Finnish youth find themselves living in care homes to avoid high house prices

Finnish youth find themselves living in care homes to avoid high house prices

Finland’s housing market stands as an expensive proposition for those looking to get onto the property ladder.

Independent living is a challenge for young people in the country, so much so that measures have been put in place to assist them, particularly in the capital Helsinki.

The Rudolf Seniors Care Home costs around half as much as common apartments in the city. This difficulty to afford a place to live mostly affects those under 25 and as the average rent for properties have increased, more and more people have been seeking alternative options for accommodation.

  Credit: Pexels

Credit: Pexels

Over the last few years, it has been reported that several young people stay in care homes for cheaper rent prices; in return, they give company and provide care for the elderly population living within them.

Recently, this agreement has turned into a pilot program called “A Home that Fits” to give both age groups some benefits.

The goal is to give every young person a place to call home by 2018 which also involves the conversion of empty city spaces into more affordable housing. Conceived by the Finnish Youth Housing Association and supported by Helsinki’s Youth Department, the project aims to bring positive change to entire neighborhoods.

Since the scheme began, four cities in Finland have been undertaking similar initiatives and other countries such as the Netherlands and some parts of the U.K. are also considering similar options.

By compensating for their stay by working with the elderly, young people are contributing in many ways to society in Finland.

Some staff at the care homes have praised their support recently. Kristiina Stenman, a social worker at the Rudolf Care Home, said: “The youngsters have brought an energy and positive spirit into the place with them. It is a very simple model that would be easy to spread to other countries.”

With 2018 quickly approaching, the scheme for young and old may yet make some positive steps toward solving the problem of unaffordable housing for young people.

Cover photo credit: Pexels

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