American moving to Finland

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tonyrusher
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2016 5:49 pm

American moving to Finland

Post by tonyrusher » Sun Jun 12, 2016 6:40 pm

So... My wife and I have started to consider a move to Finland and have started to research more deeply into what it takes and some of the road blocks we may run into. We have found that a lot of our political leanings fit as a whole with the Finnish people, and we have our children's educations to start considering and Finland's education system is boasted as being one of the best if not the best in the world, lastly my wife's Great Grandparents were Finnish citizens and she still has distant relatives in Finland. Her family here in the states has held close to their Finnish heritage and this is what first brought our interest to this possible move. We currently live in Northern Minnesota with our three children so the weather is not the concern for us but what is a concern and what some questions we have are the social aspects of the country, language, and jobs/careers. We do not speak the Finnish language which seems to be a major barrier (understandably) written about in previous posts, but would be willing to do immersive classes to help with the move. So, our first question would be do some jobs offer immersive classes if get a job? Or do we (especially my wife) need to speak the language to even be considered for a job in the first place? Is English used commonly in some of Finland's more metro areas? My wife is a Social Worker and at the top of her field in the U.S. and has started to look into Social Work jobs in Finland (which there seems to be a demand for currently). I am a Real Estate Agent, I do not have a bachelors degree but do have trade education and do have a large background in trade jobs in the construction field and would even be willing to start in a lesser job while we got acclimated. Financially we have enough money saved to be able to live and pay our bills for a couple years especially after the sale of our home in Minnesota so taking a more modest job to start is fine. I have also seen that the social aspects from the U.S. to Finland are drastically different as it seems the Finnish people are more reserved and keep to themselves where as in the U.S. it tends to be the opposite. Is this true? How much of a shock will it be for us coming from the U.S.? We understand that we can't just snap our fingers and move to Finland with ease but want to be educated early on so we know what steps we need to take. Any advice or opinions are welcome as we are just getting started in this process.



American moving to Finland

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Cory
Posts: 3635
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2003 11:51 pm
Location: Turku

Re: American moving to Finland

Post by Cory » Sun Jun 12, 2016 8:50 pm

There are 1000's of posts on this board about people from the US of A moving to Finland, which address the issues you're asking about. Have you done a search using the search above and to the right?
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wolf80
Posts: 382
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 12:43 pm
Location: Helsinki

Re: American moving to Finland

Post by wolf80 » Sun Jun 12, 2016 10:18 pm

tonyrusher wrote:So, our first question would be do some jobs offer immersive classes if get a job? Or do we (especially my wife) need to speak the language to even be considered for a job in the first place? Is English used commonly in some of Finland's more metro areas? My wife is a Social Worker and at the top of her field in the U.S. and has started to look into Social Work jobs in Finland (which there seems to be a demand for currently). I am a Real Estate Agent, I do not have a bachelors degree but do have trade education and do have a large background in trade jobs in the construction field and would even be willing to start in a lesser job while we got acclimated.
Without speaking the language, which jobs do you think you could really do, realistically? Real estate, building, for all of these you need to speak the language. Social worker even more, it's completely dependend on language. Finland has a huge problem with unemployment, especially among foreigners who don't speak the language, many of which are English-native speakers. Chances of either one of you getting a job are close to zero. Reverse it and imagine the chances of finding a job as a foreigner in Minnesota without speaking English at all.
tonyrusher wrote:I have also seen that the social aspects from the U.S. to Finland are drastically different as it seems the Finnish people are more reserved and keep to themselves where as in the U.S. it tends to be the opposite. Is this true? How much of a shock will it be for us coming from the U.S.? We understand that we can't just snap our fingers and move to Finland with ease but want to be educated early on so we know what steps we need to take. Any advice or opinions are welcome as we are just getting started in this process.
If you value a social life, then don't come to Finland. If you like to speak to random strangers, don't come to Finland. If you enjoy a chat or even a barbecue with the neighbors, don't come to Finland. If you like to live so far away from your next neighbor that the chances of meeting a bear are higher then meeting your neighbors, you might fit in the Finnish countryside. If you like to live in a residential area with everybody pretending all the people around them don't exist, if you would rather fight a pack of wolves than have a stranger talk to you on the train, if you only use the staircase in your building when nobody else is in it, then you might be able to survive city-life in Finland! You have no idea how bad it will hit you!!


Rosamunda
Posts: 10609
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2004 12:07 am

Re: American moving to Finland

Post by Rosamunda » Sun Jun 12, 2016 11:29 pm

:?

So, if neither you or your wife is a Finnish citizen, and neither of you has a job here, you can only come as tourists.

www.migri.fi


tonyrusher
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2016 5:49 pm

Re: American moving to Finland

Post by tonyrusher » Mon Jun 13, 2016 12:03 am

Thank you for the responses and yes I have been doing research outside of this post and have seen sone of the roadblocks and have seen some of the other posts on this blog but wanted to see what others thought. My wife and I aren't planning on making a hasty decision and just moving without proper research or jobs. We would also look at learning and immersing ourselves into the language courses prior to making a move. We are realistic people just looking for opinions not just the answers we want to hear. Once again thanks!


Flossy1978
Posts: 1386
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 3:38 pm

Re: American moving to Finland

Post by Flossy1978 » Mon Jun 13, 2016 12:35 am

Also added to the sad, but just the truth, negative responses.

If you were to get a job, your employer needs to prove there is no one else in the entire EU who could do your job. Now, I think higher up CEOs and whatnot from abroad get past this rule. But for the commoner, like you and I and others, being in real estate and a social worker...... There is nothing "special" which no one else in the EU could do.

I do wish you good luck! But I don't think it is going to happen.


betelgeuse
Posts: 2621
Joined: Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:24 am

Re: American moving to Finland

Post by betelgeuse » Mon Jun 13, 2016 12:56 am

Flossy1978 wrote: If you were to get a job, your employer needs to prove there is no one else in the entire EU who could do your job. Now, I think higher up CEOs and whatnot from abroad get past this rule. But for the commoner, like you and I and others, being in real estate and a social worker...... There is nothing "special" which no one else in the EU could do.
The exception is much more broad.

"You may be considered to be a specialist if your work tasks are demanding and require university studies. A salary that is higher than average (gross salary of at least approximately € 3,000 per months) is also an indication of the demanding nature of your duties. "

http://www.migri.fi/working_in_finland/ ... specialist


Upphew
Posts: 9910
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 10:55 pm
Location: Lappeenranta

Re: American moving to Finland

Post by Upphew » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:11 pm

roger_roger wrote:
tonyrusher wrote:So... My wife and I have started to consider a move to Finland and have started to research more deeply into what it takes and some of the road blocks we may run into. We have found that a lot of our political leanings fit as a whole with the Finnish people, and we have our children's educations to start considering and Finland's education system is boasted as being one of the best if not the best in the world, lastly my wife's Great Grandparents were Finnish citizens and she still has distant relatives in Finland. Her family here in the states has held close to their Finnish heritage and this is what first brought our interest to this possible move. We currently live in Northern Minnesota with our three children so the weather is not the concern for us but what is a concern and what some questions we have are the social aspects of the country, language, and jobs/careers. We do not speak the Finnish language which seems to be a major barrier (understandably) written about in previous posts, but would be willing to do immersive classes to help with the move. So, our first question would be do some jobs offer immersive classes if get a job? Or do we (especially my wife) need to speak the language to even be considered for a job in the first place? Is English used commonly in some of Finland's more metro areas? My wife is a Social Worker and at the top of her field in the U.S. and has started to look into Social Work jobs in Finland (which there seems to be a demand for currently). I am a Real Estate Agent, I do not have a bachelors degree but do have trade education and do have a large background in trade jobs in the construction field and would even be willing to start in a lesser job while we got acclimated. Financially we have enough money saved to be able to live and pay our bills for a couple years especially after the sale of our home in Minnesota so taking a more modest job to start is fine. I have also seen that the social aspects from the U.S. to Finland are drastically different as it seems the Finnish people are more reserved and keep to themselves where as in the U.S. it tends to be the opposite. Is this true? How much of a shock will it be for us coming from the U.S.? We understand that we can't just snap our fingers and move to Finland with ease but want to be educated early on so we know what steps we need to take. Any advice or opinions are welcome as we are just getting started in this process.
As a real estate agent you can open your own agency and operate as trader too, but how you'd get clients and customers without convincing them in their language is different story.
Half of the staff has to have passed professional competence test, as stated by the law. So you can't just waltz in and start to push houses and apartments. Those LKV and other acronyms after agent's name aren't just for showing off. "A legalized real estate broker (abbreviated LKV) is a person who has passed the LKV examination administered by the Central Chamber of Commerce."
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Visa is for visiting, Residence Permit for residing.


leisl
Posts: 422
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2015 3:26 pm

Re: American moving to Finland

Post by leisl » Tue Jun 14, 2016 10:26 pm

Selling homes (contracts) without Finnish. Social work without Finnish. Builder's labourer without EU citizenship. Neither of you would ever be offered work :( As it is not in the employer's interest to do the red tape. Even as a specialist, how will your wife beat the Finns with the same (or better) qualifications who speak excellent English.

Maybe your wife can enrol in a Master's. Then get a residence permit for study. Then you and the children join her. It won't really fix much imo. Likely scenario is two parents out of work who burn through all their savings and still haven't enough Finnish to get any work at all. Unskilled Estonians will beat you to the cleaning/building jobs because they pick up Finnish from conversation. You won't. You = zero qualifications. Realty experience counts for nothing when the systems & markets are nothing alike. Education is valued above all. After a few years you'll wonder why people say Finland is so great. But Finland is only an education oasis for Finns.

I would recommend you do not sell your home in Minnesota. Rent it out so that you have an escape hatch. Yes you are doing your research. If your research is complete you would know that the vast majority of people in your position do not last five years here, and return from whence they came. And they all say the same things you said, make the same promises, want the same things. You'll come anyway, of course. :) So keep your chance to return.


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