The type of housing

The Ciguë is composed of a wide diversity of types of housing, spread across the city and canton of Geneva. Each accommodation has its particularities and advantages, but in the majority of cases our accommodations are of a communal type: this means that each student occupies an individual room, and shares the kitchen and showers with their flatmates. The number of people per apartment varies between 2 and 15 flatmates.

The criteria

To live at the Ciguë, you must fulfill certain criteria, each of which are important and must be adhered to throughout your stay with the cooperative. In other words, a member of the cooperative who no longer fits the criteria for living in the Ciguë will be asked to leave his or her room to a new person.

  • You must be a student, apprentice or intern with a valid documentation.
  • Prove an income inferior to CHF 3’000.-/month (average calculated on a yearly basis).
  • Be 18 years of age or older.
  • The maximum length of stay at the Ciguë is 5 years.

Less formal but just as determining: as the cooperative is self-managed, it is critical that residents invest in the management of their housing and the cooperative as a whole. Additionally, as accommodations are shared with others, conviviality is a significant characteristic.

Getting a room

How to know which rooms are available ?
Every week, the “permanences d’accueil pour demandeurs de logement”, or office hours for those seeking housing, are held at the Ciguë offices. During these office hours, residents of the Ciguë will provide you with information regarding the cooperative and help you sign up for our mailing list. From that moment, and for the next three months, you will receive an announcement every week indicating the available rooms and the adress, rent, and contact persons for that house.

The Ciguë does not work with waiting lists or reservations to access our accomodations.

How are rooms attributed ?
In cases where a room becomes available in an already existing flatshare, it is the residents of the apartment who choose their new flatmate during an interview that they organise, and which we call “attributions”. At this moment you will be able to visit the room.

On the other hand, when a room becomes available in new accomodations, the attribution committee of the Ciguë, organised by volunteer members of the cooperative, meets and chooses candidates.

What should I do once I’ve been attributed a room ?
Once you have been attributed a room, you must come to the office during our “permanence pour personnes logées”, or resident office hours, in order to sign your contract and receive your keys. Please bring with you the following documents:

  • Proof of identification and residence permit for foreigners.
  • Student card or other proof of study, apprenticeship or internship.
  • Proof of income (pay stub, scholarship, letter of support from parents…).
  • A copy of your “assurance responsabilité civile” or personal liability insurance.
  • 300.- CHF to pay for shares to become a member of the cooperative.
  • 50.- CHF annual dues.
  • The equivalent of 2 months rent as security deposit.

The security deposit, shares, and annual dues must be paid in cash at the signature of your rental contract. It is eventually possible to pay the security deposit by freezing the amount in a bank. The security deposit and shares are returned to you upon your leaving the cooperative, so long as you are up to date on rent payments.

Once registered, we strongly encourage you to dedicate some time to the cooperative, by participating the General Assemblies and different committees according to your interests, and to invest in your accommodations to make your flatshares ever more lively and beautiful. Any an all projects and contributions are welcome. The Ciguë lives by and for its members, each of whom can contribute in whichever way they see fit, making the cooperative one of a kind. For more information on how to get involved in the cooperative, visit the “Participation” section of this website!

Practical information

How long in advance are available accommodations announced ?
The delay for terminating a rental contract at the Ciguë is only one month, so available rooms are generally so in a very short time period (between 6 weeks and a few days). It is thus not advantageous to sign up many months in advance.

How much is rent at the Ciguë ?
Rents range between 150.- CHF and 550.- CHF per room, depending on the size, condition, location, and type of contract we have with owners. The average price of a room at the Ciguë is 350.- CHF.

Are rooms furnished ?
The Ciguë rents its rooms unfurnished. Similarly, if residents wish to have a telephone line or internet connection, they must undertake the necessary steps with suppliers and pay associated bills themselves.

How long can one stay at the Ciguë ?
Our way of working does not allow for renting rooms for very short time periods. The average minimum stay is one semester, and maximum is 5 years.

Where else can I find housing in Geneva ?
The housing shortfall in Geneva is critical. Here are some links where you can find announcements for housing:

If you have any further questions :
For questions relating to your studies, the regulations concerning student status and Swiss law, it is best to contact the CUAE (the University of Geneva student syndicate).

You can also visit the UNIGE website: http://www.unige.ch/dase/bulog/accu…