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Old 25.04.2015, 15:58
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What's a good salary in Zurich...

I am the main 'breadwinner' and was offered a job in Baar - 130,000/ year. If we move we would like to live in Zurich which means commuting. I have a two year old child who will need to go into the krippe, and my partner does not earn that well (works from home). At the moment we live in Germany and we manage to have a very good standard of living because Germany can be cheap (to start with, child care is practically free...). I really need help here - do you think that 130,000 a year in Zurich for a family is a good deal? Many thanks!
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Old 25.04.2015, 16:01
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

Had a search of the forum, where this exact kind of question has been answered 1000 times?
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Old 25.04.2015, 16:03
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

How much do you get in Germany? No, not really worth it for a family, unless you live in Baar, then it might be doable. The expense of Zurich apartments, childcare availablity and price in Zurich, the expense, hassle and time of commute, plus higher taxes in Zurich. Unless of course you are on 40K Euros or something in Germany...
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Old 25.04.2015, 16:42
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

Hello Marlene,

The average salary in Zurich is around CHF9000; this is heavily skewed due to those with bonkers income. Reality is far different for most. Your salary is above this average: consider yourself wealthy.

Hope this helps. Welcome to the English Forum.
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Old 25.04.2015, 20:09
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

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How much do you get in Germany? No, not really worth it for a family, unless you live in Baar, then it might be doable. The expense of Zurich apartments, childcare availablity and price in Zurich, the expense, hassle and time of commute, plus higher taxes in Zurich. Unless of course you are on 40K Euros or something in Germany...
Are you saying to her that 130K is not worth it? Zurich has higher Taxes? Either you are taking the piss, or all I have learned the last couple of months is wrong...
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Old 25.04.2015, 20:15
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

Live in Baar where it's a wonderful place to raise a family and taxes are the lowest in the country and save yourself the commute and the high expenses.

130k in Baar is more than enough for a very good life. Of course, we don't know how much you made in Germany to compare lifestyles.

I assume you're in Glencore?
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Old 25.04.2015, 20:24
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

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Are you saying to her that 130K is not worth it? Zurich has higher Taxes? Either you are taking the piss, or all I have learned the last couple of months is wrong...
130K is an above average Swiss salary and will likely afford a nice Swiss lifestyle. The question, though, is how will this Swiss lifestyle compare to the OP's German one. For instance, large freestanding house with garden vs. 4 room flat, car, childcare, etc.

For folks who come to Switzerland from countries with lower wages but higher purchasing power - especially when it comes to housing - even a good Swiss salary can mean adjusting materially downwards.

But then there are the 'quality of life' intangibles to add into the equation. Perhaps what Switzerland offers in this respect will outweigh whatever (if any) material adjustments she might have to make - for many they do. QoL is a personal measurement, one only the OP can make for herself.

The best advice I was given was not to try to replicate my US lifestyle - that would be impossible - but to learn to enjoy a good 'Swiss' life.
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Old 25.04.2015, 20:27
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

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130K is an above average Swiss salary and will likely afford a nice Swiss lifestyle. The question, though, is how will this Swiss lifestyle compare to the OP's German one. For instance, large freestanding house with garden vs. 4 room flat, car, childcare, etc.

For folks who come to Switzerland from countries with lower wages but higher purchasing power - especially when it comes to housing - even a good Swiss salary can mean adjusting materially downwards.

But then there are the 'quality of life' intangibles to add into the equation. Perhaps what Switzerland offers in this respect will outweigh whatever (if any) material adjustments she might have to make - for many they do. QoL is a personal measurement, one only the OP can make for herself.

The best advice I was given was not to try to replicate my US lifestyle - that would be impossible - but to learn to enjoy a good 'Swiss' life.
That's actually a very good answer! Spot on!
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Old 25.04.2015, 20:55
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

I have not even half of that salary i live quite well.

yes I know I have no family. But can easy afford my car, an apartment and holidays...
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Old 25.04.2015, 21:05
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

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The best advice I was given was not to try to replicate my US lifestyle - that would be impossible - but to learn to enjoy a good 'Swiss' life.
The opposite is true as well, for example when my daughter made a truffle risotto in the US.

And when I go to vacation in the US, and spend more for food than here.

Tom
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Old 25.04.2015, 22:50
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

Dear all,

Thank you very much for your help; it is always more useful to get ‘live’ responses than to read through old posts – what was worth for 2008 may not apply in 2015.

I thought that perhaps it would be useful to give more details regarding my current situation. Currently I am on 60.000 Euros, with this I have a salary of approximately 3000 Euros a month (after tax and after health insurance).

I live in Berlin in a leafy upmarket neighbourhood. We have a three-room apartment in a turn of the century building of 90 square meters and we pay 1100 Euros a month all costs included (gas, electricity and hausgeld).

There is plenty of good quality childcare provision in my neighbourhood and my child’s krippe is a 15 minute walk from home. Childcare provision is nearly for free in Berlin.

I do not need a car, public transport is excellent. I pay 80 Euros for a monthly subscription for Berlin public transport and it takes me 35 minutes to get to the office. Finally I am the main breadwinner.

So I guess my question was – can I have a similar lifestyle on 130,000 in Zurich, not as a single person but as a family of 3? It may be good career wise but I need to weight the lifestyle advantages and disadvantages.

Again, huge thanks for your time in replying, much appreciated!
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Old 26.04.2015, 01:08
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

Just keep in mind that the cost of kinderkrippe starts from 2000 chf a month; rent in zürich or suburbs for similar conditions you had in Berlin the same, add in health insurance etc etc.
You can manage well but you'll not be saving a lot.
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Old 27.04.2015, 17:14
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

You can use this site to get an approximation of the netto salary you'll get out of those 130k: http://www.lohncomputer.ch/

Inputting some guessed-up data about yourself gives me ~8500chf netto. Deduct aprox:
- 2000 for a similar flat (not in ZH though, but a village close-by)
- 600 for health insurance (for the whole family)
- 200 for tv/internet/telephone
- 250 for commuting to Baar (train abo)
- 700 for food (without eating out)
- 1000 for unexpected expenses

If I didn't forget something crucial, that would leave you with 3750chf disposable income. I suppose a part of that will go towards furnishing the apartment in the beginning. What you do with the rest and if you consider you can use it towards a similar (or better) lifestyle...only you can judge. My personal opinion is that you could have a pretty good life on that salary

l.e.: ah, forgot the krippe, deduct 2k, which leaves you with 1750chf in hand.
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Old 27.04.2015, 17:16
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

they seem to be employing a lot of people at the moment
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Old 27.04.2015, 17:31
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

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You can use this site to get an approximation of the netto salary you'll get out of those 130k: http://www.lohncomputer.ch/

Inputting some guessed-up data about yourself gives me ~8500chf netto. Deduct aprox:
- 2000 for a similar flat (not in ZH though, but a village close-by)
- 600 for health insurance (for the whole family)
- 200 for tv/internet/telephone
- 250 for commuting to Baar (train abo)
- 700 for food (without eating out)
- 1000 for unexpected expenses

If I didn't forget something crucial, that would leave you with 3750chf disposable income. I suppose a part of that will go towards furnishing the apartment in the beginning. What you do with the rest and if you consider you can use it towards a similar (or better) lifestyle...only you can judge. My personal opinion is that you could have a pretty good life on that salary

l.e.: ah, forgot the krippe, deduct 2k, which leaves you with 1750chf in hand.

This one might be a bit tough for a family of 3 (albeit the 2 year old doesn't eat a lot), coming out to about 3 francs per person per meal. It is doable, but it will take some skill and lack some variety or enjoyment over time--most likely a big step down from what you are used to.
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Old 27.04.2015, 18:06
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

I earn much less than that, and I had my child in full time kinderkrippe when I moved here too. Luckily though I had no spouse to support (which means lower taxes).
If your spouse is happy to work part-time or not at all you will save considerably on your outgoings. In Zurich you can get a subsidy for childcare costs, but as it is based on income I do not think you will be eligable (based solely on your salary, if you spouse was working too you definitely would earn too much as a household). Full time krippe was 2K a month, and it has risen.

HTH

p.s. dead jealous, I would love to earn that much
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Old 27.04.2015, 18:25
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

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I really need help here - do you think that 130,000 a year in Zurich for a family is a good deal? Many thanks!
I think it is quite a good sum actually, even in Zurich. Off course you have to spent judiciously, but that is true for all salaried employees irrespective of your salary.

However is it a good deal? I can't say, considering the life style you might be having in Germany. If I were you, I would have moved and tried to stay in Baar.

Regards
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Old 27.04.2015, 19:16
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Re: What's a good salary in Zurich...

So you are all used to a flat, and not running a car. In that case, I would say yes you can, but you would be better off to live in Baar. Possibly your husband should give up his job and look after the kid. Factor a 3k chf monthly break even salary from your husband to make it worth while him not looking after the kid. 5kchf for two kids, to cover childcare and transport, meals, trips, etc.
This is what I worked out for Baar in 2011. Doubt it is cheaper now.

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Dear all,

Thank you very much for your help; it is always more useful to get ‘live’ responses than to read through old posts – what was worth for 2008 may not apply in 2015.

I thought that perhaps it would be useful to give more details regarding my current situation. Currently I am on 60.000 Euros, with this I have a salary of approximately 3000 Euros a month (after tax and after health insurance).

I live in Berlin in a leafy upmarket neighbourhood. We have a three-room apartment in a turn of the century building of 90 square meters and we pay 1100 Euros a month all costs included (gas, electricity and hausgeld).

There is plenty of good quality childcare provision in my neighbourhood and my child’s krippe is a 15 minute walk from home. Childcare provision is nearly for free in Berlin.

I do not need a car, public transport is excellent. I pay 80 Euros for a monthly subscription for Berlin public transport and it takes me 35 minutes to get to the office. Finally I am the main breadwinner.

So I guess my question was – can I have a similar lifestyle on 130,000 in Zurich, not as a single person but as a family of 3? It may be good career wise but I need to weight the lifestyle advantages and disadvantages.

Again, huge thanks for your time in replying, much appreciated!
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