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  #41  
Old 27.09.2016, 11:35
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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Of course. It's practically poverty, in the minds of some here. You should be lucky you don't have to live in a box under the next bridge...
I am still not completely clear as to where sarcasm ends and reality begins when it comes to the 120k subject
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  #42  
Old 27.09.2016, 11:38
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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Agreed it's a free market but Treverus and Samaire are right in this case. Landlords are reluctant to rent out cheapo, pokey apartments to high earners for precisely the reasons given above.
Yet you'd never see them renting it to indebted jobless people with gazillion of kids who really really need that apartment. I wonder why is that...

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It's a massive hassle to have tenants using cheap flats as a springboard for a couple of months until they find their intended, more upmarket, gaff.
You're just repeating what you heard elsewhere. This isn't entirely true in my opinion.

Yes, there's a hassle, but it goes both ways - it's not exactly free and effortless for the tenant to move apartments too.

If rent was really cheap and below market, the tenant would be probably considering himself lucky to get it and won't give it up easily until he outgrows the apartment. And you know, you don't get married or new kids several times a year.

When he does move out, it's also an opportunity for the landlord to increase rent to adjust it to the market.
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  #43  
Old 27.09.2016, 11:39
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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I understand where you come from, but since you can't find anything (and likely will continue to not find anything - cause see above), you need to change your approach.
But I have found places (around the 1500-1700 mark)...

Actually getting picked by the landlord is what I'm worried about.

2-3 of them I would have no problem agreeing to even from abroad without a viewing (if it was indeed the flat in the pictures, so a viewing would be required to confirm...Just explaining how decent a couple of them are)
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  #44  
Old 27.09.2016, 11:44
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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You're just repeating what you heard elsewhere. This isn't entirely true in my opinion.
So our sources are similar, then?
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  #45  
Old 27.09.2016, 11:49
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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I am still not completely clear as to where sarcasm ends and reality begins when it comes to the 120k subject
EF is not the platform to get a realistic sense of what you should earn in any given job, and/or what is a bad, average, good and very good salary. According to the twisted view of some people here, about 80% of Switzerland's population is effectively dirt poor, and it's a wonder they even survive at all.

120k is more than 1.5 times the average salary in CH. I'll let you draw your own conclusions.

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But I have found places (around the 1500-1700 mark)...

Actually getting picked by the landlord is what I'm worried about.

2-3 of them I would have no problem agreeing to even from abroad without a viewing (if it was indeed the flat in the pictures, so a viewing would be required to confirm...Just explaining how decent a couple of them are)
Are you still abroad then? Sorry in case I missed it.
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  #46  
Old 27.09.2016, 12:00
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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Are you still abroad then? Sorry in case I missed it.
Yep, I'm arriving in mid-october to start work on Nov 1st. seeing as I'm going from one job to another, those 2 weeks are all I have available. I'm doing all my research here and sending some e-mails to express interest in certain properties and so on but I'm just worried I won't have enough time.
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  #47  
Old 27.09.2016, 12:02
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So our sources are similar, then?
No. I've actually provided some arguments (as opposed to hearsay) to support my opinion. Care to debunk any of them?
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  #48  
Old 27.09.2016, 12:07
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

Hi Alexander,

just a word of support from me I'm in almost exactly the same situation--beginning working in January, similar expected income, minus family so I could've opened such a thread myself but cool that you did it, and it's great to read all the feedback too.

My personal strategy is:

0. plan to physically move to CH early in Dec

1. already now start looking for long-term rentals in Zürich (my budget is 1.8-3k)

2. if nothing gets secured by Nov from p.1.--go for a furnished/serviced/AirBnb appt for Dec++

My CH employer will support my application by being a reference point, but obviously my work permit won't be completed before I arrive, so I dunno if any agency/landlord would be willing to even talk to me before I get the permit in hands. Nevertheless I heard that sometimes "some" landlords can organize a Skype "interview" and even show the apartment during the call...will have to figure it out if that's true

Anyway good luck to both of us and to whoever else is in the same situation
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  #49  
Old 27.09.2016, 12:16
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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No. I've actually provided some arguments (as opposed to hearsay) to support my opinion. Care to debunk any of them?
It's still your "opinion", though isn't it? I can't debunk someone's subjective anecdotes, can I? Or did I miss the links to the sources that back up your opinions?

Demand for accommodation around Zurich far outstrips supply and it's logical that agencies and landlords will try to maximise their advantage to rent out to reliable people.

Of course there are short term lets - we used to have one in the building we are but it was a longterm let to a big institution and its employees used to bunk in there for 2 or 3 months till they got their permanent place.
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  #50  
Old 27.09.2016, 12:29
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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Hi Alexander,

just a word of support from me I'm in almost exactly the same situation--beginning working in January, similar expected income, minus family so I could've opened such a thread myself but cool that you did it, and it's great to read all the feedback too.

My personal strategy is:

0. plan to physically move to CH early in Dec

1. already now start looking for long-term rentals in Zürich (my budget is 1.8-3k)

2. if nothing gets secured by Nov from p.1.--go for a furnished/serviced/AirBnb appt for Dec++

My CH employer will support my application by being a reference point, but obviously my work permit won't be completed before I arrive, so I dunno if any agency/landlord would be willing to even talk to me before I get the permit in hands. Nevertheless I heard that sometimes "some" landlords can organize a Skype "interview" and even show the apartment during the call...will have to figure it out if that's true

Anyway good luck to both of us and to whoever else is in the same situation
You're in for some shaddy/risky business by trying to aim to have a flat BEFORE visiting it physically.

What could possibly go wrong:
-Scam
-Deposit issue
-Not liking the place for many reasons (noise, location, neighbors, etc...)
-Not being in good position to inspect the flat and get idea on the relationship you'll get with owner (broken items, bad fixes...)
-Eventually having to move shortly after for any above reasons with possible consequences (which all end losing money)
-many owners want to meet the prospect tenant in person

I could continue for long.

Only way is to get:
-temp accommodation (hotel, paid flats short term, backpackers, friends, colleagues, flatshare...)

Then visits, many visits, with solid application, a big smile and a lot of luck.

End of free support
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  #51  
Old 27.09.2016, 12:33
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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Then visits, many visits, with solid application, a big smile and a lot of luck.

End of free support
What would that include exactly? For me, it will be my first job abroad and all I have is my work contract and identification papers to show I'm an EU national. I've got some work references (which were used alongside my CV) but that's about it.
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  #52  
Old 27.09.2016, 12:40
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What would that include exactly? For me, it will be my first job abroad and all I have is my work contract and identification papers to show I'm an EU national. I've got some work references (which were used alongside my CV) but that's about it.
Do some search in this forum, there has been many times some good clues were explained.

The rest is valuable information acquired from experiences. I have been told I never been helpful and i'm only here to be pedant or something. So I don't want to prove these persons wrong by risking to help.

On another not helpful but pedant attempt, I find funny that you mention you're EU nationals. Experiences (and not my comments only) will teach you that there's several versions of being EU nationals depending on country.

In a simplified stereotyped way (but observed in reality) some landlords/agents will classify:
-Eastern europe EU nationals
-Crappy countries EU nationals (Greece haha)
-Less bad EU nationals (French)
etc...

I'll spare you facts and events who lead me to say the above.
Bottom line, try to make a DECENT Swiss application, and make it look "Swiss".
Do you have to specify your nationality during application? I don't think you do, I knew the law exactly but forgot. Do your research.

The rest is tricky, for example before SIGNING (and not applying, note the difference) the landlord must know your permis situation hence, guessing your nationality. Nonetheless it's not at application stage, you need to get in the position to sign the tenancy agreement for that to become a problem (not in your case if you^'re legal = not problem).
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  #53  
Old 27.09.2016, 13:08
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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Do some search in this forum, there has been many times some good clues were explained.

The rest is valuable information acquired from experiences. I have been told I never been helpful and i'm only here to be pedant or something. So I don't want to prove these persons wrong by risking to help.

On another not helpful but pedant attempt, I find funny that you mention you're EU nationals. Experiences (and not my comments only) will teach you that there's several versions of being EU nationals depending on country.

In a simplified stereotyped way (but observed in reality) some landlords/agents will classify:
-Eastern europe EU nationals
-Crappy countries EU nationals (Greece haha)
-Less bad EU nationals (French)
etc...

I'll spare you facts and events who lead me to say the above.
Bottom line, try to make a DECENT Swiss application, and make it look "Swiss".
Do you have to specify your nationality during application? I don't think you do, I knew the law exactly but forgot. Do your research.
I'm asking because most of the time it mentions paperwork that I don't actually have yet since I'm JUST moving there...If it was a move within Switzerland obviously I'd have a previous landlord reference, my current residence permit, a swiss credit check etc.

I'm mentioning EU national because the way I understand it it makes a difference (legally) with regards to the residential status.

I'll skip the crappy countries jab because although not all of us are like that (especially the ones moving abroad), for the most part we deserve it as a whole (in government terms)

So with respect to what has been mentioned in the forum already, all I can provide above and beyond what I have now from what I've read so far is a personal statement to show how much I want to be a part of the community and so on.

Despite all our other shortcomings as a nation, I hope you see the paradox in a Greek person having to "prove" that he's hospitable, social and "neighbourly" to a Swiss
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  #54  
Old 27.09.2016, 13:25
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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It's still your "opinion", though isn't it? I can't debunk someone's subjective anecdotes, can I? Or did I miss the links to the sources that back up your opinions?
This is my opinion backed by a bit of experience on both sides and reasoning.

I can't seem to find any good sources, but, well here's a quote I found from some news survey of landlords in Berlin: "Mehr als zwei Drittel der Vermieter (67 Prozent) wählen den Mieter mit dem höchsten Einkommen" (http://news.immobilienscout24.de/run...rn,114693.html). Yeah, it's not Switzerland, but they are close in many things.

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Demand for accommodation around Zurich far outstrips supply and it's logical that agencies and landlords will try to maximise their advantage to rent out to reliable people.
Exactly. And what better choice can you make than going with the highest earner, if you don't really know any of the applicants.
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  #55  
Old 27.09.2016, 13:25
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Despite all our other shortcomings as a nation, I hope you see the paradox in a Greek person having to "prove" that he's hospitable, social and "neighbourly" to a Swiss
Ok flag alert here!
I am not personally commenting on your nationality!
I have seen/experienced too much and it pauses a problem to some landlord/agents, the one who are going to "select" you (ie making your application into a tenancy agreement or a big waste of time and a trip to the paper bin).
For example, if I have to give one, I was told by an agent that they will reject my application because I was French. I then discussed about it in an useless way, and I stopped the arguments when I was told the landlord said so, end off. Yes first I got comments like "what if you leave the country"? to which I reply I have a job, and I pay 3 months deposit which should help prevent that inconvenience, no? NO. Period.

Anyway, another tips, often Swiss hate/avoid conflicts, so if you are in the position to justify yourself, its that you have done something wrong already.

Just try to comply with rules BEFORE and make a nice, suitable* applications.

Ok enough here.

*I get it, that's all you need to know. I won't help more, there's plenty of friendlier people here who could and some others who have (search).
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  #56  
Old 27.09.2016, 13:39
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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You're in for some shaddy/risky business by trying to aim to have a flat BEFORE visiting it physically.

What could possibly go wrong:
-Scam
-Deposit issue
-Not liking the place for many reasons (noise, location, neighbors, etc...)
-Not being in good position to inspect the flat and get idea on the relationship you'll get with owner (broken items, bad fixes...)
-Eventually having to move shortly after for any above reasons with possible consequences (which all end losing money)
-many owners want to meet the prospect tenant in person

I could continue for long.

Only way is to get:
-temp accommodation (hotel, paid flats short term, backpackers, friends, colleagues, flatshare...)

Then visits, many visits, with solid application, a big smile and a lot of luck.

End of free support
Thanks, I am doing my risk assessment, but sure thing your points are valid. Just some risk-mitigation thoughts along your points:

1) Scam, deposit, relationship with an owner: I'm looking primarily at agencies' offers at the moment, not from private owners. Am I being naïve, assuming that a recognized agency shall be a safer option with regards to these concerns?

2) Location: I'm primarily looking around the location of my future office (that is Zürich Hardbrücke station), in newer buildings. I am ready to "compromise" say for a 1-year, on living in a not-so-ideal place with regards to noise and neighbors...I've been renting 5 places in 3 different countries already, plus I'm a frequent traveler, so I kinda can imagine what one might expect I take it as I shall be eligible to get out of the contract w/o penalties after one year, or are one-year contracts not so common?

3) Inspection: I might have someone who is already there in Zürich to come and check the place for me for any obvious flaws.. The person is not a close friend, but I can trust his judgement on this.

4) Meeting owner in person: "the agency" point again; there's hardly anything else I can do from here, besides the Skype video-call. I don't think it's rational to fly over to Zürich just to see a potential place, w/o firm commitment to rent it out to me, should I like it, and I doubt that anyone would be willing to commit to it either..

Thanks for the free support btw--as a consultant I do truly appreciate all the helpful input!
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  #57  
Old 27.09.2016, 13:49
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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Ok flag alert here!
I am not personally commenting on your nationality!
I have seen/experienced too much and it pauses a problem to some landlord/agents, the one who are going to "select" you (ie making your application into a tenancy agreement or a big waste of time and a trip to the paper bin).
For example, if I have to give one, I was told by an agent that they will reject my application because I was French. I then discussed about it in an useless way, and I stopped the arguments when I was told the landlord said so, end off. Yes first I got comments like "what if you leave the country"? to which I reply I have a job, and I pay 3 months deposit which should help prevent that inconvenience, no? NO. Period.

Anyway, another tips, often Swiss hate/avoid conflicts, so if you are in the position to justify yourself, its that you have done something wrong already.

Just try to comply with rules BEFORE and make a nice, suitable* applications.

Ok enough here.

*I get it, that's all you need to know. I won't help more, there's plenty of friendlier people here who could and some others who have (search).
I was hoping the smileys would be enough to show I was joking

So just to clear things up... NO OFFENSE taken.

It was mostly a humourus cultural observation in that the sense of community comes very naturally to us and having to put it on paper so to speak feels very weird.

I didn't say that's all I needed to know. I've been made quite aware of the way rentals happen in Switzerland through these forums so I'm not expecting an easy ride. The stereotyping of my country won't help either.

I was just asking (since you mentioned it) what would be included in a solid, "swiss" application.

I've read all relevant threads in the forum but a lot of them mention paperwork that I cannot possibly have since it will be my first time there.

As I mentioned before I will have identity papers, work contract and I'll write a proper cover letter (although it seems silly to me ). And I was wondering if there is something else since you mentioned it.

P.S. As far as this is concerned:

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I am not personally commenting on your nationality
as I said, I was joking and did not take it seriously. However, the comment "but observed in reality" could be misunderstood. If you are referring to the observation that landlords do unfortunately classify applicants in such a way, that's fine. If you are referring to the observation of the stereotype being valid, it makes it personal.

I assumed it's the former, but I'm mentioning it since it might explain why you are occasionally misunderstood by other posters.

I DO appreciate and have taken in mind everything you posted Don't be so defensive.

Last edited by alexanderm; 27.09.2016 at 13:59.
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  #58  
Old 27.09.2016, 13:54
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I'm asking because most of the time it mentions paperwork that I don't actually have yet since I'm JUST moving there...
The main paper you really need for apartment applications is a Betreibungsauskunft. Without it most landlords would toss away your application immediately as unserious. You can get that paper as soon as you register for residence at your temp accomodation. Make plenty of copies. Sometimes, not always, they ask for residence permit which you won't have for some days initially. Anything else really is optional. Mainly just visit and apply for as many apartments as you can.

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1) Scam, deposit, relationship with an owner: I'm looking primarily at agencies' offers at the moment, not from private owners. Am I being naïve, assuming that a recognized agency shall be a safer option with regards to these concerns?
Doesn't really matter. Most apartments are run by agencies anyway and the "private owners" ads you probably saw online most of the time are a previous tenant looking for his replacement.

To avoid 99% of the scams, always visit the apartment and be cautious about unusual arrangements in rental contract.

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I take it as I shall be eligible to get out of the contract w/o penalties after one year, or are one-year contracts not so common?
You can get out of the contract practically any time if you can find a replacement tenant.

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4) Meeting owner in person
Not done here. It's landlords' market, not renters'
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Old 27.09.2016, 13:58
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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The main paper you really need for apartment applications is a Betreibungsauskunft. Without it most landlords would toss away your application immediately as unserious. You can get that paper as soon as you register for residence at your temp accomodation. Make plenty of copies. Sometimes, not always, they ask for residence permit which you won't have it for some days initially. Anything else really is optional. Mainly just visit and apply for as many apartments as you can.
Wait...So I can register as a resident on a temporary address such as airbnb or a hotel? And a Betreibungsauskunft is actually relevant even if I've never lived/worked in Switzerland before?
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  #60  
Old 27.09.2016, 14:00
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Re: Rental accommodation search horror stories...

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Thanks, I am doing my risk assessment, but sure thing your points are valid. Just some risk-mitigation thoughts along your points:

1) Scam, deposit, relationship with an owner: I'm looking primarily at agencies' offers at the moment, not from private owners. Am I being naïve, assuming that a recognized agency shall be a safer option with regards to these concerns?

2) Location: I'm primarily looking around the location of my future office (that is Zürich Hardbrücke station), in newer buildings. I am ready to "compromise" say for a 1-year, on living in a not-so-ideal place with regards to noise and neighbors...I've been renting 5 places in 3 different countries already, plus I'm a frequent traveler, so I kinda can imagine what one might expect I take it as I shall be eligible to get out of the contract w/o penalties after one year, or are one-year contracts not so common?

3) Inspection: I might have someone who is already there in Zürich to come and check the place for me for any obvious flaws.. The person is not a close friend, but I can trust his judgement on this.

4) Meeting owner in person: "the agency" point again; there's hardly anything else I can do from here, besides the Skype video-call. I don't think it's rational to fly over to Zürich just to see a potential place, w/o firm commitment to rent it out to me, should I like it, and I doubt that anyone would be willing to commit to it either..

Thanks for the free support btw--as a consultant I do truly appreciate all the helpful input!
1) In Vaud, at least, agencies were not considering any applicants who has not seen the place. Seeing the very very very high competition, I assume it's often similar in your area.

2) Good you are flexible. Nonetheless you'll need to do lot of research on cleaning departure, deposits, how to do handover, how to properly finish your lease, possible duplicate paying rent for the transition period, etc... On top of additional costs like moving twice, fixed expenses like mandatory mailbox tax, etc... Otherwise you're in for lot of lost money.

3) Ok then. Nonetheless you'd need to be extra careful for the first inspection for the "etat des lieux". 1 bad move could cost you hundreds/thousands chf, year(s) later when moving out.

4) Temp staying somewhere seems the best in your situation.
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