Investment Property in Finland - Residential & Commercial
- Helsinki vs. The Rest of Finland
- Residential Property, Helsinki
- Residential Property Market Reports
- Residential Property Prices, Finland
- Investment Property: Advice, Procurement & Management
- Advice for Landlords: Finnish Landlords Association
- Tax on Real Property and Rental Income
- Commercial Property: Market Reports, Brokerage, Management, and Advice
- Related Links
This page specifically concerns investing in property in Finland, as opposed to purchasing property as a residence. For additional information on purchasing property in Finland see Buying Property.
Since the beginning of 2020, buyers from outside the EU and EEA need permission from the Finnish Ministry of Defence to buy real estate in Finland. However, a permit is NOT necessary when buying shares in a housing company, which is how most apartments are owned in Finland. See the Ministry of Defence page, and Apartment Ownership and Shares in Housing Companies.
It should be noted that the state plays a prominent role in the Finnish real estate market. Of the approximately 800,000 rental homes in Finland slightly more than half have been constructed with state subsidies from the Housing Finance and Development Centre for Finland (ARA). The majority of ARA-subsidised dwellings are owned by municipalities and managed through municipal companies, local authorities, and limited-profit housing companies. They are only released from regulation after a period of between 10 and 45 years, so the 'free market' for investors is limited.
More information: www.ara.fi - En, Fi, Sw
Returns on Investment
My (very basic) understanding is that the best return on Finnish residential property investments is to be found from small apartments in central Helsinki. Additionally areas undergoing gentrification such as Kallio, a couple of kilometres north of the city centre, offer attractive investment prospects. Percentage-wise, in the current economic climate larger properties don't tend to make such significant gains and the market is not as active. However, don't take my word for it - always obtain professional advice.
The companies referred and linked to on this page are established Finnish firms with local expertise, actively offering investment property information and services in English. This page does not include companies claiming online to be Finnish property investment experts or specialists, who upon investigation were found to be based overseas with little or no expertise regarding Finland.
I expect all the agents listed at Finnish Real Estate Agents would also be able to provide sound investment advice, they just haven't promoted that service in English at their sites... yet.
Helsinki vs. The Rest of Finland
Greater Helsinki, also known as the Helsinki Metropolitan Area, comprises the cities of Helsinki, Espoo, Vantaa and Kauniainen. It has a dominant position in Finland, accommodating quarter of the Finnish population and some 30% of all jobs. It delivers more than one-third of Finnish GDP and the proportion of private sector employment is significantly higher than in the rest of Finland. The global economy has a stronger impact on Helsinki than other regions. From the property investment perspective, central Helsinki is certainly the location of desire for most investors with the wherewithal, but it's also a lot more expensive than the rest of Finland as you will see below.
Investing Outside Helsinki
If you are interested in purchasing outside Helsinki, local real estate agents will have property data for their region stretching back over some years, and they should be able to provide good advice regarding the best investment prospects in terms of size, type and location of property. Language is rarely a barrier in Finland. In my limited experience with Finnish real estate agents (1 purchase, 2 sales) I have found them efficient, straightforward and ethical. This is in stark contrast to my experiences in Manhattan, which were high-pressure cutthroat affairs - and a lot more expensive.
Residential Property, Helsinki
Extract from KTI's report, Finnish Property Market 2023:
Residential rental growth has been moderate in the Helsinki metropolitan area in recent years, mainly due to the rapid increase in supply. New construction starts of rental residential properties started to slow down markedly in the latter half of 2022. In 2023, rental demand is expected to increase but rental growth is expected to be slower than the current inflation. In the Tampere and Turku regions, residential rental growth has been and is expected to continue to be stronger than in the metropolitan area.
For detailed info see KTI's
Finnish Property Market 2023 PDF Archive
Residential Property Market Reports
KTI Property Information is an independent information business providing regularly updated, comprehensive information and analysis of the Finnish real estate market.
KVKL, The Central Federation of Finnish Real Estate Agencies, publishes brief industry reports, including Finnish Housing Markets Reviews. Finnish.
- Changes in sale prices for houses and apartments
- Changes in rental prices for houses and apartments
- Turnover and percentage change of Finnish real estate transactions
- Other KVKL publications
Property Prices: Dwellings in Finland, 2023
According to preliminary data for March 2023 from the public authority for statistics, Statistics Finland, prices over the past 12 months of old housing company dwellings in blocks of flats and terraced houses had:
- Fallen by 6.9% in Greater Helsinki.
- Fallen by 4.7% elsewhere in Finland.
- Average prices per m², March 2023:
- These figures do not include new buildings.
Source: Prices of dwellings in housing companies, Statistics Finland
Investment Property: Advice, Procurement & Management
Newsec is a full service property house, providing property investors and owners with analyses, evaluations, and transaction and funding advice.
Newsec's Property Asset Management division provides expertise in real estate financial administration, and in managing properties and real estate assets.
Established in Sweden in 1994, Newsec now operates in seven market areas with a total staff of about 2,400, including over 650 top real estate professionals in Finland.
- Sales, purchase, funding and investment strategy advice and implementation
- Rental property strategies and services, for housing and commercial properties
- Property development analysis and advice
- Assessment and advisory services for individual properties through to full investment portfolios
- Comprehensive property management services
Advice for Landlords: Finnish Landlords Association
If you intend to buy an investment apartment, the Finnish Landlords Association website has a wealth of information about investment strategies and returns, applicable law and documentation, taxation, and more. There is also a large Guides and Recommendations section.
Tax on Real Property and Rental Income
Tax on Real Property
- Transfer tax for real property is 4%. The buyer usually pays the tax
- Real estate tax is paid by the party who is the owner of the property at the beginning of the calendar year. It is set by the local municipal council and is calculated as a percentage of the taxable value of the property. Municipalities set their own tax rates within prescribed ranges. In 2023 these are:
0.93% - 2,00% for general real estate tax
0.41% - 1.00% for permanent residences
0.93% - 2,00% for other residences
2.00% - 6.00% for unbuilt sites
See Real Estate Tax Rates
- Rental income falls into the category of capital income and is assessed at the rate of 30% (34% if over €30,000)
- Landlords can claim deductions. All expenses connected with the rental operation may be deducted from gross taxable rental income. Typical expenses include housing-company maintenance charges, annual repairs, and interest paid on the loan taken out to buy the apartment
Above information is from the Finnish Tax Administration, 2023. Always check www.tax.fi for latest updates.
Commercial Property: Market Reports, Brokerage, Management, and Advice
Newsec is a full service property house providing commercial property sales and acquisition advice, valuations and analyses, brokerage services, and asset and property management services. Established in Sweden in 1994, Newsec now operates in seven market areas with a total staff of about 2,400, including over 650 top real estate professionals in Finland.
Newsec publishes Property Outlook Finland in English, with Finnish market information useful to investors as well as companies making decisions regarding location. Contents include:
- Finnish economic situation and outlook
- Finnish real estate markets and submarkets
- Real estate taxes and legislation
Current and archived versions of Property Outlook Finland are available.
Property Rental: See the Business Space page for Newsec commercial properties.
KTI Property Information
KTI is an independent information business providing information and analysis of the Finnish real estate market. Their Benchmarking, Information and Research services support the planning, steering and monitoring of key processes of the property business. KTI's publications in English, KTI Market Review and The Finnish Property Market, are tailored towards international investors and offer detailed information regarding investment in Finnish real estate. They are available for purchase or online as PDFs. Contents include:
- The Finnish economy: overview and outlook
- Institutional aspects, structure and players in the Finnish property market
- Property sectors: investment performance, market structure and practices
- Regional outlook for property markets
Swedish-originated Catella Property is a leading European transactions advisor with expertise in the Finnish commercial property market, providing valuation, advisory, brokerage, and sales & letting services. Operating Finland-wide.
Catella Property: www.catella.com/en
Links to other sites are direct to the relevant page, where possible
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