Rental legislation and the changing Icelandic rental market


  • Ólafur Sindri Helgason Housing and Construction Authority, Iceland
  • Fredrik Kopsch Division of Real Estate Science, Lund University



Iceland, rental markets, rent legislation, transaction costs


Rental markets hold an important role for a functioning housing market as a whole. Households with shorter time horizons, as well as households with little private equity and difficulties acquiring capital can see their housing needs met on the rental market. A functioning rental market does however require some sort of legislation. In this paper we argue that legislation must adapt to changing rental markets. We do so from the specific case of Iceland. The Icelandic rental market has, since the financial crisis, undergone noticeable structural change, evident from a number of perspectives. By applying a framework based in the role of rental market legislation, we provide a comparison between legislation in the Nordic countries. We conclude, based both in the presented structural change of the Icelandic rental market, and in aspects of Nordic rent legislation, that there is a case to be made for changes to the Icelandic legislation.


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How to Cite

Helgason, Ólafur S., & Kopsch, F. (2020). Rental legislation and the changing Icelandic rental market. Nordic Journal of Surveying and Real Estate Research, 5, 7–28.



Received 2020-05-29
Accepted 2020-10-09
Published 2020-11-17