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EXPLAINED: Where in Switzerland are property prices and rents rising the most?

Helena Bachmann in Geneva
Helena Bachmann in Geneva - [email protected] • 4 Jan, 2023 Updated Wed 4 Jan 2023 14:04 CEST
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Rents in Ticino (here the city of Lugano) have increased significantly. Image by Andreas from Pixabay

Properties in Switzerland continue to be expensive, with prices increasing substantially in some in-demand regions for buyers and tenants alike.

By the end of 2022, both real estate prices and rents have gone up in Switzerland — more in some regions than in others.

This is the finding of the Swiss Real Estate Offer Index, released on Wednesday by the SMG Swiss Marketplace Group and the real estate consulting firm CIFI.

Where, and by how much, have the prices increased?

Prices have gone up by 1.1 percent on average in December; over the entire 2022, they rose by 4.3 percent, though some parts of the country experienced hikes exceeding 8 percent.

The three regions with the highest price hikes in 2022 are:

  • Ticino, with an increase of 8.4 percent
  • Greater Zurich area, 6.1 percent
  • The Lake Geneva region (Geneva and Vaud), 3.8 percent

As for other parts of Switzerland, rents rose by 3.2 percent in Eastern Switzerland, 3 percent in Central Switzerland, 2.7 percent in the Mittelland, and 2.3 percent in the Northwest.

This translates into a price increase of 4.7 percent for single-family homes, and 6.2 percent for apartments over the whole of 2022.

Interestingly, the rents in Ticino have increased the most— even more than in the traditionally high-priced areas like Zurich and Geneva.

This development is contrary to the trend observed at the beginning of 2022, when rents in Lugano, Ticino’s largest city, fell by more than 10 percent in all housing categories.

The reason cited by real estate experts at that time was that “the hoped-for economic recovery thanks to faster [train] connections with the rest of Switzerland has not materialised so far.”

In fact, experts predicted that rents in the region would decline — which clearly hasn't happened.

What’s ahead for 2023?

The shortage of available accommodations, especially in cantons of Geneva, Zurich and Zug,  will drive the rents upwards, according to a study released in December by Raiffeisen bank.

Landlords will also expect tenants to compensate for increased costs of energy.

In terms of ownership, higher mortgages linked to the increase in key interest rates in September and December of last year, mean that buying a house could become too expensive for most people.

“It is not excluded that mortgage interest rates will reach 3 to 4 percent," said Donato Scognamiglio, director of real estate platform Iazi.

However, if you are not hankering to live in the high-cost regions like the Geneva and Zurich area, and are willing to settle in rural regions, you can find more affordable housing.

For Switzerland, this means properties that can be purchased for under 1 million francs, and sometimes even for less than 500,000 francs.

You can read more about these properties in this article:

REVEALED: The most affordable places to buy a home in Switzerland

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Helena Bachmann in Geneva 2023/01/04 14:04

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