'How to buy my first home in Switzerland' guide | Step 10 - The move

Last updated: March 07, 2017

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Damn, you did a good job in the previous article with all these hard workshops.
At that point of time, I was so excited by the idea to soon live in the dream home we had crafted.

Let’s get moving! The frugal way please.

3 months before the move

Your rental lease

With most of the rental leases, it will be at minimum three months in advance that you have to announce your leave.

By experience, I can’t help but to recommend to take a buffer of one or two weeks between your move and the actual end date of the lease. This will allow you to make the move on the first week-end, and then to clean your previous apartment the week-end after.

As we talk about cleaning, I often heard that it was impossible to clean an apartment properly in Switzerland without having money reclaimed on the rental deposit. That’s not true! We did it, so you can too.
Come on, you won’t pay CHF 200+ for something you could do, that will avoid you to pay a gym subscription, and that will add up cash to your investments!

Make me a favor: go clean this apartment, get your entire rent guarantee back, and invest it into nice ETFs.

Declutter with Marie Kondo

If you have hard times to find motivation to declutter your home, use your move as a trigger.
Read the book “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” and get started.

Create space in your life, it is life changing.

Invite your friends to your moving party

Moves are part of friendships. They reinforce them.
To make sure that everyone is on time the D-day, I followed the next steps:

Lovely kids

Children are cute and all. But a move is definitely not a place for them to play in, as they could hurt themselves.
Ping their grandparents three months in advance so they can take care of them.

2 months before the move

Rent your truck

As you understood in the chapter above, you won’t pay someone to prevent you to get healthier and richer.
You will load your boxes into the truck by yourself. Hence you need a truck.

Check with your acquaintances in case they happen to have one.
Else, find a rental company and reserve one.
For a 4.5 rooms, and a move within 20-40kms, one day is more than enough. I’m sure you need the truck only for half a day if the rental company allows such timeframes.
As a reference, we rented ours for CHF 209 from 8h to 17h on a Saturday. It was a 20m3.

1 month before the move

Package everything

We used the last three week-ends before the move to put everything into boxes.
Think about it in advance to avoid busy periods at work, and to not plan any social events on week-ends.

Focused hard work will help you to get through this step faster and stress-free.

There are some things such as kitchen appliances that you will need until the very last moment. What we did was to package these items nevertheless, but keep their boxes opened. It helped to have a clear view of where we stood with our progress.

Gentle reminders

This is also the good timing to remind your family and friends about the moving-party date.

1 week before the move

Close the boxes

Finalize boxes. If you’re really disorganized, you won’t need this blogpost to notice that’s almost the only single thing left to do at this point in time.

I’ve heard funny stories of people who, the morning of the move, count on their friends to actually put stuff into the boxes.

You don’t wanna be one of those.

You will be way more efficient if all (I mean ALL) your stuff is well packaged, and only wait to be loaded into the truck.


The custom (or is it only mine?) is to put a notice for your neighbors to know that there is some noise to expect, as well as some cars and trucks that might be on their way during the move.


Don’t tell anyone, but the constructor was kind enough to give us the key some days in advance so that we could already get our new washing machine delivered in the basement instead of a delivery at our previous home that we should have moved a few days later…
If you can negotiate this, go for it as we also used this opportunity to bring in the new apartment all the fragile stuff (TV, lights, paintings, etc.). It helped to not stress out during the D-day.

The evening before the move

At this point of time, you should be all set for the D-day. Don’t forget to keep scotch tape and some free boxes for the last items you may have forgot to package.

A practical advice: sleep on the matress directly on the floor, and roll it up when you wake up. This way you can already dismantle the bed beforehand (i.e. not the morning of the move).

The D-day morning

Play Lego!

You need to maximize the space available in the truck. Really, try to play it the Lego-way.
You should do at maximum two round trips. If you’re really minimalist (not like me), even one should be enough.
You will gain time and efforts doing so.

Take a step back

Also, make sure to enjoy the process of moving, so that you actually realize it.
Enjoy your friends, make it a party, and have fun.

The D-day evening

Once you’re done, let your friends get back to their home, take a shower, and meet at a restaurant where you will invite them to say thank you.
This money will be way better invested into friendships than in a moving company.

Next step: Enjoy!

Congratulations, sincerely. You made it up until this point. You did move, the frugal minimalist way.

It will now be time to truly enjoy what you’ve waited for so long: be a home owner.
That’s what we will discuss in the last article of this serie.

If you have any tips and tricks about moving, I’d be glad if you could share them in the comments’ section below.

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