Ask Crista (RT): ‘Moving to Stockholm’

The Question*

Hi Crista,

I hope you are doing good in these difficult times.
Recently, I went through your blog and found it very interesting and useful! I am not Swedish but I have studied in Sweden for some time. However, it was not in Stockholm, but in Lund. Therefore, the cost of living and housing there was easy to manage. 
I just finished my studies and I have found a position in Stockholm. Just like you, I have a loan to refund (US University fees are terrible).
I have a few questions about moving to Stockholm, in this situation: 
In your blog, you have said that you were living in a flatshare. How did you find it?
How did you manage to work (on your Ph.D.) and refund your loan?

I have been to Stockholm when I was in Lund, and I saw the prices were a bit crazy there (and I have lived in Paris where life is super expensive).
Anyway, I hope you will find some time to answer my email, that would be super helpful 🙂
I wish you the best!

*edited for clarity

The Answer


Congratulations on your new position and moving to Stockholm.

Yes, I actually have my housing through
which is for current students. 
There a lot of housing queues available in town. The main one: SB (Stockholm Bostader) is a long one, it can be 10 -20 years before you find anything. My recommendation is to look into these housing queues and join one of them. However, it might be a few years before you get an offer. 
The best way to find something ASAP is to search on FB groups and the marketplace, be careful of scams though. You can also ask on the Girls Gone International in the Stockholm group.
If you don’t want to go that route, another way to start the search for yourself is through Blocket or Qasa. Many of my friends found their housing that way. 
Another way is to contact all the rental agencies in Stockholm and see if they have any housing options that are not on the queue. This has worked for some but I have gotten more ‘no’s’ from this route. 
Right now, until you can find something, you could do the Hotel Apartments, they are all over the county. Most are furnished and have long-term stays which could be helpful until you find something steady.
I still have my student loan, unfortunately, I am paying it down slowly using monthly international transfers. I get paid a monthly salary as part of my Ph.D. education, so that money goes towards that loan. It’s a form of leverage, I guess. 
I have heard through the grapevine of people using regular loans here to pay off their student loans in the US. I am not sure how it works out exactly. So, I cannot give you any recommendations as to that. 
I hope some of that helps you and congratulations on your job in Stockholm! 
Crista (Richful Thinker)

Do you want to ask me about Stockholm, getting educated abroad, or money things. Please e-mail me.

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