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Old 05.03.2014, 00:01
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Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

Hi All,

We are moving to la Suisse in a few months time. I have been on Homegate.ch to scout out potential rentals (from Lausanne to Geneva along the Lake or in Lausanne city) and it has proven disappointing as there are so few rentals available. I would say that there are only 4 max per village/town/city that would accommodate our family.

We may or may not have a relocation person helping us. My partner's company is small so they are not providing a cushy reloc package and we don't have access to the big relocation firms.

Does anyone have any tips for finding a place? Should we pay out of our pocket for a relocation agent to help us find a rental/ help us find schools? Do the relocation agents really help / have inside contacts somehow to off market rentals? Do real estate home letting agencies exist there?

Thanks - I have searched this thread a bit but did not find answers to some of the info.

Best
M
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Old 05.03.2014, 09:33
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

We couldn't have done it without a relocation agent. They won't necessarily find you anything you can't see yourself on the likes of Homegate, but the assistance through the process is invaluable.

As for inside contacts, on one flat we wanted we were the 35th set of people to view in one day, and the 8th to say we wanted it. Our agent was on the phone to the company dealing with the rental while we were inside and basically secured it for us there and then. That the landlord decided not to rent at all was another matter.

It's definitely tough, but unless your French is good you'd struggle without any help with the contracts and all the documents you need. Good luck!
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Old 05.03.2014, 12:55
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

The lodging market in Geneva and Lausanne is EXTREMELY tight, and finding a place is somewhat of a nightmare.

Be ready to reduce your expectations and wishes, and pay a high price for what you'll get.

And yes, a relocating agent is a necessity.
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Old 05.03.2014, 14:33
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

There is a huge shortage of affordable housing in and around Geneva, unless you start looking across the border into France.

However, there are local newspapers in French, and therefore not always read by a huge number of expats, that advertise regularly and often at less inflated prices.

Try this local free newspaper, click on the house symbol, make sure you enter "Locations" for renting:
http://www.ghi.ch/

The other big newspaper for Romandie is Tribune de Genève, but I've checked their website, they use homegate and the following site:
http://www.tutti.ch/fr

Finally, World Radio Switzerland has got its own classified:
http://www.worldradio.ch/

Good luck!
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Old 05.03.2014, 16:24
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

@ Mazza

I have sent you a PM with details on a relocation agent that I know who handles cases from Nyon to Montreux. You can contact her is you are interested.
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Old 05.03.2014, 19:07
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

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We couldn't have done it without a relocation agent. They won't necessarily find you anything you can't see yourself on the likes of Homegate, but the assistance through the process is invaluable.

As for inside contacts, on one flat we wanted we were the 35th set of people to view in one day, and the 8th to say we wanted it. Our agent was on the phone to the company dealing with the rental while we were inside and basically secured it for us there and then. That the landlord decided not to rent at all was another matter.

It's definitely tough, but unless your French is good you'd struggle without any help with the contracts and all the documents you need. Good luck!
Thank you! I have sent you a message to see whether you still had your relocation agents name. I would like to follow up with them.
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Old 05.03.2014, 19:10
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

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There is a huge shortage of affordable housing in and around Geneva, unless you start looking across the border into France.

However, there are local newspapers in French, and therefore not always read by a huge number of expats, that advertise regularly and often at less inflated prices.

Try this local free newspaper, click on the house symbol, make sure you enter "Locations" for renting:
http://www.ghi.ch/

The other big newspaper for Romandie is Tribune de Genève, but I've checked their website, they use homegate and the following site:
http://www.tutti.ch/fr

Finally, World Radio Switzerland has got its own classified:
http://www.worldradio.ch/

Good luck!
Thank you for your thoughtful reply and the information! It will be extremely useful in my searches.
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Old 05.03.2014, 19:39
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

i find it out that place i listed on here dont get much attention, given the shortage.. still available!




http://www.englishforum.ch/property-...neva-area.html
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Old 05.03.2014, 20:08
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

Must say I am surprised (bump)
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Old 05.03.2014, 22:23
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

I think it is also the time of year. Wait a few months and the number of available places will increase as people try to move after school lets out.
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Old 05.03.2014, 23:53
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

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I think it is also the time of year. Wait a few months and the number of available places will increase as people try to move after school lets out.
Maybe.. just maybe in Lausanne, but certainly not in Geneva.
1) there's a major shortage in Geneva.
2) without full support from the company it will be impossible. The company needs to vouch for you by saying that you have a longterm contract with them and that you've been employed x amount of years. You'll need to produce salary statements and work permit to even be considered. So trying this from abroad is difficult.
3) best shot is a relocation agency that regularly works with local real estate agencies. You'll need them to handle all the communications and paperwork in French.

Check out www.immostreet.ch too
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Old 06.03.2014, 11:33
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

Sent you a private message.


First of all good luck, unfortunately agencies in the area are not very welcoming.
Flats available there are, but the biggest problem is the waiting list in which you'll be put after your application.

Moreover, most agencies unless you have a relocation agent, they ask you to visit the flat before apply for it.


Based on statistics, tenants gets a flat after apply for 10 of them average.
And their expectations are to be reduced from the beginning.


If you might need any help or information, you can contact me.


Regards
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Old 06.03.2014, 20:17
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

Thank you to everyone for posting replies and giving me contact details of relocation agents.

One quick and possibly daft question, are relocation agents the same as a real estate agent in Switz ? I understand that RA might provide other services (advice, schools etc - I have used one before) but it sounds like their big value in Switz is in finding and securing property which seems to be difficult to achieve without one. So my next question is..are there real estate agents who can focus on the property side and not so much on the other relocation issues (whatever those might be, schools I guess...) so sort of property specialists with the same amount of "pull" as other relocation agents (agent immobilier = similar level of execution)?

We probably need housing help but not much other help (unless company pays which it may not).

Thanks a million in advance
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Old 06.03.2014, 20:43
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

Good evening,

I'll send you a private message, concerning your last request.

Have a nice evening.
Regards
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Old 06.03.2014, 21:05
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

The one we used offered all sorts of stuff, but we only used the housing assistance. This is pretty much what they did for us:
  • Arranged viewings on properties and took us round them, liaising with the agent.
  • Accompanied us on viewings on properties we had found ourselves.
  • Dealt with all the negotiation when we said we wanted a place.
  • Arranged all the paperwork (huge job).
  • Walked us through the contract - translation etc
  • Was present at check in and sorted out the stuff that arose from it - some remedial works etc
  • Remain available for us to contact if we have any problems throughout the length of the contract.

Think of the relocation agent as a sort of consultant to find you a place. The real estate agents are no different to the UK, and their obligations are to their clients (landlords) rather than you.
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Old 06.03.2014, 22:17
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

Yes mazza, certain relocation services will focus on real estate without necessarily offering other services (unless you want them).
Maybe this one can help, I've heard they offer good services (I've never used a relocation agency though)


http://packimpex.ch/


Real estate agencies (called "régies") are separate from relocation agencies.
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Old 06.03.2014, 22:19
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

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Think of the relocation agent as a sort of consultant to find you a place. The real estate agents are no different to the UK, and their obligations are to their clients (landlords) rather than you.

This is so true.... only real estate agencies act as landlords and they cater to the owners of the property. It is always the owner who selects the renter.
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Old 07.03.2014, 18:41
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

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The one we used offered all sorts of stuff, but we only used the housing assistance. This is pretty much what they did for us:
  • Arranged viewings on properties and took us round them, liaising with the agent.
  • Accompanied us on viewings on properties we had found ourselves.
  • Dealt with all the negotiation when we said we wanted a place.
  • Arranged all the paperwork (huge job).
  • Walked us through the contract - translation etc
  • Was present at check in and sorted out the stuff that arose from it - some remedial works etc
  • Remain available for us to contact if we have any problems throughout the length of the contract.
Think of the relocation agent as a sort of consultant to find you a place. The real estate agents are no different to the UK, and their obligations are to their clients (landlords) rather than you.

OUrs did all that and sorted internet, phone line etc prior to us moving in. Lodge Relocation was the name. They did not help that much with finding the actual place (I had found it on internet), but for securing it, they were essential.
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Old 14.03.2014, 19:06
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

Hi I am moving to Lausanne in April to start a new job. company has organised a months temporary accommodation for me when I arrive but I need to find something more permanent. Would people recommend using a relocation agent or should I be ok looking on my own? I would be looking for an apartment in or around the centre of Lausanne for one person.
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Old 15.03.2014, 11:14
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Re: Rentals around Geneva / Lausanne

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Would people recommend using a relocation agent or should I be ok looking on my own?


Did you read the thread..?
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