Home2019 2019 December

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Housecom Co., Ltd. opened a rental property information site that allows “map search” on December 25. When the map for a desired area is displayed, vacancies are displayed as red house marks. By clicking on the mark, you can check the outline of the property such as rent and floor plan, and it is linked to the details page. It enables flexible searches that are not limited to the conventional rent or how many minutes...

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Japan Airlines, also known as (JAL), is one of the major airline companies in Japan, along with All Nippon Airways (ANA). JAL is planning a special promotion for the summer of 2020, that will finish at the end of September. In it, JAL will give out 100,000 free round-trip airline tickets to foreigners visiting Japan for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The tickets are for domestic side trips so that foreign tourists already in Japan can...

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A startup company called “ADDress” has appeared in the housing market offering “all-you-can-live” housing. What does that mean, exactly? Well, just as “all-you-can-eat” means you pay a set amount and can eat as much as you want, and “all-you-can-drink” will have you tying a necktie around your head and dancing on the tabletops for one set price, with “all-you-can-live,” you pay a set amount per month (¥40,000, which is about $365.76) and can choose from...

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This month, M&G Real Estate (the real estate fund manager for M&G Investments, a UK company that manages 33.5 billion pounds in assets) made a major purchase of Japanese real estate. It bought 12 residential properties, which are currently tenanted at nearly 100%. It bought these buildings in Fukuoka, Kyoto, Osaka, and the nation’s capital, Tokyo. It purchased properties in some of the most expensive parts of each city/metropolis. Prior to this purchase, it already...

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Takahiro Shibata (Twitter username: @iine_piroshiki), a Japanese artist, has created an extremely lifelike sponge cake that looks like a sponge. “When I tried to bake green and yellow sponge cake and stack them on top of each other, I was able to make a sponge that was better than imagined,” he wrote on Twitter. He posted a picture and the aforementioned Tweet at 7:50 PM on December 20, 2019. Here is what his sponge cake...

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Weekend warriors love DIY. You can take out a hammer, nails, and some plywood and make some furniture. You can snake your own drain. You can even order a small, ultralight airplane in kit form and build it in your backyard. When people think of “DIY,” they think of a dad with an inventive streak that hasn’t quite died out, with some tools, working on a project on a Saturday or Sunday. Well, in Japan,...

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Historically there is a strong relationship between the availability of credit from banks (loans) and asset prices. When loans are easy to get and cheap to repay everyone takes advantage of the cheap money to buy assets and make money with investments and expansions in their businesses. When loans are harder to come by and the cost of the loan increases, fewer people are able or willing to take them, and as such asset prices...

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In Hokkaidō, which is the northernmost region of Japan, there is a town called “Niseko,” and recently, investors are flocking to invest in ski resorts there. Niseko is famous for its high-quality powder snow. It is a joy to ski on Niseko snow, yet the prices for ski resort real estate there are actually quite reasonable, at least for now. Niseko ranks only 31st in the world for ski resort land prices. This is according...

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Japanese TV is often sensationalist. Unlike TV in the UK or US which would quickly ‘go viral’ for all the wrong reasons, Japanese TV is shielded from global scrutiny by virtue of the fact that the Japanese language is only used in Japan. Yesterday I saw a news segment focusing on Kyoto. The subject was the effect that the hordes of selfie-stick carrying foreign tourists are having on the local, Kyoto-born residents and how their...

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In the Japanese government, the ruling coalition has decided to grant a tax break to companies that invest in 5G (a new cellular phone and data networking standard). The ruling coalition includes the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and the Komeitō. In order to qualify, a company needs to help develop a 5G base station. They can then declare the expenses on their taxes, and deduct 15% of those expenses from their corporate taxes. Another requirement...