Banks in Sweden

Bank i Sverige
How to open a bank account in Sweden, take a loan, and transfer money between two countries.

Open a bank account

You are entitled to open an account in a bank in Sweden if you can show proof of identity in a way that enables the bank to check your identity. The bank cannot demand that you have a Swedish personal identity number or an address in Sweden. In addition to the account, you are also entitled to a debit card (betalkort) for payments and withdrawals and to enable you to make online payments. These are the payment services normally available in your Internet bank.

You should take with you a Swedish driving licence, an ID card issued by a Swedish authority, or a certified ID card so that the bank can check your identity.

If you do not have Swedish identity documents, the bank can check your identity using your passport or some other document that proves your citizenship and is issued by an authority.

If you do not have any identity documents, the bank can still check your identity through other reliable documents and other checks in accordance with the obligatory risk-based procedures the bank must have in place.

If the bank denies you a bank account, contact the complaints department of the bank and ask them to reassess the decision.

Certain banks have commuter accounts for people who commute across a Nordic national border.

Transfer money between countries

For transfers and payments within the EU and EEA (Norway and Iceland), the same regulations and costs apply as for payments in Sweden if the payment is in euros or Swedish kronor. 

As a consumer, you should therefore investigate what type of transaction you want to make and what it costs before you make the transaction.

  • Always use the Internet bank to avoid extra charges.
  • Special codes are used for foreign payments to identify bank accounts and banks , such as BIC and IBAN/SWIFT.
  • If you want to transfer money between two different countries, you should try to use an EU payment.
  • The basic rule for an EU payment is that a payer and a recipient share the costs of the payment service. However, exceptions can be made for currency exchange.
  • Check the fees your bank charges to transfer money.

ID cards and electronic identification (e-ID)

At some banks in Sweden, you can apply for e-ID and an ID card, With an e-ID you can prove your identity and sign agreements and transactions with public agencies and businesses, by confirming your identity or your purchase with a code.

When you move to Sweden, you should contact the Swedish Tax Agency (Skatteverket) and ask them to issue you with a Swedish ID card. In Sweden, the ID card is used in many different situations in everyday life.

Credit and loans

When you apply for a loan, the lender must carry out a credit check to examine whether you have the financial capability to pay interest on the loan and repayments. To evaluate your ability to pay, the bank’s credit check must be based on sufficient information about your financial position. 

Banks cannot carry out credit checks across the Nordic borders. Banks in Sweden can only obtain information about events in Sweden.

If you work in another country, the bank conducting a credit check cannot see that you have an income, so you must confirm it in some other way, such as by submitting documents that show you have a certain income. Examples are employment contracts and salary slips.

Housing loans

Bank websites have calculation tools that help you calculate the monthly costs you can afford when you borrow money to buy a property. The Swedish Consumers' Banking and Finance Bureau also has a calculation tool for housing loans, Bolånekalkyl, which you can use when you want to buy a property.

It can be difficult to borrow money to buy property in another country. Some banks will not approve loans for purchase of property abroad or to people who live or work in a different country to that of the bank.

Consumer credit

The banks set their own terms and conditions for lending. However, they must not treat EU citizens differently on the grounds of nationality.

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NB! If you have questions regarding the processing of a specific case or application, or other personal matters, please contact the relevant authority directly.

Info Norden is the information service of the Nordic Council of Ministers. Here you can find info and tips if you wish to move, work, study, seek support or start a business in the Nordic region.