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Old 29.01.2020, 12:13
meloncollie meloncollie is offline
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Re: Rental application from overseas

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We are planning to spend a week or so in Zurich, next week, to make as much visits as possible and apply to as many flats as possible. We are looking mainly in Winterthur just to be away from Zurich and increase our chances a bit. Our range is 2500-3000 CHF for a 3+ rooms (2 bedrooms) apartment.
Natp, my move over here was 20+ years ago, but the market is still as tight as it was back then so perhaps my experience might apply...

We did what you are planning, also with two dogs. Only difference was that my trip was 3 days, not a week. Our goal, like yours, was to secure a place in that time so that we could move in directly when the dogs and I arrived.

We used a relocation agent. This was provided by the company, but if your husband's relo package does not include this service you can still hire an agent yourself.

I spoke with the agent prior to my trip to define our needs. The agent's job was then to set up appointments for the days I planned to be in town.

As we were looking for a house with garden, not a flat, our choice was quite limited - in fact there were only three properties available in the entire canton. But hey, that made the choice easier.

So day one: I saw three places, picked one, agent got the landlord's approval and took care of the paperwork. Done and dusted and back on a plane to Chicago.

Now it helped that I wasn't too picky. My priority was a garden for the dogs. Location, as long as my husband's commute wasn't too terrible, wasn't a priority, nor was the condition of house itself. After all we were only going to be there a year, max two. (Twenty-plus years on...)

The place I chose was rather run down - which actually ended up being a plus, as there was less worry about damage caused by the mutts. Turned out I got lucky, as the location was fantastic, neighbors very nice. We ended up staying there five years.

(In hindsight, had I stayed rather than moving to where we are now most of my posts on the forum might have been written from a very different perspective... )

That I came with a 'we are only passing through' mindset helped in the intial house hunting. Had I come expecting to stay and thus looking for the perfect place I would likely have had a difficult time. The house or flat you choose now can be short term; you can look for the dream place later, when you have learned more about what you really need/want in your new life here.

If you have limited time for house hunting, perhaps consider an agent. While ours fell short in some other areas, certainly having someone do the advance and follow-up work for you can be well worth the price so that the short time you have here is used efficiently.
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