Key Contacts

Residential Property in Switzerland

Knight Frank is the only global property company operating in the Swiss residential market to be a truly integrated network that offers property throughout Switzerland.

With representative offices in the key locations including Geneva, Nyon, Lausanne, Vevey, Neuchâtel, Zürich (Gold Coast and Horgen), Lugano, Chur (St Moritz and Davos), Villars, Verbier, Crans-Montana and Gstaad.

This network of carefully selected agencies can assist you in your search for city apartments, lakeside residences, country houses, ski chalets and exclusive estates throughout this truly international country.

Montreux / Fontanivent

Montreux / Fontanivent

asking price CHF 7'400'000

Verbier, Valais

Verbier, Valais

price on application

"We are so happy with the house and we are looking forward to moving soon. Thank you once again for all of your help and kind support throughout the years."  
Purchaser, June 2015

Buying property in Switzerland

In today’s ever challenging economic conditions the lure of a stable economy with excellent security and education options for your family, not to mention the lifestyle and the wonderful quality of life available it is little surprise that Switzerland remains at the forefront of people’s relocation plans.

However the law on acquisition of real estate in Switzerland has numerous restrictions for foreigners (otherwise referred to as “Lex Koller”). This law clearly distinguishes between categories of real estate (residential and commercial) and categories of purchasers such as those interested to purchase a property in Switzerland as a holiday home, to relocate their main residence to Switzerland or even to establish their permanent business in Switzerland.

It is therefore fairly difficult for non-Swiss residents to purchase property in Switzerland unless they are located within the designated “Holiday Zones” these zones are predominately found in certain ski resorts as well as the immediate areas surrounding both Montreux or Lugano. With all these areas the maximum size allowed is 200 sq m of official living space (this does not include balconies or basement areas).

Of course there are occasional allowances such as if a buyer’s children are to be educated in Switzerland or if they can purchase through a Swiss based trust or company. All of these are possible but must be negotiated with the authorities on your behalf by a local lawyer.

Working closely with the legal and tax advisory firm Transforma Consulting, we have produced a buyer’s guide that will give you an introduction to this complicated legal system as well as a brief summary of taxes triggered by the purchase of real estate.

If you have any further questions then please feel free to contact us when we would be delighted to discuss this process in more detail with you. 

Why use us

Managed by Alex Koch de Gooreynd within the International Department in London, our Swiss network is focused on the prime internationally renowned locations. This team of professionals are fully integrated and incentivised along with our global network and systems in order to give our client’s properties greater exposure to the key buyers both in Switzerland and further afield.

Please do contact us for an informal discussion, and to see how we can help you.

"After the rhetoric of recent years appeared to be restricting the arrival of foreign residents, the residential market slowed considerably. The sudden decision by the Swiss National Bank to allow the Swiss Franc to float against the Euro in January also gave further cause for concern with buyers understandably reticent. The mood however seems to be changing. The Swiss Franc remains under control and mood towards the wealthy foreign arrivals has softened. This attitude was evident in November when the country voted to retain the lump sum form of taxation and again last month with the inheritance tax decision. Buyers have responded positively with renewed confidence both in the Swiss economy and the ongoing recovery of the property market. With ongoing concern in the Eurozone, Switzerland remains a key destination for families seeking security, stability and world renown education facilities."  
Alexander Koch de Gooreynd, Head of the Swiss Desk