Swedes dream of living abroad – Spain at the top

Three in ten Swedes consider buying a home abroad and Spain is by far the most popular country, according to a recent Sifo survey. Sifo is a Swedish company that does market research, media and opinion polls.

According to the survey, 28% of Swedes have at some point considered buying a home abroad, and countries in warmer latitudes are the most attractive. Residents of large cities are the most interested in living abroad (32%) and in the 50-64 age group, 43% have considered buying a house abroad.

Spain clearly tops the list of countries in which Swedes would most like to buy a house (22%). Second place goes to Italy (9%), followed by France and Portugal (5%). Thailand, which once topped the list, is downgraded to 9th place with 2%.

“Spain remains the absolute first choice for Swedes to live abroad,” says Martin Posch, business area manager at real estate agency Fastighetsbyrån utland. Fastighetsbyrån is Sweden’s leading real estate brokerage chain with around 270 offices and around 1,700 employees across the country and in parts of Spain and Portugal.

“After the pandemic subsided, we are seeing record demand from Swedes, which is also holding up now that the Swedish property market is a bit fragile. The warm climate naturally attracts, but also culture, gastronomy, nature and leisure make Spain attractive. Good flight opportunities and different housing price levels also make it a realistic option for many, and remote working expands the target group of people living abroad,” he adds.

When asked how they would primarily like to use a home abroad, more than a third said they would use it during holidays and weekends (35%) and during all or most winter months (34%). 18% also say they would like to use the accommodation longer and work remotely.

“The pandemic has increased the ability to work remotely for longer periods of time, which means more people are considering living abroad as an alternative. The target group here in Spain has grown and we can see more young buyers. Many also believe that it is positive from a sustainability point of view to be able to use the house for longer periods of time and to reduce the number of thefts,” explains Martin Posch, Head of Business Area Fastighetsbyrån Abroad.

Survey results:
In which country, besides Sweden, would you most like to buy a house?
Spain (22%)
Italy (9%)
French (5%)
Portugal (5%)
Greece (5%)
Norway (3%)
Germany (2%)
United States (2%)
Thailand (2%)
Australia (1%)

If you were to buy a house abroad, how would you mainly like to use it? (many possible responses)
During holidays and weekends (35%)
During all/most periods of the winter season (34%)
For longer periods when I can work remotely (18%)
Doubtful, don’t know (16%)
Permanent (10%)

About the survey
The survey was carried out by Kantar Public on behalf of the Real Estate Agency. It is based on approx. 1,000 interviews, with people aged 18-79 and is nationally representative. Data collection was carried out in the randomly recruited Sifo panel between May 19 and May 25, 2022.