Living in Finland

Apartment ownership in Finland, part IV: how much do homes cost in Finland?

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This is our fourth blog post in our series about owning an apartment in Finland. In this one, we’ll take a look at how much homes cost in Finland.

In the previous blogs in this series we’ve:

Apartment ownership in Finland

Owning an apartment or a house is the primary way for people to accumulate wealth in Finland. For many, it’s the only form of wealth they have.

The homeownership rates vary globally. Generally speaking, governments tend to favor homeownership. They think homeownership brings with it certain societal benefits. The same has been true in Finland. Here, the government has favored homeownership for example in taxation policy.

In 2018, there were about 3 042 000 homes in Finland. The majority of those were owner-occupied (56.1 %). Only 32.3 % were rental homes. 

In the Helsinki, Turku, and Tampere regions, 66 % of working-age Finns lived in a home they themselves owned. This is very close to the European average of 69.3 %. In comparison, 32 % of all immigrants in those three cities owned their home.

Outside those regions, homeownership is more common both among native-born Finns (73 %) and among immigrants (37 %). However, homeownership rates among immigrants varied according to their country of origin. And naturally also according to how long they’ve lived in Finland. 

59.9 % of Finnish homes were apartments in rowhouses or apartment buildings. 

In Finland, the average age for buying one’s first home was 28.8 years in 2018. 

What kind of apartments are there?

Finnish homes are quite small on average, but there’s a lot of variation. The average size of Finnish homes in 2018 was 79.5 square meters. The average size of studio apartments is 34 square meters. One-bedroom apartments are on average 54 square meters in size, and two-bedroom apartments 79 square meters. 30 % of all homes are one-bedroom apartments.

Owner-occupied homes are usually slightly larger in size. They are on average 97 square meters while the average size for rental homes in Finland is 52 square meters. 

The larger an apartment is, the more likely it is that it’s owner-occupied. For example, out of the smaller 20-29 square meter homes, 86 % were rental homes. Whereas only about 15 % of homes larger than 120 square meters were rentals. 

Currently, over half of the Finnish homes have their own sauna. In the 1980s, only 29.8 % of Finnish homes had one. In those days, apartment buildings usually had a joint sauna where residents could reserve their own turn. Then, the trend changed and apartments started having their own saunas. These days apartments in brand new apartments don’t necessarily have saunas. But the joint saunas have made a comeback. 

In the new apartment buildings, communal saunas are often at the top of the building. Whereas in older apartment buildings, saunas were placed in the basement.

sauna in an apartment building in Finland
The view from the communal sauna of one of the apartment buildings in the Tripla complex in Pasila, Helsinki.

How much do homes cost in Finland?

Statistics Finland published its latest review of apartment prices in March of this year. We’ll use that review and the attached data to take a look at how much homes cost in Finland.

They report that the prices of older apartments came down at the end of last year. In the capital region, prices rose by 1.6 % in comparison with the 2018 prices from the same time period. In comparison, elsewhere in Finland, they came down by about 2 %.

The table below shows how much homes cost in the largest cities in Finland. These are average prices per square meter in older apartments in the last few years.

Average prices of homes per square meter in different cities in the past few years. (Source: Statistics Finland, table 112s)
AreaApartment type2016201720182019
Finlandstudio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
2745 €
2050 €
2105 €
2816 €
2104 €
3138 €
2884 €
2128 €
2190 €
2891 €
2140 €
2240 €
The metropolitan area:
Helsinki, Espoo, Kauniainen,
and Vantaa
studio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
5026 €
3694 €
3413 €
5282 €
3854 €
3525 €
5456 €
3992 €
3696 €
5638 €
4063 €
3824 €
The surrounding areas:
Hyvinkää, Järvenpää, Kerava,
Riihimäki, Kirkkonummi,
Nurmijärvi, Sipoo, Tuusula,
and Vihti
studio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
2336 €
1982 €
1866 €
2311 €
1978 €
1892 €
2292 €
1977 €
1857 €
2267 €
1942 €
1795 €
Helsinkistudio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
5505 €
4151 €
3906 €
5837 €
4365 €
4085 €
6054 €
4556 €
4295 €
6291 €
4653 €
4508 €
Espoo and Kauniainenstudio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
4026 €
3316 €
3050 €
4030 €
3483 €
3097 €
4143 €
3508 €
3120 €
4184 €
3572 €
3243 €
Vantaastudio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
3233 €
2547 €
2225 €
3332 €
2557 €
2226 €
3331 €
2630 €
2284 €
3383 €
2638 €
2290 €
Turkustudio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
2706 €
1965 €
1745 €
2807 €
2031 €
1815 €
2945 €
2090 €
1843 €
3062 €
2153 €
1943 €
Tamperestudio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
2913 €
2364 €
2264 €
2931 €
2434 €
2251 €
3133 €
2556 €
2374 €
3167 €
2642 €
2465 €
Jyväskylästudio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
2150 €
1725 €
1684 €
2152 €
1796 €
1762 €
2387 €
1851 €
1737 €
2105 €
1725 €
1835 €
Oulustudio
one bedroom
two bedrooms or more
2185 €
1767 €
1779 €
2326 €
1832 €
1749 €
2375 €
1867 €
1843 €
2574 €
2039 €
1930 €

Huge variation within cities

The table above shows clearly how much more expensive homes are in Helsinki than in surrounding smaller cities. Let alone in the rest of Finland.

But there’s a lot of variation within the cities as well. Here’s an example of variation in apartment prices within the cities of Helsinki and Turku in 2019. (Source: Statistics Finland, table 112s)

CityPostal codeAverage prize per square meter
Helsinki00100, 00120, 00130, 00140, 00150,
00160, 00170, 00180, 00220, 00260
studios: 8160 €
one bedroom: 7326 €
two bedrooms or more: 7283 €
00200, 00210, 00250, 00270, 00280,
00290, 00300, 00310, 00320, 00330,
00340, 00380, 00500, 00510, 00520,
00530, 00540, 00550, 00560, 00570,
00580, 00590, 00610, 00810, 00850,
00990
studios: 6650 €
one bedroom: 5699 €
two bedrooms or more: 5495 €
00240, 00350, 00360, 00370, 00400,
00430, 00440, 00620, 00650, 00660,
00670, 00680, 00690, 00730, 00780,
00790, 00800, 00830, 00840, 00920
studios: 4957 €
one bedroom: 4211 €
two bedrooms or more: 3865 €
other postal codes within Helsinkistudios: 4054 €
one bedroom: 3033 €
two bedrooms or more: 2675 €
Turku20100, 20500, 20700, 20810, 20900studios: 4033 €
one bedroom: 3345 €
two bedrooms or more: 3119 €
20200, 20250, 20300, 20380, 20400,
20520, 20720, 20880, 20960
studios: 3188 €
one bedroom: 2427 €
two bedrooms or more: 2102 €
other postal codes within Turkustudios: 2050 €
one bedroom: 1456 €
two bedrooms or more: 1350 €

So, the average price for a square meter for studio apartments in Helsinki varies between 4054 € and 8160 €. The difference is huge!

Within Turku, the range is also quite large between the most and least expensive areas of the city.

This shows that knowledge of local conditions is necessary when you are considering buying an apartment.

Sources:

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