Finland to kick-start renovation work on residential buildings

New fund for upgrading residential buildings designed to encourage investments worth EUR 1 billion, with a focus on the suburbs.

The government of Finland is proposing to establish a start-up fund of EUR 115 million for upgrading residential buildings as a measure to speed up renovation work and boost employment in the construction sector. According to Pia Viitanen, Minister of Housing and Communications, the funding could kick-start investments worth EUR 1 billion in renovation projects which would otherwise be delayed. This would also create work for about 16 000 people.

The proposed funding would be available for renovation work carried out on residential buildings owned by housing cooperatives and the housing stock of ARA, The Housing Finance and Development Centre of Finland. The state funding would be administered by ARA.

Renovation worth EUR 1.9 billion annually

“In particular, the housing stock from the 1960s and 1970s has reached the age where major renovation work is essential. Many of these homes consist of state-subsidized rental accommodation located in the suburbs,” says Viitanen. She encourages municipalities and housing cooperatives to actively make use of the funds to catch up with overdue renovation work.

The total requirement for renovation work on Finland’s building stock is estimated to be worth EUR 20–50 billion, of which residential buildings make up more than half. The renovation of the housing stock is estimated to be worth EUR 1.9 billion annually during the period 2016–2025. Minister Viitanen has also established a working group with the task of proposing funding and subsidy models that will focus particularly on renovation work in the suburbs in 2015–2025.

Source: Ministry of the Environment