Lappeenrannan Asuntopalvelu waives the security deposit, read more

22.02.2024 | Resident story

Resident’s Committee – Working together for the common good

Resident activities provide residents with an important channel of influence and enhance the sense of community living. The responsibility for resident activities lies with the house's resident committee or contact person, of which there are nearly 50 in Lappeenrannan Asuntopalvelu properties. We dove deeper into the heart of the resident committee to find out what happens within and what kinds of channels of influence it offers to residents.

Ella Kettunen and Elina Umal are neighbors who share an enthusiasm for communal activities and a desire to improve the living comfort of their apartment building. Kettunen serves as the chair of the Orkoniitynkatu 11 resident committee, with Umal being one of its active members. Although the building’s resident committee includes the required minimum of three residents, its activities are characterized by close cooperation and dedication to common matters.

– Our small resident committee was established about 1.5 years ago, after the completion of our building’s extensive HVAC renovation. It was a new beginning for the whole building, and we wanted to contribute to building a communal future, Kettunen explains.  

For both, this is their first time in resident activities, even though Kettunen has been a resident for nearly 10 years and Umal for even 15 years. The resident committee has brought them both meaningful communal activities and the opportunity to influence and improve the living comfort of their building.

– We’re both interested in the affairs of our building, and resident activities provide a functioning and official channel to have an influence. It offers a low threshold opportunity to gather, discuss common matters, and implement projects together that improve the quality of living, says Umal.  

Even with a small group, they’ve managed to organize a variety of activities. The committee has organized spring clean-ups, Christmas parties for children, and even a children’s toy election, which was met with great enthusiasm. Nine stuffed toys were acquired from a flea market, each with its own election slogan. All residents under 18 had the opportunity to vote for their favorite over the course of a week.

– Penguin, with the slogan ‘The most important things are hugs and ice cream,’ won in the first round. Now, it will serve as the toy president in the building’s clubhouse for the next four years, says Kettunen, who came up with and organized the elections.

The resident committee provides a significant opportunity to influence common matters. Official resident meetings must be held at least once a year, and all residents are invited.

– At the meetings, we can brainstorm and decide on matters together. One of the resident committee’s most important tasks is to bring residents together, share the responsibility for enjoyment, and collectively convey residents’ wishes and needs to the Asuntopalvelu, Kettunen specifies.  

Orkoniitynkatu 11’s resident committee has access to two different-sized clubrooms, which the residents themselves maintain. The committee hopes to add a striking and characterful mural to one of the rooms in the future.

Resident activities are entirely voluntary. Both interviewees encourage enthusiastic residents to join in. Through collective efforts, living can be made even better for everyone. Community and active participation bring joy and improve the quality of life for both oneself and neighbors.

Even small actions can create a great sense of community.

Ella Kettunen

Lappeenrannan Asuntopalvelu supports the activities of all resident committees with an equal annual budget and provides financial support for planting summer flowers. The resident committee decides together with the residents on how to use the funds.

The foundation of resident activities is the law on joint administration in rental buildings, which gives residents the opportunity to be informed about the building’s affairs and influence their living situation. The building’s resident meeting can elect a resident committee or contact person to manage common affairs. The meeting can also prepare, negotiate, and give statements on budget proposals, repairs, and building maintenance.