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Tokyu Housing Lease Co., Ltd., jointly with Diamond Media Co., Ltd. on January 27, surveyed leasing contracts for leased condominiums nationwide in 2019 regarding lump-sum payments (security deposits, key money, and renewal fees) and published the results. Basically, shikikin (敷金) can be thought of as a “security deposit.” Often, the tenant does not get all (or even any) of it back, even if he/she took good care of the property. “Reikin” (礼金, literally “thanks money”) is...

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JapanHouses For Hedgehogs

3 months ago684 min

Now, let’s discuss a new type of Japanese real estate…a house…for hedgehogs! Hedgehogs are becoming increasingly common as pets, especially in Japan. The Japanese word for “hedgehog” is harinezumi (ハリネズミ or 針鼠, literally “needle mouse”), because their bodies are covered in sharp quills. However, when the hedgehog is calm, it’s possible to pet it; it feels like petting a hairbrush with stiff bristles. Hedgehogs love new smells, from cigarettes to turpentine, and will “anoint” themselves...

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Could this be a good time to buy Japanese investments such as Japanese real estate? With a weak yen, your US dollars, Euros (€), etc. will now buy several percent more here than they did just a month or so ago. The yen is considered a “safe haven” currency. How long will this period of cheap yen last? The dollar/yen exchange rate was even weaker on Thursday, the 20th. It rose to 112.23 yen to...

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In Chichibu, there’s a museum called the “Chinsekikan” (珍石館). 珍 (chin)=Rare 石 (seki)=Rock 館 (kan)=Hall They have over 1,700 rocks. Many (though not all) of them resemble human faces, for example, Elvis Presley. Take a look at the following picture (from mapple.net) at the third one on the second row: Some Western news sources claim that the museum only has rocks that resemble human faces. That’s actually not true, although many of them do. For...

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For thousands of years, Mt. Fuji has been free-to-climb. This is about to change. For those who’ve been living under a rock (though obviously not a reddish-orange volcanic rock on Mt. Fuji), Mt. Fuji (also known as “Fujisan,” but NOT “Fujiyama”) is the tallest mountain in Japan, a dormant volcano that last erupted between 1707 and 1708. It stands 3,776.24 meters tall, or for those of you using the imperial system, that’s approximately 12,389.24 feet....

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The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism released the “Land Price LOOK Report” (Q4 2019), which summarizes trends in the land prices of highly-used land in major cities, on the 14th. The survey was conducted in 43 districts in Tokyo, 25 districts in Osaka, 9 districts in Nagoya, and 23 districts for a total of 100 districts (32 residential districts and 68 commercial districts). During the period under review (October 1, 2007-January 1, 2008),...

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Yūsaku Maezawa, the 43-year-old Japanese businessman who’s worth US$2 billion and is known by the Twitter name “yousuck2020,” is offering ¥1 billion (US$9.11 million) to entrepreneurs (not just one entrepreneur, but many of them). He’s the founder of the online retailer ZOZOTOWN, and in addition to that, is famous for writing the most-retweeted post of all time on Twitter (with no qualifiers). He’s a social media master. This time, also on Twitter, he tweeted to...

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Japan Management Center Co., Ltd. announced on December 10 the financial results for the fiscal year ending on December 31, 2019 (consolidated). For that fiscal year (January 1, 2019-December 31, 2020), sales were 43.302 billion yen (up 0.4% year on year), operating income was 2.202 billion yen (down 22.9%), and ordinary income was 2.213 billion yen yen (down 22.5%). Net income of was ¥1.506 billion (down 22.6%). SG & A expenses increased due to increased...

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Over the past ten or so years, toilet smashing has been becoming a serious problem in Tokyo and The Greater Tokyo Area (for example, Saitama, Kanagawa, etc.). Someone, or perhaps multiple offenders, is entering public restrooms and utterly destroying toilets and urinals. How are they doing it? With a sledgehammer? Really strong martial arts skills? It’s a mystery. However, the government has decided to fight back by installing stronger, virtually unbreakable toilets. Maybe the next...

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Often, Japanese wooden houses make news headlines, even in the Western press, for being short-lived; it’s claimed that the lifespan of a Japanese house is about 30 years. The Japanese government considers a wooden house “fully depreciated” after only 22 years (though that’s well-known as an underestimate). However, this is probably because most Japanese homeowners don’t perform the necessary maintenance, repairs, and renovations. According to the Faculty of Engineering at Waseda University, the average Japanese...