Expert Info

Posted by
on 25 Aug 2011
I've heard it's super difficult to find housing in Zurich. Any tips for an American unfamiliar with life overseas and used to life in a small town?
Stephanie on 25 Aug 2011
Well, for a small-time gal at least you know how to research ;) The Zurich housing market is indeed tight, though not as bad as it was prior to the recession. Still, though, there's a shortage of available accommodation, and you can expect there to be tons of applicants for every free apartment (even as many as 50).

Securing accommodation in Zurich is not as simple as a first-come-first serve basis. The real estate agency and the landlord go through the applications and pick the most suitable tenant. So once you  have your residence permit, which you'll need, try and arrive at appointments first, fill out an application for soon as, and come prepared with additional paperwork (like your employment contract, proof of solvency, and something known as a Auszug aus dem Betreibunsregister, which shows you have no oustanding debt. You can get this last document from the local constituency office, a place known as a Kreisburo.

For more useful info check out the "Renting Property in Zurich" page on Expat Arrivals.com
Anonymous (not verified) on 26 Aug 2012
Be prepared to over pay rent for little in return... And you have to compete. Personal information needs to divulged... Salary, bonus, nationality, smoker, kids, cats, underwear colour, preference for laundry, education etc etc. Best to get a relocation consultant on hire to help withthe locals. Some locals will not rent to expats and blame expats for the excessively high rents which provide a profit on mortgage amd maintenance by 100% + If you do not want to compete or pay as much look in the small villages surrounding zurich with great transport links to the city and nice country living only as far as 20-30 minutes to the city center
Anonymous (not verified) on 29 Nov 2013
Services like flatsforexpats.com try to avoid these problems by connecting expats looking and expats searching for a flat..

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