Types of accommodation


Country Report: Types of accommodation Last updated: 19/04/23


Swedish Refugee Law Center Visit Website

Housing offered by the Migration Agency is either in an apartment, in a normal housing area or at a reception centre and is acquired through public procurement. Ordinary apartments are usually the Migration Agency’s primary option for accommodating asylum seekers.[1] Asylum seekers can choose to live at a centre but in that case they might need to move to a town where the Migration Agency can offer them a place. There are differences in the way material reception conditions are provided depending on the procedure (“track”) in which asylum seekers are in. For applicants in the Dublin procedure (“Track 5A”) and the Accelerated Procedure (“Track 4”), for example, accommodation is located close to airports, with the aim of speeding up potential removal from Sweden.

If asylum seekers have their own resources, they must pay for accommodation themselves. If not, accommodation at a centre is free. Single persons need to share a room. A family can have its own room but must expect to share an apartment with other people. It is possible that asylum seekers are moved around within the centre or to another centre during the processing period.

Asylum seekers may also choose to opt for private accommodation with friends or relatives. However, the Migration Agency can only influence matters concerning the accommodation they themselves provide since they hold the contracts for the flats and can make demands on the owners regarding material conditions.

Should the asylum seeker choose to settle in so-called socio-economically challenged areas, the rules foresee that these persons are no longer entitled to a daily allowance (see Criteria and restrictions to access reception conditions).[2]

The total number of asylum seekers registered in the reception system at the end of 2022 was 61,350 (up from 23,353 in 2021), of which 8,542 were living in Migration Agency accommodation, 38,070 in private accommodation and 14,738  in other forms of accommodation.[3] Most likely the increase from the end of 2021 is due to persons from Ukraine coming to Sweden.

The number of places in  Migration Agency accommodation increased from 14,810 in 2021to 19,593 in 2022.[4]

The Migration Agency also operates “departure centres” for persons who have agreed to voluntary departure to the home country or Dublin cases. In 2020, the return process was adjusted so that rejected asylum seekers could move to a departure centre at an earlier point. However, the Covid-19 situation made it difficult to apply this.[5] In 2022 the government asked the Migration Agency to comment on a proposal to introduce a new kind of departure centre (återvändandecenter). The Migration Agency’s assessment was that the assignment to introduce such new departure centres was complex and needed further analysis. Among other things the Migration Agency came to the conclusion that the new kind of departure centres (återvändandecenter) would be similar to the existing departure centres (återreseboende) but would include more persons at an earlier stage of the process.




[1] Migration Agency, ‘Housing for asylum-seekers’, available in Swedish at: https://bit.ly/3fquSpf.

[2] Section 10a, Law on Reception of Asylum Seekers and Others, 1994:137.

[3] Migration Agency, Monthly Statistical Report, December 2022, 29.

[4] Migration Agency, Annual Report 2022, Dnr: 1.3.2-2023-2262, available in Swedish at: http://bitly.ws/AUE8.

[5] Migration Agency, Annual Report 2020, available in Swedish at: https://bit.ly/2Ngcrum, 48.

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX – I Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation