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  #121  
Old 12.09.2017, 15:34
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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Yep, large majority of people in this country will simply never earn 120K a year.

Just a simple thought to give people an idea, walk through a shoppingstreet, look at the cab drivers, store employees, tram drivers, people working at McD and other bars/restaurants, think of all the people who build and maintain and clean all of those places and streets, all the truck drivers and warehouse people that are needed for supplying these stores.

For all these people 120K is something they can only dream off.
That's the most obvious conclusion I have ever read.
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  #122  
Old 12.09.2017, 15:35
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

Being local can make your life cheaper - that is, if you can use one of family properties, get some cash to avoid high mortgage or rent cheaply from family member. I've seen all of the above. Plus, when you have children and non-working parent/in-law you can save a lot on daycare, babysitting ect.
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  #123  
Old 12.09.2017, 15:37
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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This is a very good point. Lookign around my neighbourhood, I see plenty of people who inhereted the place they live in, they have grandparents instead of daycare.

So there is already at least 7K net /month difference in living expenses for a family with 2 kids and a decent place, which is 9K/ month difference in earnings for the same quality of life. So you almost use up the 120k just to compensate for beign an expat without grandma daycare and inherited apt.
If you earn enough (what a lot of expats do) you can bring your grandma along :P
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  #124  
Old 12.09.2017, 15:37
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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That's the most obvious conclusion I have ever read.
For some in this topic it did not seem so obvious...
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  #125  
Old 12.09.2017, 15:40
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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Correct. Therefore, one should consider the relevant category prior to accepting a certain job offer. that is the whole point of the discussion
Absolutely agreed.

If you are purely looking at the numbers and assuming information is available then my views on trying to ascertain an appropriate salary are:
  1. Look at the overall median of the country;
  2. Look at the overall median for your situation (single v family);
  3. Look at the median market rate for your job including experience either through salary surveys or Salarium; and
  4. Look at whether the numbers work for you (current v future, income v cost etc)

The thread was only trying to address the first two points

If you are a single guy earning £200k in London then you are hardly going to move here for 60k but if you are jobless or just starting out or in a dead-end job earning say £40k in London then you might want to consider moving here assuming everything else works because on 60k you won't be homeless and you won't starve.
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  #126  
Old 12.09.2017, 15:41
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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The simple fact that one is an expat does not make life more or less expensive.

After that conclusion you can throw in whatever extra data you want to pull the truth to the left or the right.

You say some Swiss people have cheaper living due to lower housing costs, but they also have a lower average and median income then expats, so should we see expenses as a percentage of income, or as absolute numbers?
I don't understand you. Point is that average expat needs more money to have the same standard of living of a local (speaking of averages). Therefore, yes, we are a community of smug professionals, but in average, it's an average life. There is absolutely no income bubble among highly paid professional expats - in average.
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  #127  
Old 12.09.2017, 15:53
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

I mean, even renting... I pay roughly twice more for the same apartment in the same building, than an old lady who has lived there for ages. (Btw 3 old socks with dead husbands in my building rent 13 rooms in total, and this seems normal here while there is always a complaint there's no houses, but this is another story...)
The expats can't compete with the locals, the ones who migrate should do it for their children, that's life.
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  #128  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:00
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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I mean, even renting... I pay roughly twice more for the same apartment in the same building, than an old lady who has lived there for ages.
That is not unusual, happens anywhere
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  #129  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:03
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

I wouldn't say we earn more because we are expats. If we are paid better it's mainly because we bring better combination of education and experience. No one forbids Swiss people to study, gain new qualifications and experience. There is also no reason comparing a McD employee with a professional with PhD and assuming that if the first one can live on 4000 CHF a month, the other shouldn't consider anything above this amount to be not enough to ensure modest life.
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  #130  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:03
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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That is not unusual, happens anywhere
I know... Still, it's the case against newcomers. Even inheriting rented apartment helps.
Still, one has to wonder, if there is a problem with available housing as everybody talks there is, why don't you tax people living in much more space than they need? Or it's just a thing to scare locals with foreigners who will come and push the grandma out of her cosy 5 room apartment, poor woman.
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  #131  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:06
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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why don't you tax people living in much more space than they need?
Dave? Georgie? Is that one of you trying to introduce bedroom tax here in CH as well?
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  #132  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:17
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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I know... Still, it's the case against newcomers. Even inheriting rented apartment helps.
Still, one has to wonder, if there is a problem with available housing as everybody talks there is, why don't you tax people living in much more space than they need? Or it's just a thing to scare locals with foreigners who will come and push the grandma out of her cosy 5 room apartment, poor woman.
And why wouldn´t grandma be allowed to live in that apartment? She pays for it

I don´t know, if you look around you can still find decent housing (with some luck admittedly). Check out the Genossenschaften who offer housing for a very fair price.
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  #133  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:21
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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I know... Still, it's the case against newcomers. Even inheriting rented apartment helps.
Still, one has to wonder, if there is a problem with available housing as everybody talks there is, why don't you tax people living in much more space than they need? Or it's just a thing to scare locals with foreigners who will come and push the grandma out of her cosy 5 room apartment, poor woman.
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Dave? Georgie? Is that one of you trying to introduce bedroom tax here in CH as well?
There is already such a tax: its called eigenmietwert.
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  #134  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:21
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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And why wouldn´t grandma be allowed to live in that apartment? She pays for it

I don´t know, if you look around you can still find decent housing (with some luck admittedly). Check out the Genossenschaften who offer housing for a very fair price.
It's not easy to joke in a written form...
I'm more making a case against all this "foreigners are raising the cost of living for poor us" bullshit, because ironically, this is mainly spoken by the people living alone in huge apartments.
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  #135  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:36
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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Absolutely agreed.

If you are purely looking at the numbers and assuming information is available then my views on trying to ascertain an appropriate salary are:
  1. Look at the overall median of the country;
  2. Look at the overall median for your situation (single v family);
  3. Look at the median market rate for your job including experience either through salary surveys or Salarium; and
  4. Look at whether the numbers work for you (current v future, income v cost etc)

The thread was only trying to address the first two points

If you are a single guy earning £200k in London then you are hardly going to move here for 60k but if you are jobless or just starting out or in a dead-end job earning say £40k in London then you might want to consider moving here assuming everything else works because on 60k you won't be homeless and you won't starve.
Sorry, but you really sound like a broken record. The median income is for the individual completely irrelevant and says nothing about the quality of life or what life style you can afford if you earn the median income. It's something economists can have a chat about, but has nothing to do with your daily life.

Simple examples:
- I once considered a job offer in China. I could not care less what the average Chinese earns. What I care about is a shopping basket with the costs of a typical expat lifestyle.
- I lived in Singapore and if you value spending money on restaurants and nightlife will you be better off there than here. If you spend your money on cars is Switzerland the smarter choice.
- I live in Switzerland. I could not care less what the median income is. The question is what lifestyle I can afford for the salary I am earning. And this can vary extremely even within Europe. And that's not a matter of the median incomes in EU countries but your individual life situation. A family of five is most likely better off in Scandinavia than here. For me, married, double income, no kids, is it the opposite.
- I will move to another EU country soon and when we considered the move was the median income completely irrelevant once again. We basically looked at our "shopping basket" on the lifestyle we are looking for and then you can calculate if you are better off in Switzerland or elsewhere.
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  #136  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:37
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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There is already such a tax: its called eigenmietwert.
Huge difference on being taxed on the advantage one (is according to state likely to gain) from living in one own's house, or to get a benefit reduction for living in a rental bigger than necessary.
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  #137  
Old 12.09.2017, 16:43
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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Huge difference on being taxed on the advantage one (is according to state likely to gain) from living in one own's house, or to get a benefit reduction for living in a rental bigger than necessary.
I hardly believe that one could afford renting above one's needs on supplementary pay (Ergänzungsleistungen (EL).

Correct me if I am wrong.
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  #138  
Old 12.09.2017, 17:28
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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Sorry, but you really sound like a broken record. The median income is for the individual completely irrelevant and says nothing about the quality of life or what life style you can afford if you earn the median income. It's something economists can have a chat about, but has nothing to do with your daily life.

Simple examples:
- I once considered a job offer in China. I could not care less what the average Chinese earns. What I care about is a shopping basket with the costs of a typical expat lifestyle.
- I lived in Singapore and if you value spending money on restaurants and nightlife will you be better off there than here. If you spend your money on cars is Switzerland the smarter choice.
- I live in Switzerland. I could not care less what the median income is. The question is what lifestyle I can afford for the salary I am earning. And this can vary extremely even within Europe. And that's not a matter of the median incomes in EU countries but your individual life situation. A family of five is most likely better off in Scandinavia than here. For me, married, double income, no kids, is it the opposite.
- I will move to another EU country soon and when we considered the move was the median income completely irrelevant once again. We basically looked at our "shopping basket" on the lifestyle we are looking for and then you can calculate if you are better off in Switzerland or elsewhere.
I really want to groan at this but I won't, not my style. If you post on the internet you should be prepared for moments when you want to tear your hair out.

I am really sorry but so do you.

Did you even read the post? I really suggest you read the post and try to understand both the letter and spirit of the post before just latching on to one bit of it and going off tangent.

Of course if you are going to move from a very high income country to a very low income country the medians are not really comparable. Hence why you would:

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Look at whether the numbers work for you (current v future, income v cost etc)
and quite quickly conclude it isn't for you. For example, if you were earning 60k here and saving 10% why would you move to the Democratic Republic of Congo earning the median there.

Related to highly developed versus developing country point is whether an "expat basket" is relevant or not. If you are back in DRC you will want to send your kids to international school otherwise your kids will be in a class of 100+, under a tree and that is if the teacher decides to turn up. Do you necessarily need your kids at an international school here? Probably not. Exceptions apply such as older kids needing bilingual schools, if you live a transient life etc etc.

Income is only one side of the equation, cost is absolutely another side of the equation. Whilst you are right certain things cost more here than in other places.

Of course you have to consider your lifestyle when you are taking costs into account but lifestyles are extremely subjective. If your first point to try and establish income is lifestyle, rather than a baseline and then adjusting, you may as pluck a number out of thin air.

Let's use this post we had a little while ago as an example:

"After months of research, I have succeeded in getting a job offer, in the field of digital marketing, with 5 years of work experience.

I was offered 68 000 chf yearly gross

I know it is not a huge salary for Zurich, but I was wondering if it would be enough to cover expenses if I need to rent a small flat outside Zurich manage other expenses..."

The approach I would use would have said:

Country median: 6.5k; Single person median: 5k; Median salary for digital marketing with my level of experience XZY; current situation ABC, savings after average costs RST can this financially work at a basic level? What is this basic level? Do I need to adjust the basic level? What adjustments need to made? What are essential adjustments and what are discretionary / nice to have adjustment? How much will these cost? Am I still happy to go?

Your approach: my current lifestyle I eat out and drink a beer at an average restaurant everyday that will be 3,000 per month in Zurich so I won't be moving. Or worryingly, this is the lifestyle I want: I want to drive a Ferrari, live on the Lake, eat the finest caviar and drink the finest champagne result: I need 120k per month. Sorry Mr. Employer I only have 5 years experience in digital marketing and I know this is what the median wage for the job and my experience but you need to up it from 68k pa to 120k pa because that is what goods and services in my basket cost for the lifestyle I want.

Even if I didn't paint the extreme example, I hope you realise that no two lifestyles are the same and even an individual's lifestyle is very dynamic as people's requirements are constantly changing and evolving. To a point where lifestyle and by default the cost of that lifestyle can vary year on year e.g. suddenly gone from having a high paying job to losing it, single to married with a wife who doesn't work, birth of a kid, from smoking 3 packs a day to none etc.

You are right, I am going on like a broken record and the more I continue the more it will go on cause some people either don't read (the very first post said single person and median wage and a reasonable estimate of costs for that single person yet I have got people going on about families) or bang on about things that are impossible to quantify.

You guys can carry on the discussion if you wish, I will not be part of it.
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  #139  
Old 12.09.2017, 17:32
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

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You guys can carry on the discussion if you wish, I will not be part of it.

I bet you will
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  #140  
Old 12.09.2017, 17:41
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Re: Is one poor if they don't earn CHF 120k?

well, looking at the time we spend on the forum; I guess we don't really deserve neither 60k nor 120k
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