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Looking for Accommodation

DISCLAIMER : Please take note that the Welcome Center does not own or manage any properties, we guide you through the process of finding accommodation.

We would like to warn you about real estate ads published on various platforms. Attempted scams using fake ads are becoming more and more common. If you come across an exchange in which you are asked to make a payment, please contact us so that we can verify it’s legitimacy.

Finding accommodation in Geneva is a long and complex process.
We strongly recommend that you start looking for accommodation in Geneva’s private market 1 to 2 months before your arrival. There is no point in looking further in advance, as the ads will not have been published yet. However, you can set up alerts on the websites to find out more about the real estate market and the procedures involved (see also the sub-section “Applying for accommodation via a régie/real estate agency in Geneva“).

Golden rule: Apply. Apply. Apply! For every flat you apply for, 50 other people are also applying. If you persevere, you’ll end up getting a flat.
Make sure that your application file is complete and ready to send for each application.

Visiting an apartment

Once you have found an ad that matches your criteria and budget, contact the régie to arrange a viewing. The most commonly used procedures for visits are:

  • Go to the régie to collect the keys to the flat, leaving your ID card as a guarantee, visit the flat and return the keys.
  • Organise a visit with the current tenant (virtual visits possible via WhatsApp)
  • Go to the group visit (the date and time are usually indicated in the ad).

If you are not in Geneva yet, the Welcome Center can visit a few accommodations for you and either join you by videoconference or send you photos after the visit.

If you are interested in an accommodation after the visit, apply on the same day with all the necessary documents (see section “Applying for accommodation via a régie/real estate agency in Geneva“).

General Accommodation Search Engines

The main search engines for (unfurnished) accommodation are as follows:

Other interesting platforms

CIGUE Sublet PlatformCreate an account to have access
CAGI Housing PlatformYou can register as we are members of the CAGI
CERN Housing MarketplaceMainly reserved for new CERN staff/researchers
Welcome Center’s Housing PlatformCreate an account to have access
GLOCALSPlatform based on ads posted by individuals with different accommodation options
Flat sharesFlat Shares
La carte des colocsFlat Shares & Sublets

Facebook Groups

Facebook Groups contain a large number of ads from private individuals for handing over or taking over leases or for flat shares.

Be careful: there are a lot of scams, and many people get lost in them. If you have any doubts, contact the Welcome Center and we will have a look at the ad.

TypeFacebook Group
AllGENEVE à louer – bouche à oreille
AllGeneva expats
Flat sharingLa carte des colocs
Flat sharingGrand Genève chambre à louer
ApartmentsLocation/échange appartement Genève et alentours

Good to Know

  • The rent for an accommodation is non-negotiable.
  • The start date of a contract is also non-negotiable. It is usually set for the 1st or 15th of a month. This means that you will have to pay the rent from the start date of the contract, even if you arrive later.
  • Expenses include hot and cold water, heating and maintenance of communal areas.
  • Electricity is the tenants’ responsibility, who must take out a contract with the SIG for Geneva.
  • The Wi-Fi connection is also the tenants’ responsibility.