Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to ascertain the current strategic property management practises in the state and county government sector as well as in some industrial companies in Sweden in view of limited access to capital or government funding due to the economic recession. 

Design/methodology/approach: A quantitative method based on an electronic self-administered questionnaire to the company managers was used. 

Findings: The results indicate that the degree of special property ownership in the surveyed companies is still high and that the probability of an expansion of the property leasing market in the coming five years is very low. The findings further reveal that the government sector has a higher level of adherence to set maintenance plans as well as longer payback duration on investments and that the government companies lean more towards maintenance than an investment when classifying activities in their accounting. Though the maintenance plans in the public sector were shorter than those in the private sector there is very little neglected maintenance in the industry in contrast to the government sector especially in the counties. 

Originality/value: The key findings are of use in other countries that are considering privatisation or sale-leaseback transactions of large property portfolios under government ownership and provide new insights on the strategic maintenance of the properties in question.