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Old 13.05.2017, 13:06
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Monthly Family Budget for St.Gallen

Hello Everyone,

I have searched the forum but did not find a recent topic on family budget for St. Gallen. After researching this through sites like numbeo and comparis I came to contradicting data, so I decided to ask real people who live in the area.

Here's my case: I have a family of four (2 kids: 3,5yo and 1yo, wife and myself) and we are about to move to St.Gallen.
Therefore, I try to make a reasonable monthly budget for my family. Here is it:

Basic:
Rent 4,5 (3 bedrooms) apartment: 2000-2400 CHF/month
Food: 1800-2200 CHF/month
Health Insurance: 1000 CHF/month (whole family)
Kinderkrippe (Kindergarten/Child-Care): 2100-2400 CHF/month/child (for 20 days in month) | 120-125 CHF/day/child
Utility: 200 CHF/month (electricity, water, gas, trash taxes etc.)
TV/Radio tax: 40 CHF/month
Internet: 50-70 CHF/month
Mobile: 40 CHF/month/person
Train Card: 340 CHF/month

Optional:
Car: 120 CHF/month (tax, insurance, mandatory maintenance) | 1200 CHF/year
Child Care: ~2000 CHF/month

Total Basic: ~7700 - 8700 CHF/month (one kid at kinderkrippe for 20 days)
Total Basic: ~10800 - 11100 CHF/month (two kids at kinderkrippe for 20 days)

My questions:
- Is this budget realistic?
- Do you see something in this budget that needs to be added/removed/adjusted/changed?
- Do I miss something?
- How are the healthcare services in the St.Gallen (city/canton)? Are you satisfied with the doctors (especially the Pediatricians) in the area (numbeo gives low ratings).
- How does kinderkrippe works and what are the real costs for St. Gallen? - this is my biggest concern!
Initially I thought that the kindergarten in Switzerland was free but then I found out that the Swiss pre-school is divided into prep-school (ages 6-7) and child-care (ages <1-6); the latter is adressed by kinderkrippe and is private (not free) the former is public (free/taxes).

My assumptions:
- Health insurance covers all costs related with visiting a doctor (examination, tests, medicines). Any additional costs are up to 100 CHF/month

Things you might consider in your recommendations:
- We are not used to luxurious life-style. No fancy vacations or buying expensive things.
- Normally we cook our own food at home and I bring mu lunch at work
- Normally we go out in nature and we do not eat out at restaurants
- Normally we have mixed diet - meat: 2-3 kg/month, fish: 1-2 kg/month, vegetables, fruits, rice, bread... (3-4 meals/day/person)
- Seldom (1-2 times/month) we might order pizza or sit for a cake at a sweetshop.

Thanks in advance to everyone who contributes with comments and suggestions.
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  #2  
Old 13.05.2017, 13:35
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

Hi Adrian
welcome to the Forum.

Food: The supermarket chains in Switzerland tend to have uniform pricing across the country.
Medical insurances differ from canton to canton.
Taxes differ from canton to canton and within that municipality to municipality.
Rents are most expensive (as a very general generalisation) in Zurich and Geneva, and are typically lower the further out of any city you go.

Bearing these factors in mind, it is possible to scale anyone's budget figures from any other city. Therefore, many other threads on budget and lifestyle could well be helpful to you, even though not specifically about St Gallen.

Therefore, if you have not already done so, I suggest you have a look at this fairly recent thread
https://www.englishforum.ch/finance-...og-enough.html
(even if it is not about St Gallen) which links to other threads, which in turn include proposed budgets.

Last edited by doropfiz; 13.05.2017 at 13:49.
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Old 13.05.2017, 13:37
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

Here's quite a comprehensive thread on the medical insurance, and which costs - over and above the monthly premiums - could come your way:
https://www.englishforum.ch/insuranc...insurance.html
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Old 13.05.2017, 13:39
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

Here's a recent thread about taxes varying across cantons and municipalities:
https://www.englishforum.ch/finance-...r-housing.html
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Old 13.05.2017, 13:47
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

For info about the Swiss schooling system, and costs, you could try the sticky threads listed here:
https://www.englishforum.ch/education/, in particular
https://www.englishforum.ch/educatio...ol-system.html
and
https://www.englishforum.ch/educatio...itzerland.html.
Please don't be put off by the fact that this last thread, in particular, was started in 2009. It contains many much more recent posts, too.

Kindergarten and primary school are compulsory and free.
Kinderkrippe is fee-paying, sometimes means-tested.
Kinderhort (after hours care around school) is fee-paying and typically means-tested.
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Old 13.05.2017, 13:51
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

Hi doropfiz,

Thanks for the quick reply.

I have already examined the thread you pointed out (as many other similar threads) and the links it refers to (BTW: same question you referred circulates in quora). As you pointed out there was not so good info about St. Gallen. Indeed, most of the threads are about Zurich/Geneva and my challenge (said in simplest terms) is how to scale e.g. Zurich budget to St.Gallen budget without ever been living in these cities

As for the taxation, I believe have some understanding. My main point here is about the cost of living. Regarding the kinderkrippe (my biggest concern): if I do not get enough information from this thread, I will try to contact [1] some of them and ask directly. Hope it will be OK.

[1] https://www.stadt.sg.ch/home/schule-...erkrippen.html
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Old 13.05.2017, 13:57
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

Google this, to find the tarifs:
"Tarif für die subventionierten Kinderkrippen in der Stadt St.Gallen".
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Old 13.05.2017, 14:25
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

Quote:
View Post
Google this, to find the tarifs:
"Tarif für die subventionierten Kinderkrippen in der Stadt St.Gallen".
Thanks a lot!

This seems to be quite helpful document:
https://www.kinderkrippe-schloessli....ngen_Stadt.pdf

According to it the kinderkrippe in St. Gallen is max ~1950 CHF/month/child and depends on the family income. If siblings go to the same crib the one who visits most is at full cost while the rest could get 30% off.
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Old 13.05.2017, 14:32
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

Quote:
View Post
Thanks a lot!

This seems to be quite helpful document:
https://www.kinderkrippe-schloessli....ngen_Stadt.pdf

According to it the kinderkrippe in St. Gallen is max ~1950 CHF/month/child....
How did you calculate that Fr. 1950?
From this table I understood the maximum, for a taxable income of Fr. 95’000 and upwards, to be the full tarif of Fr. 96.90 per day.
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Old 13.05.2017, 15:02
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

~1950 CHF/month max assumes max KDS (96,60 CHF) * 20 visiting days per month on average over one year. Why 20? - the average # workdays/month in Switzerland is 21-22/month and assume kids will not visit kinderkrippe during some days when family is on paid-leave.

e.g.
- feb 2017 is 20 workdays the cost/month will be 1932 CHF
- aug 2017 is 22 workdays the cost/month will be 2125 CHF
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Old 13.05.2017, 16:48
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

Quote:
... assume kids will not visit kinderkrippe during some days when family is on paid-leave.
You'll definitely need to check this part; I'm not sure that the tarif works this way. As I have heard it, a Krippe requires the parents to make a contract specifying how many days per week, or days per month, the child will attend Krippe, and this commitment applies even if the child is sometimes not present on the booked days. This seems reasonable to me, since the Krippe has to budget and plan staffing, etc.

By the way, I admire the fact that you're working on looking things up, and planning as well as you can, in advance.
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Old 13.05.2017, 20:45
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

As you have young children you would be well advised to get a ground floor apartment, children invariably run about, drop things, and make a lot of noise, and Swiss neighbours are not very tolerant of noise.

You can save a lot of money here by shopping at least once per week at Lidl or Aldi. The child allowance barely covers the cost of Pampers, so try the Aldi ones.

The train costs look high, if you don't need a full season ticket, you can buy a "Streckenabonnement" which allows you unlimited travel between towns A & B, just during the period you pay for. You only work for about 46 weeks a year, so why pay for 52 weeks, and then for the whole country?

Fixed route subscriptions are available for children and adults for the 1st and 2nd class. For the period of validity you choose between seven days, one month and twelve months. "Streckenabonnement" Fixed route tickets for twelve months are priced favourably (ride 12 months, pay for 9 months).

.

Last edited by Sbrinz; 13.05.2017 at 21:07.
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Old 15.05.2017, 20:44
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Re: Monthyl Family Budget for St.Gallen

I appreciate that you both may be working full time, but if not... do both kids need to go to kindergarten etc full time? That would save quite a bundle. I also appreciate, trust me, that if your wife is not working then she still needs a break so I'm just thinking out loud I suppose.
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