If you are reading this blog post, it means that you are already in Sweden looking for accommodation or you are planning to travel there soon.
Gothenburg is Sweden’s second-largest city and one of the most cosmopolitan cities around the world. Gothenburg serves as a home to many international students due to its world-class educational institutes. Not only students but families and individuals from all around the globe are moving to the city for work opportunities as well. For this reason, Gothenburg has been facing a housing shortage for international students and families. It is advised to everyone who is moving to Gothenburg to start apartment hunting as soon as possible.
Especially for international students, it is nearly impossible to find student housing right before the commencement of their semester. It usually takes a year or so to receive an acceptance offer for student housing. However, if you cannot make your way up to student housing, there are few other options to consider.
This blog post is a guide for all students or families who have been facing difficulty in finding accommodation in Gothenburg.
One of the foremost and secure options for international students is to apply for university residence. Before getting into the exhausting process of apartment hunting, check with your university if they are offering student residence or not. If you have secured admission to Gothenburg’s top universities i.e. the University of Gothenburg and the Chalmers University of Technology, then you are more likely to avail of the university residence. However, university residence is not free of cost unless it is being covered in your scholarship. The dorm rooms in the university have a bathroom and a shared kitchen and it costs about 2800 to 5000 SEK per month. For international students, it is advised to check with their corresponding university if they offer accommodation or not.
Exchange Student Housing
If you are going to be an exchange student in Gothenburg, then you have to apply for university residence in your application. If you are an exchange student under the Erasmus Mundus or Linnaeus Palme schemes, then the chances are high that you will secure university residence for your exchange program duration.
Register at SGS
SGS, or locally known as ‘stiftelsen göteborgs studentbostäder’ is a student accommodation service provider. It works on a queue system. The applicant has to collect points to increase their chances of getting a room or apartment sooner. SGS is the city’s largest student housing foundation working side by side with student unions and the municipality of Gothenburg. As you get your acceptance letter from the university, register on SGS because the sooner you apply, the more points you can collect and ultimately get a room or apartment within the right time. It usually takes six months to a year to get a room or apartment.
Tip: If you join any student union, you earn extra queue points!
Here is the link on how to register on SGS:
Register on Rental Websites
If you are unable to get university residence or looking for private accommodation then this is what you can do next. There are many rental websites that you can register on and find your ideal apartment. These websites have thousands of listings. You can easily and smartly search for a place online and book it in advance to avoid any inconvenience. Some of the most well-known and reliable rental sites for apartment hunting in Gothenburg is as follow:
- Blocket.se: This website offers a wide range of residency options, from houses to single rooms, where you can find your ideal accommodation. The website is in the Swedish language, however, you can use the Google Translate feature if you are not familiar with the local language.
- Bostad Direkt: Bostad is another rental platform with many residency options for students, families, and businesses.
- Samtrygg: Samtrygg is famous for providing sublets in Gothenburg.One of the plus points of renting a place through Samtrygg is that you don’t have to pay an advance.
- Boplats.se: You can find many reasonable options across the city at Boplats. However, you have to pay a little registration fee to start your search for a place.
- HousingAnywhere: HousingAnywhere is a safe and sound online platform for all those looking for a reasonable place in Gothenburg. From rooms to apartments, you can find options according to your budget and space requirements.
With the advancements in social media, the world has become a global village. Now you can connect with people living miles apart from you with just a few clicks. Now, if you are looking for a place to settle down in Gothenburg, then one possible way to search for it is to explore Facebook groups. Many public and private groups are specially created to help students, working individuals, and families find a reasonable place to stay in Gothenburg. You can post what sort of residence you are looking for in the group and other members can help you or sublet you a room or apartment. From these groups, you can connect with other individuals and also decide to take up a place mutually and become roommates. This will help you financially and if you go to the same university, you can also share your transport.
Following are some of the Facebook groups that can you check out to find accommodation in Gothenburg:
- Find Accommodation in GOTEBORG! (Private Group)
- Bostad Göteborg (Private Group)
- Housing, Rooms, Apartments, Sublets/ Bostad Göteborg Gothenburg Goteborg (Public Group)
- Houses for rent in Gothenburg / Göteborg (Public Group)
- Lägenheter i Göteborg (Private Group)
Rum SÖKES/UTHYRES i Göteborg (Public Group)
Move to Gothenburg
Move to Gothenburg is an initiative working for people that are new to Gothenburg. The initiative is a collaboration between the business and academic community of this city. This platform helps you through moving out, setting up in the city, and even how to start working as well. If you are a student looking for a room or an apartment or if you are looking for a house for a family, Move to Gothenburg will help you instantly. It will also help you in knowing your tenancy rights so you don’t have to face any inconvenience.
Here is where you can find more Move to Gothenburg:
You can also arrange your accommodation if you find any private landlord online or in the city (when you reach). HomeQ is an online marketplace where you will find thousands of listings added by private landlords. However, it is advised to never sign a rental contract or pay cash before you personally visit the space to avoid scams or any inconvenience in the future.
Explore HomeQ, if you want to search and short-list places before you arrive in Gothenburg to just start your apartment hunting right away:
Stay in a Hostel
Last but not the least, if you cannot find an appropriate place soon in Gothenburg, you can always stay in a hostel or hotel for some time. Living in a hostel can be hard at first, but unless you find someplace good enough, you can survive in a hostel. Always choose a hostel that is near to your university or workplace. Here are some of the best and safe hostels and hotels all around the city:
STF Göteborg Stigbergsliden Hostel
Linnéplatsens Hotel & Hostel
Spoton Hostel & Sportsbar
Inquire from your Seniors or Classmates
This might seem awkward at first, but this tip has proven to be very much helpful for many students. You can ask your seniors if they know a place you can rent or if they guide you about the rental process and give you some extra tips for that. Your seniors have gone through the same process, so it is smart to ask them. You can also ask your classmates or seniors if they looking for roommates, or maybe someone is moving out from their room or apartment and they can refer you. Consider this as your last option but sometimes your classmate, friend, or any senior might let you stay at their place for a while till you find a reasonable spot for yourself.
Stay with a Local Family
Some families who have a spare room or two, allow students or working individuals to stay with them on reasonable rent. This option might not be more to your liking as it lacks privacy, restricted personal space, and sharing of space like bathroom and kitchen. However, it is not all bad. If you get to stay with the locals, you can learn a lot of things about Gothenburg. You can also adapt to the culture and language here more easily. There is so much to learn when you are living with an actual Swedish family.
Things to Avoid While Moving to Gothenburg
If it is your first time moving to Gothenburg, then here are some of the things to avoid while finding an accommodation:
- Never share your bank details, identity card, or passport with anyone
- Never rent out a place without seeing or visiting it. If you cannot make it, ask a friend to check out the apartment or room for you
- Never pay in advance for rental places to avoid scam
- If the offer seems too good to be true, then double-check the details and then make any decision
- Also if someone is demanding more money than its actual worth, do your market research and know the standard rent according to the place
- Always report a scammer (if you come across any)
- If you have any concerns or want to know about your rights as a Swedish tenant, then you can reach out to the Swedish Union of Tenants or the Regional Rent Tribunal
- The rent typically includes heating and water charges. So make sure to clear that out in your rental contract with your landlord
First-Hand Contracts vs. Second-Hand Contracts
A first-hand contract is one where you can directly rent out the place from its owner. It is hard to find first-hand apartments in Gothenburg. Plus, mostly first-hand apartments are unfurnished.
A second-hand contract is one where the individual who has the place on rent sublets you. These types of apartments are comparatively easier to find. However, places on sublets are restricted to a limited time. Second-hand apartments can be furnished or unfurnished and the rent will vary accordingly.
Documents Required for Contract
For a rental contract, you need the following documents:
- Swedish Identification Number
- Proof of Sufficient Income
- Employment Contract
- Some landlords might ask for your passport/visa