Financial Aid for Students in Finland

The KELA Financial Aid for Students

The KELA financial aid for students is mainly for Finnish citizens only. A non-Finnish is allowed to receive the KELA financial aid if he/she fulfills the below mentioned conditions-
  • He/She is registered as a permanent resident of Finland in the population information system and
  • The purpose of being in Finland is not studies. 
If you are in Finland for attending an educational institution, in that case, you are not eligible to apply for the KELA financial aid.

Nordic Countries Nationals

Such citizens are eligible for the KELA financial aid in Finland if:
  • They have registered their residence as per the agreed way between the Nordic countries and also the purpose of being in Finland is not attending an educational institution. 
  • You are a family member of a national of another Nordic country and your residence in Finland has been registered or you possess a residence card
**If you were accepted to a Finnish educational institution afore registering in Finland and you have no other motive for living in Finland, you are not eligible for financial aid.

Citizens of Other EU countries or of Switzerland or Liechtenstein

Such countries students are eligible for financial aid if:
  • They have registered their residence in Finland and they are in Finland not for study purpose, or
  • If you are a family member of a citizen of another EU country or of Switzerland or Liechtenstein and your residence in Finland has been registered based on your status as a family member or you have a residence card.
Basis of Registration of residence in Finland can be:
  • Job or self-employment in Finland. You are required to present an employment/self-employment proof. It can be an employment certificate or documentation from employer, or a statement related to self-employment.
  • You and your family have adequate funds and, wherever needed, can present health insurance cover evidence.  

Citizens of Other Countries

Citizens of other countries who have been granted a permanent or continuous residence permit or an EC residence permit issued to citizens of third countries having resided in Finland for a considerable amount of time are eligible for financial aid. 
The residence permit must show one of the following three abbreviations-
  •  P: stands for permanent residence permit
  • A: stands for continuous residence permit
  • P-EY: stands for EC residence permit
If you possess a temporary residence permit (B), which is issued to pupils and other individuals, you are not permitted to receive financial aid.

Types of Financial Aid

The student financial aid is provided to financially help the students to manage their study-related expenses. Financial aid is provided to the students in the following forms:
  • Study Grant
  • Housing Supplement and
  • Government guarantee for student loans
The study grant, housing supplement and government guarantee for student loans must be applied for from KELA. The KELA pays the study grant and housing supplement into the bank account of the students directly on a monthly basis

Students can get the above mentioned financial aid if he/she:
  • Have obtained admission into a higher education institution
  • Is a full-time student
  • You are studying in an upper secondary school
  • Possess satisfactory study progress
  • In need of financial help

Amount of Financial Aid

The amount of financial aid varies depending on the educational institution enrolled at. 

Study Grant (opintoraha)

Study Grant is a government financed benefit, which is paid at the student’s bank account every month till the duration of the study. It can be paid from the commencement of the month following your 17th birthday. The study grant amount depends on:
  • Age
  • Housing conditions
  • Marital status
  • School
  • Date of studies started at higher education institution 
  • Parents' income
The study grant is subject to tax.

Housing Supplement (asumislisa)

Student can be given a Housing Supplement for a period of their studies. You are eligible for the housing supplement if you are:
  • Student
  • Do not have children
  • Living in a rented or owner-occupied accommodation
If the students share accommodation, then each should apply for Housing Supplement as per their share of the rent.

Amount: Housing supplement includes 80% of the rent. The maximum amount of the Housing Supplement is 201.60 euro per month. If the accommodation you stay in is owned by or rented from your parent, the maximum housing supplement you can receive is 58.87 Euro per month. 

Individuals who do not qualify for housing supplement can apply for the General Housing Allowance. 

General Housing Allowance: 

Low-income households are qualified to obtain General Housing Allowance.  It is provided either for the full home or for a part of it.  The amount and eligibility for the allowance depends upon:
  • Number of people in the household
  • Size of the home
  • Location, year in which the building was made and heating system of the home
  • Household's monthly income before taxes
  • Household's assets

Government Guarantee for Student Loans (opintolainan valtiontakaus)

The government also guarantees student loans. The loans themselves are provided by banks. Financial aid is granted from the start of the month in which the application for financial aid was received by Kela or your educational institution.  Students can apply for loans for the entire duration of their studies. After you have been granted a loan guarantee, you must contact a bank of your choice and agree the loan terms. The bank is informed by Kela of the loan guarantee details. Students below 18 years of age are required to possess a power of attorney and the written consent of a legal guardian in order to apply for a loan. The loans must be paid back after completion of the studies. 

Eligibility

Student who have received a Study Grant or adult education subsidy are eligible for government loan guarantee without application.

If the student has not received a Study Grant, they can still get the loan guarantee if:
  • He/she is between 18 and 19 years of age, and is not qualified to get the Study Grant on the basis of their parents' income
  • He/she is below 17 years of age, lives on their own, and is not qualified to get the Study Grant on the basis of their entitlement to the Child Benefit.
Amount of loan guaranteed: It depends on the age of the pupil and the level of education pupil is pursuing. 

Application Procedure

Fill out an application form OT 10e for the student financial aid. Click here for the form. You can fill this form online also at KELA official website. Submit the necessary documents as well as mentioned in the form. 
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