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Old 23.11.2012, 10:49
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Need bunch of advices, I am new in Zurich

Hi,
I just get a job here (I am programmer), I come to Zurich next week (for December I have temporary flat). And I have to start looking for flat for my wife and 14 months son (3 - 3.5 rooms, max 2000 CHF, in range of 0-20 km from Zurich). So I have many questions:
- Do I have to pay provision to agency?
- When they can keep my deposit?
- Should I send anwsers for adds in english or in german, with explanation that I would like to speak in english (I speak german poorly)
- Are there some regulations in english online about renting flats?
- What else should I know? Any good advice is welcome

PS. Please PM if you know some flat.
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Old 24.11.2012, 22:50
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Re: Need bunch of advices, I am new in Zurich

Hello,
Well findig a flat in Zurich can be tricky. The best is to search yourself. Agencies will take a provision (but usually not too high). www.homegate.ch is a useful website for flats. Sometimes the flats are advertised in English, but not always. There is no genaral way of approach, each flat will be advertised individually, just follow the requirements. The landlords usually take the deposit in case of some damage. So if you broke something in the flat, they migh make you pay for it when you move out. But this is usually no shady business.
Good luck with your search!!!
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Old 24.11.2012, 23:00
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Re: Need bunch of advices, I am new in Zurich

There is loads of information already on this forum, please use the search function, it really is essential you understand how the system works.

Don't pay ANY money until you have seen inside the flat and you have a contract. There are many fraudsters about.
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Old 24.11.2012, 23:18
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Re: Need bunch of advices, I am new in Zurich

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Hi,

- What else should I know? Any good advice is welcome
Don't even consider looking in Zurich city. You won't get what you want for that money, and the competition is fierce.

Don't restrict your search to a 20km radius. You could easily live at the other end of the lake (like many other Zurich workers do) and spend half an hour or less on the train to get into the city. You will have a much wider range of apartments to choose from. The south side (i.e. the Thalwil / Horgen / Wadenswil side) is cheaper than the other.

You are usually expected to pay 3 months (returnable) deposit in advance + your first month's rent. This can be very hard to do, so consider using Swiss Caution (Google it.) It worked for us.

Think about tax. Check out Comparis.ch. You can save a lot in tax by choosing particular Gemeinden to live in. Again, the far end of the lake tends to be cheaper.

Enlist the help of your new employer. Ask HR to provide a letter stating your salary and confirming that you have a job. You won't get far without the letter. If they are nice employers, they may even make a few appointments for you if you can pick out some possibles from Homegate.ch.

Appreciate there are 3 of you but consider 2.5 rooms as well as 3.5. Floor space is probably more important than number of rooms. You can get small flats with 2 bedrooms, or relatively spacious flats with just one. Get an idea of what 100 sq/m feels like compared with 50 sq/m. It will help you visualise when you see ads.

Check out this forum. As has been said, there is a ton of help here on this, and related, subjects.

Good luck.
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Old 24.11.2012, 23:55
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Re: Need bunch of advices, I am new in Zurich

I moved to Zurich a few months ago with my husband, and we recently found and moved into an apartment in Zurich city. It was important to us to live in the heart of the city simply because we wanted the true "Zurich experience" for the short time that we'll be here and because it would reduce the commute to work. However, we are definitely paying more than I would like.

Competition is fierce, I agree, and we had a hard time getting approved for an apartment because (1) we had a dog and (2) we are American (vs. Swiss). In addition to having a letter from the employer, it would also make a good impression to write a personal letter to the landlord or to have your previous landlord write a letter of recommendation. That is what we had to resort to after being turned down 3 times.

Good luck to you! Hope that helps.

Quote:
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Don't even consider looking in Zurich city. You won't get what you want for that money, and the competition is fierce.

Don't restrict your search to a 20km radius. You could easily live at the other end of the lake (like many other Zurich workers do) and spend half an hour or less on the train to get into the city. You will have a much wider range of apartments to choose from. The south side (i.e. the Thalwil / Horgen / Wadenswil side) is cheaper than the other.

You are usually expected to pay 3 months (returnable) deposit in advance + your first month's rent. This can be very hard to do, so consider using Swiss Caution (Google it.) It worked for us.

Think about tax. Check out Comparis.ch. You can save a lot in tax by choosing particular Gemeinden to live in. Again, the far end of the lake tends to be cheaper.

Enlist the help of your new employer. Ask HR to provide a letter stating your salary and confirming that you have a job. You won't get far without the letter. If they are nice employers, they may even make a few appointments for you if you can pick out some possibles from Homegate.ch.

Appreciate there are 3 of you but consider 2.5 rooms as well as 3.5. Floor space is probably more important than number of rooms. You can get small flats with 2 bedrooms, or relatively spacious flats with just one. Get an idea of what 100 sq/m feels like compared with 50 sq/m. It will help you visualise when you see ads.

Check out this forum. As has been said, there is a ton of help here on this, and related, subjects.

Good luck.
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  #6  
Old 25.11.2012, 00:03
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Re: Need bunch of advices, I am new in Zurich

My advice would be to see if your employer can help in any way to find you the apartment or to at least have someone who can set up appointments in German. Set your minimum expectations and be prepared to adapt. You probably won't get first choice of what you want, because you are a newcomer, but I would also emphasise to the agent/landlord that you have a 14 month old child and that might help you get more sympathy...

We live in Adliswil. It's cheaper than Zurich city, has a very good train connection, local shops and is a diverse community. There's a Hindu temple in the suburb so we see a lot of Indian/Sri lankan families around as well as hearing lots of different languages when we are around the shops.

We used to live in Witikon, which had a very good connection in to Zurich as well, but was less culturally diverse, a bit older and less local shops.
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