Swedish pensioners catch on to tax reform

Swedish pensioners saving money by employing private home assistants rather than relying on state-run services is a growing market following a tax deduction reform. Key Swedish interest rate unchanged: Riksbank (25 Oct 12)
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The expansive tax reform (RUT) that made household services cheaper in 2010 could save some pensioners as much as 9,000 kronor ($1,400) a year, the newspaper Expressen has calculated.Specifically, help with the cleaning is now half the price of what it once was, offering pensioners a budget-saving option.Gunnar Degerman at the Swedish Pensioners Association (Svenska pensionrsfrbundet, SPF) told The Local that the market is picking up speed.Its getting ever more common. Old people are statistically slow starters when it comes to new things, but this market is now in full swing, Degerman said in reference to the 2010 tax reform.There are already many private actors in the home assistance market but they are usually employed indirectly by the municipality and are not covered by the tax reformThe home assistants run the gamut from helpers who do the weekly grocery shopping to physiotherapists that give treatment in the home. Yet, it is only pensioners who need less than four hours of help a week who benefit financially, according to Expressen. Degerman at the Pensioners Assocation said older Swedes are increasingly crunching numbers to see if it is worth keeping the municipally-funded services (hemtjnst), in which pensioners contribute a nominal fee every year. Many of them sit down and calculate how much it costs on a per hour basis to keep using hemtjnsten or go private, Degerman told The Local. Ann TrnkvistFollow Ann on Twitter here

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Swedish pensioners catch on to tax reform

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