartment can in some situations receive limited right of possession the apartment. If the secondary tenant has lived in the apartment for two years or more, and there is no agreement to remove the right of possession, he or she can demand to stay even if the person who has the first hand contract wishes to access the apartment. However - the secondary tenant is not entitled to a firsthand contract against the property owners will.

How do I give notice when renting "second hand"?

According to the Swedish rental law, the termination of a rental contract must be in writing. However, the law does not regulate exactly how to terminate a "second hand" contract. It is in the interest of both parties to include the termination process in the terms and conditions of the contract. The secondary tenant is always entitled to at least three months' notice (if he/she rented the apartment/room for more than nine months).

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