Advantages of owning your home
If you already have regular income and some savings, it is worthwhile considering buying your own home. Owning your own home means more responsibility, but you can also benefit from the potential rise in the value of your home.
The monthly costs of a loan may be fairly even with the cost of a monthly rent. When you are living in a home you own, you pay ‘rent’ to yourself, and each amortisation means saving towards your future. In addition, the Finnish state currently supports housing loan borrowers, and you can deduct housing loan interest in your taxation.
As a home owner you have more responsibility, but also more rights. You can live in your home as long as you like without having to wonder when your landlord might terminate your rental agreement. As a home owner, you can decorate as much as you wish. For larger renovations, you will need a permit from the housing company and possibly a building permit.
Your monthly costs are determined according to your loan as well as different charges. Even if you own your home, you must pay for certain things, such as water and the use of the housing company’s sauna. You should also take into account that as an owner you will have to participate in the housing company's renovation costs. For example, the costs of façade or pipe renovations will be graded to the housing company's shareholders according to the square metres of their home.
The housing company can take out a loan for the renovations of which you will pay your share, as part of the maintenance charge, for example.
Advantages of renting
If you are a student or you do not have regular income, renting is a sensible alternative. The financial risk related to renting is often smaller, as you are not liable, for example, for renovations made by the housing company. And if the stove or the fridge breaks down, it is the landlord's responsibility to change them. In a rental home you may also be eligible for general housing subsidy - find out more from Kela (The Social Insurance Institution of Finland).
However, there are often long queues for rental homes and the rents may be high. You also cannot change the colour of the walls just like that, as you will need permission from your landlord. If you are dreaming about buying a home of your own in the future, start saving at an early stage.