Pastel colored facades of the houses on Huvilakatu

Housing

Apply for housing as soon as you can, and generally stay ahead of the logistical stuff when planning your move over. -U.S Student Grantee 2014-2015

It is very important to settle all housing matters well in advance, and if possible, to have these matters taken care of before you depart from the U.S. Also, please note that the Fulbright Finland Foundation does not organize housing for grantees.

Core Scholars, Distinguished Chairs, and Specialists

Core Fulbright scholars, Distinguished chairs, and Specialist Program participants should have their lodgings arranged by their respective host institutions. Any necessary or special requirements should be clarified at the time of applying. If this is not the case, please contact your host as soon as possible, prior to arrival. Fulbright Finland provides the housing for the Bicentennial Chair.

MCPD and Teacher grantees

The MCPD grantees, the Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching grantees, and students must arrange their own housing. The host institution is not responsible for arranging housing for the grantee (although in some cases they may do so). If you need assistance with locating housing, the host institution should be able to advise you on possible contacts.

Students

Apply early! Apply for housing immediately after you have received your student status confirmation from your university. Please note that the housing situation for students has been extremely difficult over the past few years. Housing applications are processed on a first-come first-serve basis. Therefore, applying early is essential!

You will see further down this page that we have collected many website links that will help you in your search for housing. We also strongly recommend that you contact the Foreign Student Advisor or International Coordinator at your host institution for more information on student housing.

All students are responsible for their own housing arrangements. In practice, most grantees live in student housing. Housing for students is organized by Student Housing Foundations such as with HOAS in Helsinki and TOAS in Tampere, etc. The various Students’ Unions, Student Nations, and some universities may also provide student lodgings. Unfortunately, the student housing situation has been extremely tight over the past few years in most Finnish cities.

Aerial view of houses in Eira part of Helsinki
Monthly rent in Finnish cities varies, for instance the prices of a single HOAS room start from 389€ per month in Helsinki, from 190€ in Tampere (TOAS) and 170€ in Oulu (PSOAS).
“Students should be aware of attitudes toward communal life, which can be a total shock to those coming from the U.S., where rampant sharing is the rule rather than the exception. In general, HOAS Finnish flatmates are civil and polite but do not expect to be friends with each other and often just leave each other alone. Each flatmate is expected to provide his/her own things and no type of sharing is taken for granted. For example, in my apartment everyone had their own roll of toilet paper and own bottle of dish detergent, and God forbid I should touch their food in the refrigerator. I actually like this system because you don’t have to worry about flatmates who leech all your stuff, or wonder whose rightful turn it is to buy how much toilet paper.”

“Explore housing options as early as possible. Apply to HOAS, but also check out the alternatives. By doing this, the grantee can find accommodation that works for his/her budget and desired location.”

“Living in student housing was extremely beneficial as I was able to have initial friendships form quite easily.”

Private Housing Options

Some students choose to live in private housing, and in order to secure your lodgings in advance, you should also apply for housing from the private market. Please see the following list given below to further explore private housing options.

It is recommended that you contact the Foreign Student Advisor at your host institution to find out whether or not assistance with housing arrangements is available, but please note that your host institution is under no obligation to assist you with alternative/private housing arrangements. Also note that rent costs can be very high, especially in the Helsinki area, and suitable private housing may be very difficult to find. Furthermore, please keep in mind that the Fulbright Finland Foundation does not organize housing for grantees.

Resources for House Hunting

General Accommodation Information

Good Places to Start

  • Real Estate Agent: Huoneistokeskus
  • Real Estate Agent: Kiinteistömaailma
  • Real Estate Agent: Vuokraturva
  • Real Estate Agent: Céline Relocation Services
  • Real Estate Agent: Sato Oy
  • Real Estate Agent: Lumo-vuokrakodit
  • Nation Wide Listings (in Finnish): TA.fi
  • Nation Wide Listings (in Finnish): Oikotie
  • Nation Wide Listings (in Finnish): Data Base
  • Nation Wide Listings: Youth Housing
  • Student Housing Help (Turku, Tampere, Helsinki: Asuntohelppi (the website is in Finnish, but you can email/call the company in English and ask for instructions on how to apply for housing through them. The email address is helppi(a)netti.fi and phone number +358 40 537 5210 (Mon-Sun 8:00-20:00).
  • If you are in the Helsinki region, there is also a very popular Facebook group with over 110,000+ members which may be of assistance to you. 

Renting an apartment from a private person:

Furnished apartments:

Please note that even though some of the web pages are in Finnish, you can still send out a search announcement in English! Contact the housing service directly by email and ask for assistance.

Student Housing Options:

“I lived in a dormitory style building with a bunch of international students from all over the world. It was a great experience meeting all of them and learning about Finland with other people who have never experienced it.”
U.S. Student grantee 2016-2017
 
“I really enjoyed living not on campus, and I recommend people check out opportunities to live with Finns in their community. And having the community aspect for me really helped me get outside my work bubble and engage with others in the area.”
U.S. Student grantee 2016-2017
 
“I was advised that because housing is scarce in Joensuu to just take the first thing available/offered to me. This turned out to be an exchange student housing through Elli. I would have much preferred to not share with loud, messy, exchange students in their early 20's. Its quite hard to figure out what housing is available and how true it is that housing is scarce. Also, a lot of the apartments I looked at required 1 year leases, which are too long for a Fulbright grant period. Having been here awhile I think it isn't actually as impossible to find suitable housing for a single person that isn't shared but it would have been nice to know that before arriving and getting stuck in the student apartments.”
U.S. Student grantee 2016-2017

Helsinki

University of Helsinki’s student clubs rent apartments, but the applicant has to be a member of the club in order to apply.

Hämeenlinna

Joensuu

Jyväskylä

Kemi

Kotka

Kuopio

Lahti

Lappeenranta

Mikkeli

Oulu

Rovaniemi

Savonlinna

Seinäjoki

Tampere

Turku

Vaasa