Advice on buying real estate in Switzerland

Yes but they would be living in that house “now”. It’s not a pay something today and only get the keys in 10 years. Sure she wouldn’t become a homeowner immediately but it would be on her way towards that, in that house. I can see a lot of value in that.

Mietkauf (20 chars…)

In a rent or buy agreement, your “rent” is technically made up of two parts:

  1. The actual, fair-value rent for the property.
  2. An installment payment towards the possible future purchase of the property, normally with a markup to account for inflation.

Only the second part actually counts towards a future purchase of the property.

In most cases, the property will be overvalued somewhat to account for the fact that you may actually choose to buy it (rent-to-buy dealers generally account for a fair percentage of owners not buying in the end, due to changing life or financial situations).

It would also be important to check whether the property is a free-hold (you own the land or a share of it), or a leasehold (you only own the building, or a share of it, but not the land, and you have to pay rent on the land which can change over time). These kinds of deals are often designed to lure buyers into potentially expensive leaseholds.

But like FIRE-evening said, get the contract reviewed by a lawyer who specialized in real estate.


Yup properties springing up around me are now charging 12k+ a year ground rent on top of the 1.4m for the house…

I’d never buy a leasehold. You only own tthe depreciating asset (house) but not the appreciating asset (land).


But it gives you the opportunity to buy an apartment/house for much less than the ones in the neighbourhood (especially interesting if you want to live cheap by the lake).

Who cares, what happens in 70 years - it‘s not your problem anymore :slight_smile:
Banks are also financing it if the lease is not ending in earlier than ca. 15y.

I am glad to hear that some people share my opinion. It’s true that when we are present on forums, I believe we all seek financial independence in one way or another. We are all on the path towards FIRE, but we don’t all start with the same background and opportunities. That’s why this opportunity seemed so good to me from my perspective because I’ve come a long way, and I’m not sure if I can ever achieve FIRE. I come from a family where everyone is in debt without exception.
However, becoming a homeowner and having an emergency fund and money for my third pillar, to me, is already a victory. Now I’m lost again, hahaha.

The journey teaches us a lot. I’ve often had to postpone my plans and while the time preparing for the circumstances to be right is excruciating, it also allows me to better understand what I truly want and how to deal with the barriers that are on the way.

780k for a 4.5 room flat seems a lot to me but I don’t live in the Zürich/Geneva area. How tied are you with the region you are living in now? Other, cheaper opportunities should exist elsewhere. If you are willing to share a bit more about your situation, we could help explore other options (though I’m afraid some doors are probably closed as some places are just too expensive even for very well off people).

If the garden had a huge appeal to you, agricultural land is usually cheap, though it requires some efforts to get your hands on some, as farmers have first shot on buying it. There again, availability varies from place to place.

I have found watching my net worth grow these last few years very empowering, so I would encourage you to keep going that way, keep your dreams in mind and focus on setting yourself for a life you enjoy while setting assets aside to give you the options you are wanting to pursue.

Edit: Following @dbu’s comment below, I seem to be detached from current appartment prices…

That would be considered ‘cheap’ there, probably double the amount for that size. :sweat_smile:

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