How do first-hand and second-hand contracts work for renting an apartment in Stockholm?

How does first and 2nd hand contracts work for renting an apartment in StockholmOne of the fastest-growing cities in Europe, Stockholm has been a place of attraction for many years. The housing market is quite competitive nowadays and finding an apartment to rent in Stockholm is a challenge that you shouldn’t enter unprepared. That’s why we’ve decided to throw some light on the 2 main types of renting contracts you will come upon when in search for an apartment to rent in Stockholm: first-hand and second-hand renting contracts. The first-hand contract (förstahandskontrakt) A first-hand renting contract is “the queen of renting”. First-hand rents are apartments that are built by the state and you can rent them at a really low cost (sometimes at half the price of a standard apartment rent). That’s what most people are after but just the chosen few (very few) actually get. First-hand means that the contract is signed between the person who is renting and the actual owner of the building. If you are about to sign a first-hand contract have in mind that it can be both permanent, and for a set period of time. The housing queue (bostadskö) Registering for the local municipal housing queue is the most common way to rent through a first-hand contract. In Stockholm, however, it is extremely difficult to avail of it, as queuing can take up to several years – Stockholm is the city with one of the highest queuing times for rentals in the whole world! The second-hand contract (andrahandskontrakt) A second-hand renting contract, widely known as subletting is what most foreigners (expats) choose as a rental option when moving to Stockholm. This is a subletting contract that is usually signed between the person who is renting and the person who owns the first-hand contract. Subletting (second-hand contracting) is a common practice in the bigger cities, and especially in Stockholm. If you rent through a second-hand contract, make sure that your landlord is trustworthy and insist on a formal contract that is signed by both parties. The regional rent tribunal If your rights as a tenant are violated, the regional rent tribunal is the place where you should seek justice. The tribunal is a mediator in disputes between tenants and landlords (the disputes usually refer to topics like renting conditions, transfers, and subletting). Except for when there’s a dispute at hand, the regional rent tribunal can also be the source of helpful information like tenancy legislation, among other things related to renting.