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  • Do you rent out any flats?
    No. We are not a cooperative and we do NOT rent out any apartments. What we offer is a search subscription for new listings. We monitor all housing cooperatives in the greater Zurich area and send our subscribers an email when a new suitable cooperative apartment or an apartment owned by the City of Zurich becomes available. We cannot influence the application and rental process. We simply provide information about available apartments.
  • Do you have an app?
    Unfortunately we don't have any skills in this area and it's therefore not possible for us to create an app. Perhaps we will find a way in the future.
  • Approximately how many apartments does GenossenSchaffen find per week?
    This is variable. According to our statistics, around 15-25 Genossenschaft apartments are advertised across all websites most weeks.
  • How many people have been able to get a cooperative apartment through GenossenSchaffen?
    Unfortunately we have no data on this because we cannot track who actually gets the apartments. What is certain, however, is that GenossenSchaffen guarantees our subscribers that they will be among the first to be informed about new apartment advertisements on cooperative websites.
  • How many cooperative websites do you search?
    In the greater Zurich area we monitor nearly 100 cooperatives in real-time. Out of these, around 70 advertise new flats only on their websites. The rest use portals such as homegate. We also send out links to those apartments.
  • I would like to adjust my search criteria, how do I do that?
    This is very easy to do in the customer portal. There you can choose: - which apartment sizes interest you - whether you only want to get apartments in the city itself - whether you would also like to receive links to apartments owned by the City of Zurich
  • How long will it take for me to find a cooperative flat?
    That's very variable. You can expect it to take several months for sure as it also requires a little bit of luck. We know that some of our subscribers took about 4 months to find a cooperative flat.
  • How can I cancel my subscription?
    It's very simple: Either you go to the customer portal and cancel your subscription there, or you use an unsubscribe link that can be found at the end of the emails with links to apartments. When canceling, you can choose whether you no longer want to receive emails immediately (e.g. because you have found an apartment) or whether the subscription should continue until the end of the payment period.
  • I am looking for a cooperative apartment in another canton. Can you help?
    GenossenSchaffen is constantly expanding and we are also working on integrating other large areas (including Basel, Bern, Geneva, Lausanne). Check back in a few months and your desired city might already be there!
  • What is a Genossenschaft?
    Genossenschaften are organizations that manage and rent properties on a non-profit basis. They value a sense of community and reasonable living space and are often family-friendly. The rents are significantly lower than when real estate companies or private individuals act as landlords. In order to live in a Genossenschaft apartment, in most cases you have to join the corresponding Genossenschaft. A capital share (not unlike the rental deposit that would otherwise be required) must be deposited, which will be refunded when you leave.
  • Are there any regulations regarding the size of the apartment?
    Most cooperatives ensure that the size of the apartment is in proportion to the number of residents. Specifically, the following rule is usually applied: Number of residents + 1.5 = maximum number of rooms Two examples: Couple (2 people): Maximum number of rooms = 2 + 1.5 = 3.5 Family with two children (4 people): Maximum number of rooms = 4 + 1.5 = 5.5 rooms
  • Are there rules regarding income?
    Some cooperatives have a minimum or maximum taxable income. For example, they may cap the allowed taxable income at six times the rent. But this is by no means the case for all of cooperatives. To be on the safe side, it's best to briefly check the cooperative's website before applying. You can quickly find all the rules there. In any case, it is certainly true that people with very high income are less likely to be considered for a cooperative apartment.
  • Do my assets matter?
    Yes, most cooperatives allow a maximum of CHF 200'000. Beyond that it will be quite unlikely that you will be selected for a cooperative apartment.
  • What about pets?
    Various cooperatives tolerate domestic cats. The situation is more difficult with dogs. Only a few cooperatives allow dogs. If you have a dog, the GenossenSchaffen search subscription is probably not that interesting for you, because most of the apartments will not be accessible to you. You can perhaps check the PWG website regularly, because as far as we know, this foundation occasionally accepts dogs.
  • What's the difference between housing cooperatives and apartments owned by the City of Zurich (städtische Wohnungen)?
    Städtische Wohnungen are apartments owned and rented out by the City of Zurich. These are very affordable but there are also strict rules regarding incobe, assets and occupancy (at least at the start of the tenancy). If you are interested in such a flat, you can fill in the application form on the website of the City of Zurich. For the viewings, applicants get chosen at random. You certainly need some luck to get such an apartment. Housing cooperatives are private instituttions that own and rent out properties. The application processes vary and are not at all transparent. Some cooperatives also pick random applicants for the initial viewing. It's very hard to know, what exactly a cooperative is looking for, when a new flat becomes available. It certainly helps to write a good application letter (see our tipps and tricks!).
  • Are there any special cooperatives for large families?
    Yes, these exist! There's Heimgenossenschaft Schweighof for families with at least two children and Stiftung Familienwohnungen for families with at least three children.
  • How can I find a cheap apartment in Zurich?
    That is the million dollar question. The situation on the housing market in Zurich is precarious. We know of the following options: - Cooperative housing - Apartments owned by the City of Zurich - Facebook groups for apartments - Real estate portals such as Homegate and Flatfox sometimes also offer cheap flats - Immomailing (costs CHF 50 once but sometimes it includes more affordable apartments) In general, apartments become a little cheaper if you are willing to live a little further out rather than in the city itself.
  • Where can I find a flat for senior citizens?
    There are several institutions that offer apartments for elderly people. We have listed them in this blog post. Furthermore, we are currently working on a filter for our subscription that will allow you to specifically get notified when an apartment for senior citizens ist listed online. It will take us another 1-2 months to get this feature ready. Come back and check soon!
  • Where can I find a student flat or room?
    You can use platforms like or or to find rooms in flatshares. There are foundations and institutions that specialise in student housing. You can find a list in this blog post.
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