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What changes in 2022?

Cigarette prices will rise while passports will become more affordable in Finland next year.

The new year brings with it changes in administration. Image: Esa Syväkuru / Yle

The new year brings with it changes that affect the daily lives of residents in Finland. Yle compiled ten of them:

1. Household deduction limits rise—but not for home improvements

Household tax deduction limits will be increased in 2022. Image: Tiina Jutila / Yle

The maximum tax deduction amount and deduction percentage will increase for household, care and nursing work in 2022. A household tax deduction is also available for anyone who stops using oil to heat their home.

The maximum deduction will increase from 2,250 euros to 3,500 euros.

For renovation work, the household deduction will remain unchanged.

2. Mortgage interest deduction limits decrease

In 2022, five percent of one's mortgage interest will be tax deductible, instead of the current 10 percent.

This tax break is expected to disappear entirely in 2023.

3. Price of tobacco rises

Image: Petteri Juuti / Yle

The tobacco tax will increase at the beginning of the year and again in July. Further increases will take place in 2023.

As a result, tobacco prices are expected to rise by an average of 11 percent, making the average price of a pack of cigarettes just above ten euros.

4. Students can earn more without losing benefits

The income threshold affecting students' eligibility for financial support will go up 25 percent. The income limit per month will rise to 870 euros, from the current 696 euros.

The limit increase is valid for 2022 only.

5. Garrisons get their own polling stations

Image: Kimmo Rauatmaa / Lehtikuva

Garrisons around Finland will have access to their own ballot boxes in the January regional elections. Garrisons will organise special polling stations where conscripts can cast their votes.

This voting arrangement was temporarily used in the 2021 municipal elections. In the past, institutional polling stations have only been set up in hospitals and prisons.

6. Consumer protection for digital content expands

At the stroke of midnight, the Consumer Protection Act will be supplemented with provisions for the supply, error or alteration of digital content and services. The new regulations apply to software, digital games and cloud services, among other things.

In the past, there has been no clear regulation for errors or delays within digital content.

7. Passports become more affordable, gun permits more expensive

Police license fees are changing to better reflect the cost of issuing them.

The price of a passport will decrease from 58 to 50 euros if the application is filed at the police department. The price of an electronically filed passport application remains unchanged at 44 euros.

The price of a gun permit issued by the local police will increase from 90 to 105 euros.

8. The taxation of electric cars changes

Image: Seppo Ahava / Yle

New electric cars are no longer subject to a car tax on purchase. Instead, the vehicle tax on electric cars will be increased by 65 euros a year.

The car tax exemption applies to cars whose first tax assessment date is on or after October 1, 2021.

9. Cancer screenings broaden

More Finnish residents will be entitled to free cancer screenings. Bowel cancer screenings will start nationwide for men and women aged 60-68. The project has already been piloted in 12 municipalities.

Cervical cancer screenings, in turn, will now apply to 30 to 65-year-olds. Previously, screenings ended at 60 in most municipalities. All 65-year-olds will now have access to screenings, regardless of their place of residence.

10. Right-of-Occupancy housing system reformed

The Right-of-Occupancy Housing Act will be reformed to further empower residents to have a bigger say in how their property is run.

One of the changes means that, from now on, at least 40 percent of the members of a homeowner’s association’s board of directors must also be residents of the property.

There are about 50,000 right-of-occupancy dwellings in Finland. The system has been in use for 30 years.

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