Finland is off the radar for many but it has some of the best quality of life in Europe. This tiny European country has a population of approximately 5.5 million. The government has one of the highest per capita incomes in Western Europe, almost as high as Sweden and the Netherlands. Hence, it’s not surprising to learn that many people want to move to Finland due to its stable economy and good job opportunities.
In cities like Helsinki, you can find a well-paid English-speaking position. However, before relocating to another place, you must consider different factors, such as the cost of living and how much you can make there.
In 2022, the average monthly salary in Finland is €3,620 or €43,440 annually. Employees have about €2,700 left after taxes. If you earn above €3,500 per month, you are decently paid in Finland. In the private sector, earnings averaged at €3,681 a month. While in state-owned organisations, you can expect about €3,207 – €4,009 per month.
About 33% of Finland’s GDP comes from international trade. The country’s top exports are metals, chemicals, machinery, electronics, and transport equipment. Although Finland’s economy is doing quite well at present, its aging population threatens the country’s efficiency and focus for the long term. As a result, people are working longer, and more expats are joining Finland’s labor force.
Read on to learn more about working, living, and earning in Finland.
What is considered a good salary in Finland?
A good salary for Finland starts from €2,700 after-tax per month. This corresponds to annual gross wage of €43,440.
There are many reasons why one would want to relocate to Finland. First is its high quality of life. According to the social progress index of 2021, Finland is the second-best country in the world regarding quality of life.
Another reason to relocate to Finland is that it consistently ranks as one of the happiest countries in the world. As of the latest world happiness report, Finland ranks as the happiest country in the world, followed by Denmark, Switzerland, Iceland, and Norway.
But, what is a good salary to enjoy living in Finland?
According to Statista Finland, the average monthly salary in 2022 is around €2,700 net of taxes. It is significantly greater than the minimum wage and is sufficient for a person to live a satisfactory life in the country. To get this amount, you need to find a job with an annual gross payment of €51,000.
As from the Finland Prices source, a single person’s monthly costs amount to €1,574 or €18,888 per year. This amount grows more extensive if you are a family of four. It costs €4,742 per month or €56,904 per year to live in Finland for a two-parent, two-child family.
The calculation includes a two-room apartment rental payment, a car loan payment, utilities, groceries, entertainment, and a two-week vacation once a year.
If you want to know what jobs you can earn the average amount to live a comfortable life in Finland, here is a table from the Wage Centre that shows the average salary in Finland by sector of the economy:
|Industry||EUR per hour|
|Information and communications||25|
|Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning||23.82|
|Financial and insurance activities||22.04|
|Professional and scientific and technical activities||21.91|
|Mining and quarrying||20.2|
|Public administration and defense||20.15|
|Real estate operations||18.99|
|Water, wastewater and waste management||17.84|
|Transportation and storage||16.89|
|Health care and social work||16.12|
|Arts, entertainment and recreation||16.08|
|Wholesale and retail trade||15.94|
|Agriculture, forestry and fishing||15.76|
|Accommodation and food||13.96|
|Administrative and support services||13.59|
Moreover, here are some facts about working in Finland that may help you in your job hunt:
1. Traditionally, Finland’s job market has been dominated by manufacturing, and its main exports are machinery, paper, wood products, electrical equipment, optical equipment, and vehicles.
2. In recent years, tech and IT have grown to become the country’s largest industry, considered one of Europe’s top tech hubs. In addition, Nokia, which dominated the early days of mobile phones and now focuses on network equipment, software, technology, and services, represents over half of Finnish exports.
3. Popular graduate jobs in Finland are in the following industries:
- Machinery and Specific Instruments
4. Finland’s service sector employs over 65% of its workforce. In particular, skilled workers are in high demand in the following jobs:
- Restaurant professionals
- Finance and accounting staff
5. There are skill shortages in the following jobs, so these roles are in very high demand:
- Auto mechanic
- Business consultant
- Kindergarten teacher
- General practitioner
- Technological engineer
- Electrical engineer
- Speech therapist
6. Men earn 5.8% more than women in Finland.
7. Finnish and Swedish are Finland’s two main official languages. Swedish is the first language of only 10% of Finland’s population but is spoken most on the southern and western coasts. In addition, there are some minority languages, including Romani, Sami, and Finnish Sign Language.
You’ll need a good command of Finnish to work in most sectors in Finland. You need to learn the language to succeed professionally, integrate into society, and for your safety.
Depending on your line of work, you’ll require different proficiency levels. For instance, to work in healthcare, business, or other customer-facing roles, you’ll need an excellent understanding of Finnish.
See which jobs are currently in-demand in Finland.
Example of a good salary in Finland
For instance, you found a salary that offers an average pay of €51,000. After taxes, you’ll get €32,517 annual or €2,700 monthly take-home pay. Here’s how you can spend this amount on your basic needs in Finland:
- Housing: One-bedroom apartment in the city center is €694
- Transportation: Monthly local transport ticket costs €55.8
- Utilities: Basic heating, water, and electricity for one person are €66.4
- Internet: 50 Mbps per month costs €20.8
- Groceries: €200 to €250 per month. You may find a comprehensive list of commodity prices from Finland Prices.
Healthcare isn’t on the list because once you achieve permanent residency in Finland, you are covered by state healthcare insurance (Kansaneläkelaitos KELA). You may apply for a health insurance card at the Federal Social Security Administration.
Dental isn’t included in public healthcare coverage. A visit to the dentist may cost you €10.4. You may apply for private health insurance if you don’t want to shell out money for these medical services. This type of policy supplements what the government offers and pays for the excess your state health insurance can’t cover.
For expats in Finland, we recommend private health insurance from international provider Cigna Global. Their coverage is comprehensive and inexpensive compared to many public insurances.
If you want to move to Finland and earn enough to live comfortably in the country, here are the top jobs that you should look out for:
|Job title||Monthly salary|
|Chief Executive Officer||€10,808|
|Country Manager or Director||€8,685|
|Head of Legal Department||€7,504|
|Sales Office Manager||€7,110|
|Call Center Director||€6,796|
Taxes in Finland
Residents of Finland are taxed on their worldwide income. Income earned by residents is subject to progressive tax rates for national tax purposes and a flat tax rate for municipal (and church and social security) tax purposes.
National tax rates
In 2022, earned income will be taxed at the following rates:
|Taxable income (EUR)||Tax rate (%)|
Capital (investment) income is taxed at rates of 30% and 34% (the latter rate applies to capital income exceeding EUR 30,000 per year).
Local income taxes
Municipal taxes are assessed at flat rates based on taxable income determined for municipal taxation. Depending on the municipality, the rate ranges between 16.50% and 23.50%.
Bonuses and holiday pay
Finland has holiday compensation, holiday bonuses, and holiday pay. Since they differ, it’s helpful to know what they mean.
The holiday bonus is an added bonus for employees. Finland doesn’t require it by law, but it appears in many collective agreements. It’s usually 50% of gross salary and is paid when an employee returns to work after a vacation. For example, if an employee makes €2,000 for the month, the holiday bonus is €1,000.
The holiday pay is determined after the previous holiday pay determination period. A Finnish annual vacation is calculated from the beginning of April to the end of March the following year.
The amount of holiday pay depends on the hours worked during that period. An employee who earns a monthly/weekly salary and works at least 35 hours every month earns a regular salary during holidays. Others are subject to different rules.
Compensation for unused holidays is known as holiday compensation. When an employee resigns with holidays left, the employer has to pay the compensation. At that time, the compensation is monetary.
Salaries in Finland: what is common?
Statistics Finland estimates the median total earnings of full-time wage and salary earners will be €3,228 per month in 2022, based on its Structure of Earnings statistics. Median wages and salaries for managers in the private sector were €7,200, €6,995 in the public sector, and €5,176 in local government.
Generally, the salaries range between €2,225, which is considered low, and €5,612, which is more on a higher-end. According to the existing data, the majority of Finnish employees earn between €2,700 and €4,300 gross per month (about 48% of workers).
The dispersion of managers’ salaries was most evident in the private sector, where the lowest wages (1st decile) were €4,279, and the highest salaries (9th decile) were €11,890.
The highest-earning decile among private sector managers earned at least 2.8 times more than the lowest-earning decile. The corresponding pay differentials in the central and local government sectors were 1.8 and 2.3, respectively.
Salaries also range depending on the age of the employee:
- workers under 24 years old get only €2,886 median salary
- workers of age between 25 – 34 earn a median of €3,587
- people of age between 35 – 44 get a median wage of €4,023
- employees between 45 – 54 of age get €3,789
- and employed people over 55 get paid €3,514 per month
There is also a gender pay gap in Finland. Statistics Finland analyzed salaries in comparable jobs, matching locations, and similar sectors. A difference of 5.8% was found between men’s and women’s wages in the Finnish labor market.
It was based on the total gross earnings, which includes overtime pay. Taking only regular hours into account, the difference in earnings is 5.2% to the men’s benefit.
Finland is also very open to immigrant workers. In fact, Finland develops labor migration in different ways to meet its labor demand.
In Finland, the population is aging, and the birth rate is not high enough to maintain population growth. Thus, the working-age population is declining, and some sectors lack workers. To maintain the welfare of society and to solve the problems facing the labor market, immigration is one solution.
Best paid jobs in Finland
Some of the well-paid jobs in Finland and average monthly salary before tax:
- Chief Executive Officer – 10,808 EUR
- Pilot Transport, Haulage, Logistics – 9,008 EUR
- Country Manager/Director – 8,685 EUR
- Leasing Director – 8,386 EUR
- Branch Director Top Management – 8,350 EUR
- Head of the Legal Department Management – 7,504 EUR
- Managing Director – 7,178 EUR
- Sales Office Manager – 7,110 EUR
- Personnel Manager – 6,992 EUR
- Call Centre Director – 6,796 EUR
- Production Director – 6,658 EUR
- Logistics Director – 6,614 EUR
- Professor Education, Science & Research – 6,350 EUR
- Publishing House Director – 6,303 EUR
- Doctor – 6,278 EUR
- Technical Director – 6,274 EUR
- Sales Director – 6,181 EUR
- Medical Institution Manager – 6,130 EUR
- Network Strategy Specialist – 6,051 EUR
- Solicitor, Barrister Law & Legislation – 5,998 EUR
Minimum wage in Finland in 2022
Finland, like most Scandinavian countries, has no minimum salary set by law; but you can expect to earn a net monthly wage of around €1,500 when you start work here.
Most commonly, these minimum rates are negotiated and agreed upon through collective bargaining by workers’ unions, who set the minimum salaries based on factors such as economic sector, level of education, experience, and length of employment.
Helsinki, for example, has a minimum take-home pay as low as €1,210 unless the collective agreement states otherwise.
Furthermore, these minimum salaries may differ significantly between Finland’s poorer and richer regions.
Average salary in Finland in 2022
The average net monthly salary in Finland is around €2,700 in 2022. That is a salary that is considerably greater than the minimum wage and is sufficient to live a satisfying life in the country. To earn this amount, you must find a job that pays €51,000 gross annually.
There is no set minimum wage in Finland, so you better negotiate your salary package before accepting a job. You can do this through collective bargaining.
Here’s a list of the top employers in Finland and the salary they offer:
Is 4,000 EUR before taxes a good salary for Helsinki?
According to the Average Salary Survey, the median income in Helsinki is €65,099 gross per year. After deducting tax and other mandatory deductions, you will get over €3,300. This means that if your target is €4,000 before taxes or $50,000 annual gross income, it is below the average salary. Your after-tax take-home pay if this is your gross salary is €2,755.
You may still be able to live comfortably but not extravagantly with this amount. However, the majority of it will go to your major expenses.
- Rent: Apartment (One bedroom) in City Center: €1,040
- Basic utilities: €100
- Groceries: €250
- Internet: €20.35
- Transportation: Monthly pass €65
- Eating out (5 times a week): €240
- Total: €1,715
How much do you have to earn to live comfortably in Finland?
To live comfortably in Finland, you need to aim for the average net salary of €3,000 if you are a single person. On the other hand, if you are a family of four, you need at least a net salary of €4,800.
The suggested cost of living in Finland for a single is €2,321 and €4,545 for a family of four. Here are some of the major expenses that you will cover when you relocate to Finland:
Finland has two types of housing: shares in housing companies (asunto-osake) and real estate (kiinteistö). Depending on the area, housing costs can vary greatly. In Helsinki, for example, expect to pay €1,239 per month for a one-bedroom apartment in the central location.
If you want to purchase real estate in Finland, small studio apartments (25 m2) in Helsinki city center cost about €250,000, while in Oulu they cost about €65,000.
Average grocery expenses for a single person in Finland are between €200 to €250 per month.
Eating in an inexpensive restaurant starts at €12.
A taxi ride in Finland costs €19. If you want to save more, you can get a monthly pass for only €60.
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