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Old 16.01.2015, 12:18
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

I agree with the Oerlikon suggestions and also that it would be better to rent than to try to buy somewhere unless you have serious money. We have a friend in Oerlikon who bought a flat there last year ... a one bedroom for over CHF 700,00! A very nice new build but not everyone would be able to pay that kind of money. Trendier districts of Zurich will be even more expensive. Much better to look for a rental with a good-sized balcony or terrace where your cats can spend time. Those nets that people have talked about work well and are quite common here - I should imagine they would be allowed at most apartments.
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Old 19.01.2015, 18:20
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Hi there Lynds.

I agree with the posters suggesting you live nearby to get your bearings and suss out what Zurich is all about.

I would recommend looking for a flat in the Glattpark region (all new build, nice properties, plenty of amenities and not too far from the town centre, maybe 15-20mins all told on public transport).

I'll be moving over that way in June myself, so welcome to the neighbourhood!
Hey,

Thanks for the suggestion. I'll have a wee look at the area.

Maybe I'll see you around!

Lynds

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You will get what you pay for, and the numbers are high.

With that out of the way, here is your strategy for finding property:

a) Invest 2 hours of quality time into defining yourself, yours needs, your (secret) wishes

b) Invest 20(!) hours of your own quality time into getting an impression of the tight property market in Switzerland at https://en.comparis.ch/immobilien/default.aspx . Comparis is a meta search engine, combining almost all of the Internet sites with property sites within Switzerland (and your relocation agent will most likely not use anything else)

Comparis allows you to determine the asking price is within current expectations and whether there is a high level of turn-over on that property by looking at "How much does the neighbourhood pay?" (Very nice analytics, unique to Comparis)

You will notice that:
b1) Rents are high
b2) Set of available properties is small

Welcome to Zürich

c) Understand the mechanics of using a car within the Zürich area, and within Switzerland:
c1) Finding parking space *anywhere* is a serious challenge (at home, at work, for shopping, ...). Switzerland, and Zürich in particular, is on a crusade against cars.
c2) Commuting by car in the Zürich area is a challenge. Very, very early in the morning, you are fine (0600-ish?). After that, the motorways around Zürich are one big (non-permanent - hehe) parking space.

So, do make up your mind regarding getting a car at all. (For the record: I do own a car, and I wonder why )

d) Learn to use http://www.sbb.ch/en/home.html and http://www.zvv.ch/en/ and investigate 10 hours of quality time to investigate your options for public transport

Preferably, look at the network plan (e.g. http://www.zvv.ch/en/routes-and-zone...work-plan.html) and get a feeling for what is possible.

In Switzerland, public transport provides an excellent means for travelling. Study the network plan. Try routes (and minimize switches).

e) Look at the noise emission maps built for Zürich airport,

httop://www.laerm.zh.ch/flugbereich

which is rather close to your place of work

f) Being sufficiently confused, you are also sufficiently prepared for renting hideously expensive, temporary(!) furnished accomodation (shared flat, service provider, whatever) for about three months near one of the major train stations somewhat close to Zürich City (e.g. Baden, Zürich, Winterthur).

Now get a feel for the area(s).

Eventually, you will have aligned your preferences with market reality - and you will be prepared to find *your* flat.

Many of the recommendations that others have provided are good - Glattpark is nice, as is City of Zürich proper, as are other areas. One of the local banks publishes a rating of the areas of the greater Zürich area at https://www.zkb.ch/de/pr/pk/finanzie...nenrating.html Try to read it (using http://translate.google.com/)

All in all, spend 60-ish hours to get a clue. Then spend a lot of time to find the right place for yourself.

This has been beyond helpful. Thank you Daffy. Although I'm away to stick my head in a gas oven now LOL. Kidding!

Thank you again. I've booked marked everything and will start my research.

Lynds

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I really think this whole "noise problem" is the exception rather than the rule, and of course people (including me) enjoy our bit of fun moaning about this sort of thing.

I have lived in six different flats in Switzerland, and have never yet had the slightest problem related to flushing the loo, having baths, listening to Mahler symphonies very loud at 11 in the evening or doing laundry on Sundays. All of which I do quite regularly :-)
You rebel, you

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Don't believe everything you hear. I've never heard of ANYONE having any complaints about flushing the toilet after midnight and I've lived here all my life Generally, you need to take all these urban legends with a grain of salt - people love to complain rather than give praise, so if you read or hear about one bad case, there's at least 500'000 that never had that problem.

Other than that, moving from the countryside to Zurich will be like moving from Connecticut to Manhattan (sort of). You will never find a house with a garden in the city unless you are very very wealthy.

If having a garden or being (even) close(r) to nature is important to you, you should definitely consider pretty much any suburb around Zurich. Remember, the city is small and you don't need a car - public transportation is terrific and it won't take you longer than 30mins or so to commute from pretty much any suburb in and out of Zurich.

Funnily enough, I currently know of several people who chose to leave Zurich and live in the suburbs instead, simply because what they were getting in Zurich was too expensive and they missed having a garden or even so much as a decent-sized balcony.

Given the location of your future workplace, you might want to look into Opfikon, Oberglatt, Niederglatt, Dielsdorf, Regensdorf, Buchs. You can really get pretty awesome apartments for several hundred CHF less than you'd pay for a similar one in Zurich. Be aware it's still not cheap - it's still close to Zurich, i.e. one of the five most expensive cities in the world.

Also note that some of these towns are near the airport and there might be a bit of noise from it sometimes - but no worries, no planes between 11:30pm and 6am - another Swiss thing , possibly a convenient one Not all of the towns are affected equally though and in some you won't hear any noise at all (I've lived in the Regensdorf area for a while and certainly never noticed).

Use www.sbb.ch to get a feel how long it would take you to get from each of these towns to your workplace. The closest train station to your work will be Zurich Oerlikon (i.e. not the main station) or even Opfikon/Glattpark.

Thank you for the suggestions. Some of the town suggestions really help so I can go and have a nosey on the property websites. It also helps me prioritise what's important each time I look somewhere. Thanks again.

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Noise is an old chestnut in my experience. Perhaps more of an issue in old wooden building where noise carries. I'm in a modern block and can hear almost nothing from my neighbours. If they are up all night flushing the loo I would never know.

So, what we did was to rent a serviced apartment for 2 months in Zurich using http://cityappartements.ch/E/index.htm. It was small (couple of rooms) but fine for the short term. We left our furniture in storage in the UK.

During those 2 months we had a good look around and eventually settled on a nice apartment along the lake. We then brought our furniture over. Why not do something similar?

I hadn't lived in an apartment for many years before coming here, and wasn't keen on the idea. But then I discovered that it's what nearly everyone does, Personally, I could do without the gardening in any case -- though we still grow some veg and plenty of flowers on the balcony. That'll do me.

You can probably forget about buying a place to live here unless your job is exceptionally well paid. We have a nice flat but it's not a luxury penthouse. 2 beds, kitchen, lounge. Nice views. To buy, this sort of place would be about 1.5m Swissies.

Ask as many questions as you want about the move, but in general I'd say that there isn't much to worry about.

Good luck.
Thanks for the suggestion and it's a good one. As part of my relocation package, I get 90 days in temp accommodation, so I can almost treat it the same way you are talking about. Do you mind me asking which region you live in?

Lynds

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I think you should avoid having or buying a car in switzerland , espesically in zurich, because the roads are completey full in the rush hour, it is really annoying.
When in lived in zurich (more then 5 1/2 years) , i did not have a car , because it was not nessesary, you can go everywhere by public transport.
I did bought bicycles, for cycling around, but in zurich the fun cycling around became less and less, because there are so many cars and there is so less space.
When you have a car and you use it for communting, you have to pay twice for parking (at home and sometimes at the company), the areas for parking in the street are really limited and you have to fight for your spot.
Renting a flat in zurich was never easy and will be a fight aswell.

In the area , where you will be working , there are a lot of building construction works (a big hotel and a lot of new flats), it will be a kind of new part of zurich
(between Glattparkstrasse and Rietwiesenstrasse), you should be able the rent a flat in oerlikon , dübendorf, kloten, opfikon or Wallisellen.
So you will not need a car and save a lot of money.
Thank you, Blackbird. The town suggestions are helpful. I'll have a nosey later. The only reason I wanted a car was so I could go driving at the weekend. There's so much to see and do although I wouldn't buy one immediately.

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This has been a very interesting thread for me, and has prompted me to come out of the shadows and comment for the first time. I totally get where you are coming from Lynds, and have wondered many of the same things myself.

We (husband and I) are moving to Geneva at the end of February and are very daunted by the idea of finding somewhere to live in a market that sounds pretty difficult.

I wish you luck, and look forward to reading more about how you are getting on over the next few months. Certainly, finding this forum has been the most helpful thing I have done to date!!
Hey, let's keep in touch. Sounds like we could both do with the support!

Lynds

Last edited by 3Wishes; 19.01.2015 at 18:57. Reason: merging successive posts
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  #43  
Old 19.01.2015, 18:56
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

Lynds, have a play with this icon and click 'post reply' afterwards:
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  #44  
Old 19.01.2015, 18:59
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

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Bit harsh, you don't know how charming she is
lol..we Scottish gals have lots of charm, thank you very much
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Old 20.01.2015, 09:51
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

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lol..we Scottish gals have lots of charm, thank you very much
If that was true, I'd still be living in the homeland
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Old 20.01.2015, 10:47
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

You could also look at the areas down the lake, particularly the west coast/silver coast. Trains from there run directly to Oerlikon station, yes it would be a longer commute but you'd also be closer to the mountains
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Old 25.01.2015, 22:09
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

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You could also look at the areas down the lake, particularly the west coast/silver coast. Trains from there run directly to Oerlikon station, yes it would be a longer commute but you'd also be closer to the mountains
Thank you. I'll have a good look around and weigh up the pros and cons.

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If that was true, I'd still be living in the homeland
Touché
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  #48  
Old 27.01.2015, 14:43
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

I think Oerlikon could be a good option but another word of advice is to consider the council/local taxes that can vary considerably depending on where you live in Switzerland. I live in Seefeld which is a really great but pricey neighbourhood, 10 minutes walk from my place is another zone/council (not sure what the right terminology is) called Zollikon, there I would be paying less tax. Not sure what the exact saving would be as it depends on many factors (single, kids, overall salary etc) however a colleague of mine by moving from central Zurich to Zollikon saves about 4.000 Chf per annum.
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Old 27.01.2015, 15:00
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

should also perhaps mention that if you/ your employer will as you suggest offer you 90 days of temporary accommodation then i would recommend trying city stay AG, i was initially renting from them for 1 month as a temp but ended up staying with them for my whole year in Zurich.
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  #50  
Old 27.01.2015, 15:04
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

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I think Oerlikon could be a good option but another word of advice is to consider the council/local taxes that can vary considerably depending on where you live in Switzerland. I live in Seefeld which is a really great but pricey neighbourhood, 10 minutes walk from my place is another zone/council (not sure what the right terminology is) called Zollikon, there I would be paying less tax. Not sure what the exact saving would be as it depends on many factors (single, kids, overall salary etc) however a colleague of mine by moving from central Zurich to Zollikon saves about 4.000 Chf per annum.
True if you have to file a tax return. If you're taxed at source (which most foreigners here are: permit L or B, salary less than 120K/year) then the difference is precisely zero. Source tax rates are based on a cantonal average.
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Old 01.02.2015, 21:03
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Re: Finding a nice home in Zurich. I'm genuinely worried

Hi from a fellow Weegie! I live down the lake - by train I am in the centre of town within 20mins. I pay less tax than if I lived in town - more money to spend on creating that work-life balance! My apartment is really spacious and because it is a new-build, I don't hear a peep from my neighbours. I am happy to help with your search; I found it stressful too, but what's for you won't go by you..! Good luck!
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