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Old 06.11.2007, 18:31
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Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

Hi,

I am in the process of finding a job in Switzerland, which is most likely going to be in the Zürich area. I am currently being considered for 2 positions, one by Kloten airport and the other on Rotbuchstrasse in the city. I have a wife and 3 year old child who would relocate too.

We're considering living in Schwyz as opposed to Zürich as we like the mountains and are attracted by the lower tax, however we don't want this to cause problems. What are the pros and cons of living in SZ as opposed to ZH? I guess additional travel costs are one point and travel time as well.

Also, having a 3 year old son I have to consider kindergartens, schools etc. is there a difference between the school systems in SZ and ZH?

We would of course be very grateful to hear any advice that is on offer - this is a fantastic resource!
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Old 06.11.2007, 19:03
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

Hi, the march area is I think quite a nice place for families. I stay in the area. From my info gathering, a 3 year old is only eligible for pre-school and therefore going to be, in my limited knowledge, privately run bilingual ones which cost about 90:- a full day. The child has to be 4+ to be eligible for the public kindergartens.

I think tax wise, its Wollerau and Pfaeffikon. but it only makes sense if the annual package is more than 120k to even start counting the low tax. Personal opinion is Lachen offers the best mix of price versus tax rate for a package between 120-150k. But Lachen is a little bit quiet, great for familes but if u are looking for something to do on weekends, you would have to go to Rapperswil. Personally, for myself, its quite difficult to live without a car in Lachen, whereas I could do without one if I was in zurich. Nearest ski slope is 25 minutes away from Schwyz and Zurich town is 25 minutes by car.
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Old 06.11.2007, 19:08
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

Oh yes I forgot to add I work in Schwyz, and I would rather stay in Zurich if my workplace was in zurich.
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Old 06.11.2007, 22:37
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

we call Schwyz Mawdor....
it is a strange place full of religious icons and brothels....weird.lived close before never again. now am by Kloten brilliant!!!!!
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Old 07.11.2007, 00:02
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

You have to count on 1 hour commuting from Schwyz to Kloten and maybe 45 min to Rotbuchstrasse, each way. I've done it and didn't mind but everyone is different on the issue of commuting. The longer I live in CH, the more I tend to think one misses out on a lot of things by livning in Zürich. Zürich really is quite different from the rest of the country I have come to realize lately.

As mentioned before, you really need to be in the rather high income bracket for the tax benefits to pay of. Also be aware that rents are accordingly higher in Wollerau and Freienbach. Have you thought about Einsiedeln? Great place for familes I would say.
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Old 07.11.2007, 00:15
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

Einsiedeln is indeed a great place for families. Brunnen in Canton Schwyz is another town that is attracting more and more expats. Located on the Vierwaldstättersee, it still has a small town feel with lots of activities and beautiful views from the lake.

For travelling to Zürich, staying on the Zürich lake side of Canton Schwyz is easier than the Vierwaldstätter side.
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Old 07.11.2007, 02:08
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

We live the Höfe area.

We lived in a town outside Zürich when we first moved to CH and liked it quite well, but took off for the wilds of SZ as soon as we had the C permits allowing us to do so. Came for the tax breaks, stayed for the quality of life on offer. (FYI, our tax bill is over 40% lower out here.)

We are still in the ZVV area, so train transportation costs haven't changed. It's a 30 minute drive into my husband's office in the city, 40 minute train to the Zürich HB. Easy train travel to Rapperswil, Einsiedeln. (In fact, I spend more time in those towns than in ZH.) I did break down and buy a car, but mostly use it as a Hundemobile. I still prefer to take the train to the city.

Still have a beautiful view of the lake, all the way from the city to the Obersee. As well as gorgeous mountain views from the other side. Except when we are in the Nebelsuppe. Good hiking right outside our door, in half an hour I can be in the Glarnerland mountains.

The town I live in is a bit odd, but charmingly so. Mostly a farming community, but the influx of Zürich escapees has had an impact. Still very much a small town though - after your second visit to the bakery or butcher shop you will be greeted by name. And everyone will soon know who you are, where you come from, and whether you recycle your garbage properly.

This is the heart of SVP country... although there seem to be a whole herd of us 'black sheep' around. We are fairly well tolerated.

I had 5 years of living in CH before moving out to the boondocks; if I had moved here directly it might have been a shock.

On the whole, we very much like it out here; we feel it offers the best of both worlds. Easy access to all the city has to offer, peace, quiet and cowbells at home.

YMMV

Last edited by meloncollie; 07.11.2007 at 02:30.
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Old 07.11.2007, 14:01
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

Thanks to everyone who has replied so far!

Quote:
From my info gathering, a 3 year old is only eligible for pre-school and therefore going to be, in my limited knowledge, privately run bilingual ones which cost about 90:- a full day. The child has to be 4+ to be eligible for the public kindergartens.
He is 4 in July, so not too long (as it will be at least 2-3 months before we move). We're not sure about a bilingual preschool or whether it would be better to have 'total immersion' in the language so he can learn it quicker. I'll be checking the "Family" part of the forum nearer the time!


Quote:
but it only makes sense if the annual package is more than 120k to even start counting the low tax
Depending on which job I get, the salary could be anything from 84k to 135k, (a bit vague I know!).

Quote:
You have to count on 1 hour commuting from Schwyz to Kloten and maybe 45 min to Rotbuchstrasse, each way. I've done it and didn't mind but everyone is different on the issue of commuting.
Is that from Schwyz city? I currently drive 45 minutes each way to work, so anything up to an hour is not really an issue for me.

What is the traffic like?

Quote:
Einsiedeln is indeed a great place for families. Brunnen in Canton Schwyz is another town that is attracting more and more expats.
I have looked at both these towns and they do look good - I can see what you're saying about the Vierwaldstättersee too, maybe a little too far out?

Quote:
but took off for the wilds of SZ as soon as we had the C permits allowing us to do so
As an EU citizen, would I need to wait for C permit to live in SZ and work in ZH?

Quote:
Still very much a small town though - after your second visit to the bakery or butcher shop you will be greeted by name. And everyone will soon know who you are, where you come from, and whether you recycle your garbage properly.
I like the idea of living in a community rather than a city, so that is attractive to me.

Quote:
we feel it offers the best of both worlds. Easy access to all the city has to offer, peace, quiet and cowbells at home.
That's what we're looking for. We currently live in a small town, but have good access to larger places if we need to.

I am quite encouraged by the responses so far - thanks.
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Old 07.11.2007, 20:35
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

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we call Schwyz Mawdor....
it is a strange place full of religious icons and brothels.
Icons, yes. The second point I find difficult to believe. Where are you (not) going .
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Old 07.11.2007, 23:10
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

Oh, they are there - just start looking and you will find :-)



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Icons, yes. The second point I find difficult to believe. Where are you (not) going .
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Old 07.11.2007, 23:14
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

I ment 45 min from the Zürich side of Kanton Schwyz, i.e. Wollerau, Freinbach, Schidenleggi etc. Sorry! If you're on the other side, the traffic gets much, much worse as you have to go via Sihlbrugg or Knonaueramt to get to Zürich which is a pain i the a** as I am sure everyone here can confirm.
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Old 07.11.2007, 23:23
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

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Oh, they are there - just start looking and you will find :-)
The icons are on every other Wanderweg - it's a catholic area.
The other? Must be the route from Zurich .
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Old 29.06.2008, 12:55
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

@melloncollie:

Your reply was really interesting - we're wondering about your line where you refer to the C permit - do we misinterpret your email as it sounds like you're only free to choose where you move (ie canton other than the one you work in) once you have the "C"?
One of us (the one with the job) would get the B permit as a EU member, and then probably rent for 3 months while looking to buy. The other one (the husband) would then follow suit.
We're thinking of buying in the Schwyz canton or any other canton but ZH as we heard it's expensive and with the income bracket that we are likely to be in we would prefer to benefit from lower taxes where possible as we will only have one person earning for a while (while the other is desperately learning the language

Thanks for your input!
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Old 29.06.2008, 12:56
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

PS - forgot to say there's only the two of us. No kids, dogs.... just motorcycles to bring
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Old 29.06.2008, 15:06
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

Binedave,

We are non-EU, so while on B permits we were restricted to living in the canton that issues my husband's work permit. However, if you are EU I believe those restrictions do not apply, and you are free to live where you choose. Do confirm that with the powers that be, though - I'm not fully up to date on Eu perks.

Housing in Ausserschwyz (March, Höfe, easily commutable to ZH) isn't necessarily that much more expensive, unless you are looking for a mansion.

Most towns in the area have a range of housing from flats (small to luxury) to older or 'normal' homes, to eye-popping villas. Yes, those villas will be priced up in the stratosphere, because all those ZH tax exiles are chasing after the handful of mansions available.

But some 'normal' properties are actually quite affordable, especially when you consider the tax advantage. We bought a small older home, nothing fancy, in need of renovation - for about what a similar property in the Pfannenstiel area would have cost.

Take a look at the Homegate site to compare housing prices in various areas, and run through their tax calculator - you may find, depending on your individual situation, that the tax difference more than makes up for higher prices.

I would caution you, however, to research the housing market in CH and in the area before buying - it isn't like housing in the US or UK. Generally, houses have appreciated very slowly, and the market moves at a snail's pace.

Buying a house in three months might be unrealistic. It took us a year of looking before we found our home, as not too many properties come on the market at any one time. And, once we found our place, we had to move heaven and earth to get the sellers to agree to closing in three months - six months or longer from signing the reservation contract seems the norm here. You might get lucky, but do be prepared to be flexible.

There are several threads detailing the oddities of home purchasing and ownership in Switzerland - do browse through them.

I love living out here - it was definitely the right move for us.

Best of luck with your move.


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@melloncollie:

Your reply was really interesting - we're wondering about your line where you refer to the C permit - do we misinterpret your email as it sounds like you're only free to choose where you move (ie canton other than the one you work in) once you have the "C"?
One of us (the one with the job) would get the B permit as a EU member, and then probably rent for 3 months while looking to buy. The other one (the husband) would then follow suit.
We're thinking of buying in the Schwyz canton or any other canton but ZH as we heard it's expensive and with the income bracket that we are likely to be in we would prefer to benefit from lower taxes where possible as we will only have one person earning for a while (while the other is desperately learning the language

Thanks for your input!
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This user would like to thank meloncollie for this useful post:
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Old 19.07.2009, 12:11
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Re: Schwyz or Zürich / Family relocation

Hope you find this useful.

http://www.sz.ch/documents/brochure_17_english.pdf
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