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How to find a home in Switzerland

Updated on May 30, 2024

If you are planning to immigrate to Switzerland, you should already in advance plan where to stay. That process takes time and effort, so it is advisable to work with a relocation provider who will help you with the whole process.

Should you rent or buy a home?

Due to high property prices, most expats chose to rent instead of buying a home directly after arriving in Switzerland. Nevertheless, buying a home does offer various benefits and is therefore worth considering.

Buying residential property

If you decide to buy an apartment or house, you should take your time in choosing where to settle. A relocation provider can be very helpful in finding the property that best suits your needs. If you can secure a suitable mortgage interest rate, buying your own property can be an interesting investment for a carefree future in Switzerland.

Renting a property

If you decide to rent a home when moving to Switzerland from abroad, there are various factors to take into consideration. The demand for rental property is high, which makes apartment hunting difficult, especially in city centers. 

Most Swiss properties for rent or sale are nowadays advertised online. You may check portals like immoscout24 or homegate, newspapers, or work with a relocation provider. Due to their long experience, they usually have good connections with landlords and get to know in advance which apartments will be for rent.

When applying for a home, you are usually required to submit your wage statement and an extract from the debt register together with the application. The extract can be ordered online or at a debt enforcement office.

Once a landlord accepts your application, you can prepare to move in. Usually, there is the requirement to pay a rental deposit as security. This rental deposit often amounts up to three months’ rent. Concluding a rental deposit insurance with an insurance company can help to cover this financial burden. In addition to this, this insurance gives you and the landlord more security through damage coverage by the insurance, the termination is easy and the refund of the deposit often works faster than by conventional means.

General information

We suggest you to conclude a liability insurance - it protects you from financial consequences in case of damage caused to third parties (water damage to the neighbours, losing the key if you rent the apartment, fire at home, and so on). Furthermore, taking out a household insurance is a good choice to also insure your own movable household such as your furniture, bicycles and more. Usually, this insurance secures you against theft outside as well. Besides this, you can additionally insure your electronic devices, your luggage and other personal belongings.

Regarding the rental price, there is another point to consider: It always includes additional costs. They usually cover the expenses for the caretaker, the heating and water. Not included in these additional costs are the costs for electricity, internet, waste disposal charge and the SERAFE charge (annual TV/radio costs).

Are you planning to rent or buy an accommodation in Switzerland or are you interested in a personal insurance solution? Have you already found an apartment, and now need to insure your household? We can help you with this process. Contact us for a personal consultation.

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Evgeniy Timoshenko

Do you have any questions? Get in touch with me.

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