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  #1  
Old 08.08.2009, 23:51
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Moving to Zurich with a young family

Hi,

It's looking very likely that I'll be moving to Zurich in the near future and I'd like to ask you all where would be a good place to live with a young family? I've got a 10 month old and a 3 year old...so playgrounds / parks are a necessity!

Somewhere affordable is really important too...so we don't mind living outside of Zurich if anyone could recommend anywhere in particular?

Thanks
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  #2  
Old 09.08.2009, 00:12
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

Things we have noticed -

public transport is excellent. However, if you want to drive a lot then better to live further out of town. It takes pretty serious commitment to become car-free if you are already very car-dependent...

Assume you are going to live in an apartment, and if you are normally used to living in a house, embrace the change. One advantage of living in an apartment closer to town is that you don't have to shovel snow - we live in Witikon in a big complex and our paths were cleared by 7:15am every morning through winter, except for one day when there was a really big amount of snow in the main centre and I think they cleared that first and our paths weren't done until the afternoon...they clear the paths from our front doors, down the footpath to the bus stop...perfect

There are plenty of great parks - everywhere - and plenty of fantastically challenging (and much more 'dangerous') places to play, than in Australia - and in the long-run probably 'safer' as your kids will actually learn to take responsiblity for their own actions, and be tougher and healthier for it...they even have 'paddling pools' in some of the local parks with clean water for the kids to swim outdoors...plenty of water features and ponds too...

I would suggest first deciding how much rent you are prepared to pay, and then try to match that to options from the website...www.homegate.ch - you can choose localities, and cut and paste the address into google maps, and you can also use google maps to check the SBB (public transport) routes...and how long it will take on an ordinary day to get from home to work or home to shops etc...

Personally, we found a happy 'medium' option in 8053 which is under 30 minutes door-to-door by public transport to my husband's work or the main train station - and we got a good deal because ours was a 'short-term' lease...but we traded that off with an archaic washing roster (3 days on then 10 days in between), no dishwasher, no safety features on the electrical systems (power points are 'live' all the time) and an old apartment with peeling paint...and third floor - which is a bit of a hassle with three children plus the shopping...on the 'up' side the online supermarket (migros Le Shop - www.leshop.ch) have had no problem at all delivering our orders to our front door up three flights of stairs...

Look for apartments that are advertised as 'kid friendly' - then you can't feel too embarrassed that your kids are making lots of noise...

That's a start anyway, the 'where shall I live' thing is really a 'how long is a piece of string question' and one that has been asked by every expat...we worked out our budget (we were looking for anything under 2000chf a month including the 'extras')...but we know other expats that pay 4000chf a month for almost new apartments with lake views...
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Old 09.08.2009, 08:01
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

We live in Oerlikon, and there are tons of young children here. Also, there are a good number of flats with the basic layout: open living room/dining room, kitchen (small but okay), three bedrooms and two toilets (one with shower, one with bath), with total area of just above 100 to 120 sq meters. Rent for a three bedroom (a.k.a. 4 1/2 room) starts from around 2400.

There are also playgrounds, and though they're fairly small, they are certainly fine for younger kids (sandboxes, swings, stuff to climb on).

Another big plus is that there are many kinderkrippen (day care) centers around here, as well as large grocery stores (that are open late for Swiss standards-8:00pm on week days! 5:00pm on Saturday!)

As for transportation, Bahnhof Oerlikon is a great hub-it's very easy to get to the airport and the mainstation (Hauptbanhof) from there.

So, it's convenient. Downside: not exactly swiss charm.

If you want to get an idea of how much green area there is, try
http://map.search.ch/
If you type 8000 for the address, you'll get Zürich center, 8050 is Oerlikon.
It's also nice because you can see where the grocery stores, bus stops, etc. are in a given area.

For public transportation, try
http://www.zvv.ch/en/
They can give you door-to-door times, and it's scarily accurate.

Good luck!
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  #4  
Old 09.08.2009, 09:58
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

On Homegate as mentioned above, there is also a tax calculator.

Every community here has a different tax rate so you can see
whether it is convenient to work and calculate your takehome
pay.

The word in German is "Steuerrechner".
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Old 09.08.2009, 16:31
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

For information about the city, have a look at this thread, too:

http://www.englishforum.ch/housing-g...rich-city.html
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  #6  
Old 09.08.2009, 21:58
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

Thanks for all your comments...that's really helpful. This site is excellent!
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Old 30.05.2012, 04:22
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

Quote:
View Post
Things we have noticed -

public transport is excellent. However, if you want to drive a lot then better to live further out of town. It takes pretty serious commitment to become car-free if you are already very car-dependent...

Assume you are going to live in an apartment, and if you are normally used to living in a house, embrace the change. One advantage of living in an apartment closer to town is that you don't have to shovel snow - we live in Witikon in a big complex and our paths were cleared by 7:15am every morning through winter, except for one day when there was a really big amount of snow in the main centre and I think they cleared that first and our paths weren't done until the afternoon...they clear the paths from our front doors, down the footpath to the bus stop...perfect

There are plenty of great parks - everywhere - and plenty of fantastically challenging (and much more 'dangerous') places to play, than in Australia - and in the long-run probably 'safer' as your kids will actually learn to take responsiblity for their own actions, and be tougher and healthier for it...they even have 'paddling pools' in some of the local parks with clean water for the kids to swim outdoors...plenty of water features and ponds too...

I would suggest first deciding how much rent you are prepared to pay, and then try to match that to options from the website...www.homegate.ch - you can choose localities, and cut and paste the address into google maps, and you can also use google maps to check the SBB (public transport) routes...and how long it will take on an ordinary day to get from home to work or home to shops etc...

Personally, we found a happy 'medium' option in 8053 which is under 30 minutes door-to-door by public transport to my husband's work or the main train station - and we got a good deal because ours was a 'short-term' lease...but we traded that off with an archaic washing roster (3 days on then 10 days in between), no dishwasher, no safety features on the electrical systems (power points are 'live' all the time) and an old apartment with peeling paint...and third floor - which is a bit of a hassle with three children plus the shopping...on the 'up' side the online supermarket (migros Le Shop - www.leshop.ch) have had no problem at all delivering our orders to our front door up three flights of stairs...

Look for apartments that are advertised as 'kid friendly' - then you can't feel too embarrassed that your kids are making lots of noise...

That's a start anyway, the 'where shall I live' thing is really a 'how long is a piece of string question' and one that has been asked by every expat...we worked out our budget (we were looking for anything under 2000chf a month including the 'extras')...but we know other expats that pay 4000chf a month for almost new apartments with lake views...
excellent post.
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  #8  
Old 30.05.2012, 09:01
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

Have a look at uster, having moved here a few months ago with my young family with no german skills i have found that that Uster has alot to offer. Parks, forests, near by lakes, and a womens association centre which is all in english and holds 3-4 play groups a week, has german lessons with childcare and has an english speaking pre-kindergarten attached also.
Its a great way to meet other expats.
Trains run to zurich from Uster also every 5-10mins.
We found that you pay alot more rent the closer you live to zurich for normally smaller spaces. The outside areas offer more space for a better price range.

As one poster already said be aware that you may have to realise that most people live in appartments out here.
Coming from a house with a large garden it was quite hard to get our head round apartment living but its actually been fine and we have a park just outside our place with a big green area to run around.

Good luck to you
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Old 30.05.2012, 10:26
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

I regret not considering Uster for the reasons you cite. Connections seem excellent, and already we go to Greifensee a fair bit.
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Old 30.05.2012, 10:56
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

Quote:
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Good luck to you
Give the orginal post was from 2009, I guess the original poster never made it to CH!

But I guess your info will come in useful for someone out there!
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  #11  
Old 02.06.2012, 22:09
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Re: Moving to Zurich with a young family

We went through this about a year and a half ago. I realize the initial post is dated, but I read through everything I could find on the site for this kind of information, so this still might be valuable. We ended up in Fallanden, at the northern end of Griefensee lake. Its almost like a bedroom community for Zurich. I'm downtown Zurich in 25 minutes, compared to most of my colleagues who commute 10-15 even though they live in Zurich. Its a great place, very international population, everything you need, and lots of areas with few cars. Inventive playgrounds abound for the kids. A great benefit for the newcomer trying to organize a family arrival is that you can find an apartment much easier than in Zurich. Then there is the lake next door. Rent a row boat or head to a badi 5-10 minutes away by bike or car.
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