Short-term housing in Switzerland

Conditions and alternatives for short-term stays

Short-term housing in Switzerland

Expats looking to stay in Switzerland for less than a year or so often come across fierce competition for the apartment they want. Unfortunately, because of the high demand, landlords and estate agencies rarely bother renting their property for a short stays. That being said, there are an increasing number of options available for temporary expats.

Rental burdens  

One rental condition that complicates short-term rentals is the minimum 90 days notice period for most rentals in Switzerland. That can even extend to six months, which could be longer than the entire time you are planning to stay in Switzerland in the first place.

Just like in most countries, a deposit of between one and three month’s rent is needed when renting a flat or room in Switzerland. There aren’t normally any issues with getting the deposit back when you leave.

Some contracts require a guarantor as well as a deposit, who will be responsible for paying your rent if you cannot. This can pose a problem, as before moving to Switzerland you may not know someone who can (or is willing) to be your guarantor.

Because of these terms and the high demand of rentals, estate agencies can be very particular when choosing their tenants. They are often looking for that ‘perfect person’, who has no pets, doesn’t smoke, and has a healthy savings account. They will also prioritise long term contracts, sometimes going up to eight to ten years.

Finding short-term accommodation

Finding short-term accommodation poses quite a challenge then, but more options are entering the market. Unlike many countries, subletting is legal and fairly common in Switzerland, and is worth considering as a temporary housing option. There are sites dedicated to subletting opportunities in Switzerland, like , which make finding a place relatively easy.  

Subletting has the advantage over finding your own place in that all the utilities and things like internet and TV are already set up. If you’re only staying for a month or so, it may seem like too much effort to bother doing it yourself for such a short time. Not only that, but good luck finding an internet provider that is willing to give you a contract for less than a year. That being said, a few companies like UMS Temporary Housing  have started to address this problem, offering flats for as little as one month with everything already set up.

A solution for every need

So even though it can be complicated to find a rental contract for a few months, the number of short-term solutions for houses, rooms, apartments and studios are growing, which helps compensate for this problem. Whether you’re a single expat looking to meet people or a family moving together, you’ll be able to find something appropriate.

Further reading

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