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Finding a home in Switzerland

Updated on November 28, 2023

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?

The challenges of high property prices lead to most expats choosing to rent instead of buying a home directly after arriving in Switzerland. Nevertheless, buying a home also offers various benefits and therefore is worth to consider as an option.

Buying residential property

If you decide to buy an apartment or house, you should take your time in choosing where to settle. Due to the good network, a relocation provider can be very helpful in finding the proprietary that best suits your wishes and needs. Regarding the funding, there is the possibility of taking out a mortgage which could run up to 25 years with conditions around 0.8%-1.8% interest (July 2020) depending on the mortgage duration. Therefore, buying your own property can be an interesting investment for a secured and 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 private rented property is high, which makes it difficult especially in cities to find a desirable property for rent in Switzerland.

Just like in other parts of the world, most Swiss properties for rent and sale are nowadays advertised online. You may check portals like www.immoscout24.ch or www.homegate.ch, newspapers or work with a relocation provider. Due to the long experience, they usually have good connections with landlords and get to know in advance which apartments will be for rent, already before they are announced publicly.

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.

After having received an acceptance of the landlord, you can prepare yourself for moving in. Usually, there is the requirement to pay rental deposit as security for your landlord. 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.


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? We can help you with this process. Contact us for a personal consultation.

Evgeniy Timoshenko

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

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