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Old 30.10.2009, 05:07
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Average Cost of Living in Zurich

Hi All,

I need some help regarding the average living cost in Zurich. I m planning to move zurich in mid november. I m single therefore I think living expenses would be low for me as compared to family...

I saw some threads in which I found that 3000 CHF is enough..
Please let me know the correct figure so that I plan accordingly.
Also tell me the percentage tax on salary. Suppose If I get 4000 CHF/month then what will be the taxes I have to pay and what amount I'll get in hand after paying the taxes??

Regards,
Anurag
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Old 30.10.2009, 09:41
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Cost of living and tax rates in Zürich

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Hi All,
Hello, and welcome to English Forum Switzerland!

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I need some help regarding the average living cost in Zurich. I m planning to move zurich in mid november. I m single therefore I think living expenses would be low for me as compared to family...
Cost of living can obviously vary greatly depending on how you live. Yes, obviously it is generally lower in absolute terms (but usually relatively higher per person as some costs may be shared otherwise) for a single person compared to a whole family living together.

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I saw some threads in which I found that 3000 CHF is enough..
Yes, a small apartment or flat share in a not too-expensive part of town or a comfortable apartment on the borders or outside of town, basic services such as phone, electricity, Internet access, a public transport pass, basic health insurance, food, and the occasional other expenses will fit under that net amount. Don't expect to eat out constantly (it's quite expensive here but people do it a lot) or save a major part of it though.

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Please let me know the correct figure so that I plan accordingly.
Obviously there is no one correct figure here. This page at the Pedagogic Academy of Zürich for instance quotes ~1,500-1,800 as the general minimum monthly expenses for a student, so you can live very modestly of that. Also search the forum for other threads on the subject for more information.

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Also tell me the percentage tax on salary.
Rates of taxes (in particular income tax) are relatively low in Switzerland compared to most industrial countries. Naturally the income tax rate is not fixed but increases with income according to some tables of tax brackets, and depends on some other parameters based on some rules. The federal taxes are very low, and most of the taxes are paid at the cantonal and communal levels, however the calculation (and payment) at all levels are generally in one process.

See the "official" online tax calculator in English for the canton of Zürich, and explanation with links to the parameters, or for reference if you want to calculate yourself, the rate tables by income ranges are linked from this page in German of the Zürich tax authority. The calculator details and sums the federal, cantonal and communal taxes, which typically are all you pay as a salaried employee, and it also deduces the default obligatory "social security" (pension / unemployment & accident insurance, etc.). The default multiplier (119%) for communal tax is what you should choose if you are to live in the city of Zürich, otherwise see the multipliers for other communes in the canton (church tax is also listed if you register your confession as one of the listed churches, which is optional).

If you have any questions and the explanations referred to from the calculator are not clear to you, you can search the forum as questions on these matters came up in many threads already, or ask for clarification here if you still cannot find the answer.

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Suppose If I get 4000 CHF/month then what will be the taxes I have to pay and what amount I'll get in hand after paying the taxes??
To demonstrate, a rough calculation in a typical case of a single employed person with no other income living in the city of Zürich, based on the tables for 2009 linked from the pages mentioned above:

A 4,000 CHF per month gross salary amounts to 48,000CHF per year.
  • Out of that ~10% for social security, pension and accident insurance (AHV/BVG/etc.) are generally deducted from the paycheck directly by the employer, and are tax deductible, leaving~ 43,000 CHF per year.
  • There are other expenses generally not paid through the employer but deductible from taxes: take ~3,000 CHF for a typical basic health insurance (check out comparis.ch for the rates of various insurers) and ~1,000 CHF for various others such as public transport to work, leaving a taxable income of ~39,000CHF, per year.
  • Out of an annual taxable income of ~39,000 CHF, as a single, the federal tax will be ~200 CHF, while ~1,500 CHF go to the canton and ~1,800 CHF to the city of Zürich (119% of the cantonal rate), so the total tax will amount to ~3,500 CHF.
You will typically as a foreigner (at these levels of income, anyway) be taxed at source (Quellensteuer), so the tax authority will do an approximation for you to be directly deducted from your salary by your employer, and you may not need to actively account and pay the taxes. The difference of the approximation at that level should be rather small and could be in either direction, though as I understand it is based on the average commune tax for the canton which is lower than that of the city of Zürich, so it is likely to be in your favour.
  • So from the ~43,000 CHF salary after social security and related deductions by the employer, the tax of ~3,500 CHF will be deducted and you will be left with ~39,500 CHF a year.
That's ~3290 CHF monthly to "take home" if you are paid in 12 checks a year.

[Many employers here pay in 13 checks (11 checks on January to November and a double check on December), which can slightly change the approximation for Quellensteuer as it's done in a monthly basis, and the tax brackets will change for different months, but the basic results are similar, and you can always fill the forms for proper personal calculation of your taxes even if you don't have to, if you calculated yourself and found that you should get a return and it's worth the time and patience.

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Regards,
Anurag
Good luck and may your move to Zürich go well. You may find these fora helpful to answer your questions and get to know some of the people after your move. If you want to tell a bit about yourself, what brings you here and what you will be doing once you come, you can post an introduction in the Introductions forum.
Cheers,
-- Tom

Last edited by alsbergt; 31.10.2009 at 00:41. Reason: elaborate and clarify a bit, format tax calculation example
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Old 30.10.2009, 09:50
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

Anurag that depends what do you do, if you are from India, I presume you are going to IT, in that case they have to offer you 90K CHF minimum. 48K for IT guy seems on the lower side, how much exp, degree you have.

http://www.fragomen.com/newsresources/xprNewsDetailFrag.aspx?xpST=GlobalAlerts&news=436
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Old 01.11.2009, 04:51
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Anurag that depends what do you do, if you are from India, I presume you are going to IT, in that case they have to offer you 90K CHF minimum. 48K for IT guy seems on the lower side, how much exp, degree you have.

http://www.fragomen.com/newsresources/xprNewsDetailFrag.aspx?xpST=GlobalAlerts&news=436

Thanx for reply Sumit..I had a rough estimation of 48K but I came to know that I may get around 75K. I m a B.Tech(I.T) degree holder. Would appreciate if you can help me to know the expenses I have to manage.........
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Old 01.11.2009, 05:00
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

Try these threads:

What is the Cost of living in Zurich?
Zurich and Geneva cost of living mercer raport update
Living expenses in Switzerland for young guy
How much will I get on my hands?
Zurich: Is my salary par with Swiss IT standards
How much you really need to live in Switzerland?
Is this reasonable?
Salaries
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Old 01.11.2009, 05:20
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

Anurag

As I posted the link in my earlier post, 90 K is the minimum salary they have to offer you get a work permit in Zurich, This is by law and I guess it was passed earlier this year. So your employer has to offer you minimum 90K, as far as expenses are concerned you should be just fine with 90 K and save some too.
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Old 02.11.2009, 07:48
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Anurag

As I posted the link in my earlier post, 90 K is the minimum salary they have to offer you get a work permit in Zurich, This is by law and I guess it was passed earlier this year. So your employer has to offer you minimum 90K, as far as expenses are concerned you should be just fine with 90 K and save some too.
Hi Sumit,

Ok. Now can u please give me breakdown of the following items per month basis in CHF, assuming that I am single and I don't prefer outside food ?.

Food--
House Rent-
Internet-
Tax- (Including all type of taxes+Health Insurance)-

Also,

On what cost, a car can be bought there?
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Old 02.11.2009, 07:59
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Anurag

As I posted the link in my earlier post, 90 K is the minimum salary they have to offer you get a work permit in Zurich, This is by law and I guess it was passed earlier this year. So your employer has to offer you minimum 90K, as far as expenses are concerned you should be just fine with 90 K and save some too.
There is no such law specifying the minimum pay as 90K. If you feel otherwise,please indicate the source of the information here.Renumeration in IT depends on the experience & the technology that you are working in.
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Old 02.11.2009, 08:04
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Hi Sumit,

Ok. Now can u please give me breakdown of the following items per month basis in CHF, assuming that I am single and I don't prefer outside food ?.

Food--
House Rent-
Internet-
Tax- (Including all type of taxes+Health Insurance)-

Also,

On what cost, a car can be bought there?
Albergst has already explained in detail about your requirements.

Could you please take the trouble to have a look at the threads given by Jrspet already above & work it out yourself? If you have any specific questions which are not covered in the threads specified, feel free to post here.
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Old 02.11.2009, 08:07
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Hi Sumit,

Ok. Now can u please give me breakdown of the following items per month basis in CHF, assuming that I am single and I don't prefer outside food ?.

Food--
House Rent-
Internet-
Tax- (Including all type of taxes+Health Insurance)-

Also,

On what cost, a car can be bought there?
Assuming you are single, and you won't come back after a few posts saying you thought you were single but you aren't, here the breakdown:

Food: 200-1000 CHF depending on what you eat, and if you don't eat outside.
House rent: most singles live in 1.5-2.5 zimmers, costing between 800-2500 CHF; you can try living in houses too...but they will cost a couple of times more.
Internet: depending on speed, about 20-100 CHF and whether it is bundled with phone
Car: You tell me "on what cost, a car can be bought" in India? About 2000 CHF for an old over-used entry level car, all the way upto a million dollars for a foreign luxury car, right? Same here.

Now please show some respect to people that have responded to you in detail (jrspet and alsbergt in particular), and stop cluttering the forum with repetitive queries.

On a personal note, a warm welcome to the forum and to CH

Edit: Oops, coolcd responds faster than me :-(
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Old 02.11.2009, 08:12
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Hi All,

I need some help regarding the average living cost in Zurich. I m planning to move zurich in mid november. I m single therefore I think living expenses would be low for me as compared to family...

I saw some threads in which I found that 3000 CHF is enough..
Please let me know the correct figure so that I plan accordingly.
Also tell me the percentage tax on salary. Suppose If I get 4000 CHF/month then what will be the taxes I have to pay and what amount I'll get in hand after paying the taxes??

Regards,
Anurag
The average salary in CH is 60,000pa, which will be between 4000 and 4500 a month due to automatic compulsory deductions (deductions tend to be around 10%)

So one assumes the average person can live on the average salary, and have an average lifestyle

If you believe you can live cheaper than average then you can do well on 60k pa.
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Old 02.11.2009, 11:56
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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There is no such law specifying the minimum pay as 90K. If you feel otherwise,please indicate the source of the information here.Renumeration in IT depends on the experience & the technology that you are working in.



http://www.standort.zh.ch/internet/v...wnloadFile.pdf
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Old 20.11.2009, 07:09
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Hi Sumit,

Ok. Now can u please give me breakdown of the following items per month basis in CHF, assuming that I am single and I don't prefer outside food ?.

Food--
House Rent-
Internet-
Tax- (Including all type of taxes+Health Insurance)-

Also,

On what cost, a car can be bought there?
I hope you put more effort into work than you have in searching this forum where all the answers have been given.
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Old 20.11.2009, 08:04
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Hi Sumit,

Ok. Now can u please give me breakdown of the following items per month basis in CHF, assuming that I am single and I don't prefer outside food ?.

Food--
House Rent-
Internet-
Tax- (Including all type of taxes+Health Insurance)-

Also,

On what cost, a car can be bought there?
Anurag

I may be moving to New Delhi soon. Would you be able to tell me exactly how much the following will cost me (assuming I have a wife who hates leaving a balance in her savings account, and two rapidly growing kids).

a) a 'nice' 3 bedroom house in a nice part of town.

b) food. (we eat everything ... and yes we'll eat out a lot)

c) a big car.

d) and of course taxes. all kinds. everything. just give me a lumpsum number... i hate details.
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Old 02.12.2009, 06:08
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

Hello

a) a 'nice' 3 bedroom house in a nice part of town.

It will cost u between 1500CHF to 3000 CHF per Month. However , if you decide to live in Suburbs of Delhi like Noida , Gurgoan you could get it between 1000 to 1500 CHF


b) food. (we eat everything ... and yes we'll eat out a lot)

Eating Out in good resturants for a family ( 2 Adults plus 2 Children) . Indian Food arround 60CHF per Meal , international food arround 80 to 100 CHF per meal


Food Expenses per Month can range from 500 CHF to 1000 CHF


c) a big car.


Good Decent Car arround 20,000 CHF and this can go upto 50,000 CHF

d) and of course taxes. all kinds. everything. just give me a lumpsum number... i hate details.

Taxes are dependent on your Income Levels , Higher your income more you pay .presently the highest Bracket is arround 33% but there is a proposal to reduce it by a considerable good percentage
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Old 02.12.2009, 07:25
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Hi Sumit,

Ok. Now can u please give me breakdown of the following items per month basis in CHF, assuming that I am single and I don't prefer outside food ?.

Food--
House Rent-
Internet-
Tax- (Including all type of taxes+Health Insurance)-

Also,

On what cost, a car can be bought there?
Hi anurag

Firstly, welcome to the forum and good luck with your plans in Switzerland!

Please, however, try not to suck the kind-heartedness of our forum members dry. Otherwise there will be nothing left for everyone else.

Tip: Technology is a really cool thing, as you may know considering your qualifications and career. At the bottom of this page the forum has already done the work for you by picking out key words from your query and listing suggestions to related topics. Why not have a look at that?
This should be really easy for you to manage... I did, and I'm only an Arts graduate!!

Cheers
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Old 02.12.2009, 13:56
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Hello

a) a 'nice' 3 bedroom house in a nice part of town.

It will cost u between 1500CHF to 3000 CHF per Month. However , if you decide to live in Suburbs of Delhi like Noida , Gurgoan you could get it between 1000 to 1500 CHF


b) food. (we eat everything ... and yes we'll eat out a lot)

Eating Out in good resturants for a family ( 2 Adults plus 2 Children) . Indian Food arround 60CHF per Meal , international food arround 80 to 100 CHF per meal


Food Expenses per Month can range from 500 CHF to 1000 CHF


c) a big car.


Good Decent Car arround 20,000 CHF and this can go upto 50,000 CHF

d) and of course taxes. all kinds. everything. just give me a lumpsum number... i hate details.

Taxes are dependent on your Income Levels , Higher your income more you pay .presently the highest Bracket is arround 33% but there is a proposal to reduce it by a considerable good percentage
oh jeez, what's with the ranges..? I can't budget like that!
I need exact numbers.

what's the point of all you guys hanging aound a forum if I have to then go find stuff out for myself eh?

tch tch ... the Internet ain't what it used to be
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Old 02.12.2009, 14:40
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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Hi Sumit,

Ok. Now can u please give me breakdown of the following items per month basis in CHF, assuming that I am single and I don't prefer outside food ?.

Food--
House Rent-
Internet-
Tax- (Including all type of taxes+Health Insurance)-

Also,

On what cost, a car can be bought there?
It all comes down to how average you are, and you appear to be very average, so an average salary should be sufficient.
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Old 02.12.2009, 15:11
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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90 K is the minimum salary they have to offer you
I wouldn't bank on this information
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Old 02.12.2009, 16:45
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Re: Average Cost of Living in Zurich

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oh jeez, what's with the ranges..? I can't budget like that!
I need exact numbers.
The accuracy of the numbers given was in line with the accuracy of the information you gave as a starting point
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