Skip to main content
To KTH's start page To KTH's start page

The independent middleman

A study of the real estate agent profession and the concept of "sound estate agent practice" in theory and practice

Time: Thu 2022-05-12 13.00

Location: Kollegiesalen Brinellvägen 8, Campus, videolänk

Video link:

Language: Swedish

Subject area: Business Studies

Doctoral student: Rickard Engström , Fastighetsföretagande och finansiella system

Opponent: Docent David Sörhammar, Stockholms universitet

Supervisor: Professor Björn Berggren, Skolan för arkitektur och samhällsbyggnad (ABE); Docent Inga-Lill Söderberg, Skolan för arkitektur och samhällsbyggnad (ABE); Annina H. Persson, Skolan för arkitektur och samhällsbyggnad (ABE)

Export to calendar

QC 20220422


The Swedish real estate agent has a role as an independent intermediary with a dutyof care towards both buyers and sellers, which differs from how the brokerageprofession is organized in most other parts of the world. Sweden is unique and theeffects of the Swedish model is therefore worth studying. In Sweden, the profession isregulated by law and practitioners' compliance with regulations is supervised by theSwedish Estate Agents Inspectorate (FMI). A sanction from the FMI may be areminder, warning or revocation of registration, which basically is a professional ban.An important concept is "sound estate agent practice". What is considered to be soundestate agent practice is determined by the decisions from the FMI and the courts. Twoprofessional associations – Mäklarsamfundet and Fastighetsmäklarförbundet – areinvolved in the development of practices that govern how the Swedish real estateagent should act as the independent intermediary between sellers and buyers in thehousing market.

This dissertation consists of a binder and four articles. The overall purpose is todescribe and analyze the real estate agent's professional role in a Swedish context andespecially their role as independent intermediaries. Based on three researchquestions, both qualitative and quantitative methods are used to collect and analyzeprimary and secondary data.

A summary of the results show that active Swedish real estate agents generally balancethe challenges that can be accommodated within the role of independentintermediary, but that demarcation regarding sound estate agent practice createsundesirable interpretation problems. Relating to practice in everyday life is moredifficult for certain categories of brokers: younger and older brokers as well as brokersin big cities. It is also these who are to a greater extent receives sanctions for violationsin the professional practice by the supervisory authority (FMI). The dissertation alsoaddresses the concept of professional development and a comparison with Australia(Victoria) and existing theory indicates that the Swedish real estate agent'sprofessional practice should be seen as a semi-profession. The dissertation alsoprovides suggestions for the development of further research as well as for thedevelopment of practice.