japan real estate

japan real estate 87% of Japan’s home sales are new homes (compared with only 11-34% in Western countries) This puts the total number of new houses built in Japan on par with the US despite having only a thirjapan real estated of the population This begs the question: why don’t the Japanese value their old homesKumagai House / Hiroshi Kuno + Associates Image Courtesy of Hiroshi Kuno + Asshan maintain or upgrade them most are simply torn downHouse of Awa-cho / Container Design Image Eiji TomitaDepreciation is also a holdover from the collapse of Japan’s economic bubble in the late 1980’s Then the ballooning price of land shot up so rapidly buildings were considered temporary installations This perception persists today propped-up in part by policjapan real estateies that artificially sustain land prices despite years of economic stagnancy and population declineThe quality of today’s typical homes – most of which are – has greatly improved but the earlier mindset remains entrenched as market logic Depreciajapan real estatetion is the mantra of housing appraisers Yet there’s no material reason why if properly maintained or improved these homes couldn’t provide shelter in perpetuity like in the West where reselling and moving homes several times throughout one’s lifetime is commonplaceHouse N / Sou Fujimoto Image Iwan BaanJapan’s army of loyal salarymen enjoy secure jobs for life and rarely mjapan real estateove to relocate to a new job Although this is starting to change a stable salaried job is still a prerequisite for a mortgage which borrowers slowly repay in full over the course of their careers Selling up – much less profiting from the resale – is out of the question since no one wants to buy a pre-owned home As the salaryman dutifully slaves away to pay off the mortgage his or her property’s value is all the while depreciating eventually leaving only the value of the land (minus the cost of demolishing the house) In other words negative equity is the norm Grinding economic and consequently geographic immobility is an entrenched reality for most Japanese hojapan real estatemeownersCompared with other developed economies where mainly the wealthy hire architects many more young Japanese first-time homeowners buy land and hire an architect to build their new home perhaps because – for all the economic reasons just discussed – they’re resigned to living in it for the restjapan real estate of their livesSo how do Japan’s bizarre real estate economics influence its architecture Clients need not contemplate what a potential buyer will think 8-10 years into the future This gives them and their architects greater personal freedomWithout property values to safeguard Japan generally lacks planning scrutiny or incentives to protect and preserve local character Neighbors are largely powerless to object on aesthetic grounds to what gets built next door This is a boon to architectsjapan real estate’ creative license but it also reduces the collective incentive to maintain and beautify communities by say nurturing greenery or burying overhead power linesThe freedom to build homes that are a highly personal expression of lifestyle taste and aspiration makes Japan a fertile environment for architects and their clients to test the limits of residential designHouse in Kohoku / Torafu Image Daici AnoFor architects it also helps that civil lawsuits are rajapan real estatere Unlike their litigation-wary European and American counterparts Japanese architects rarely fear claims of negligence emboldening them to take greater risksJapan’s younger architectural clientele may be more open to risk-taking at the behest of their architect for whom each project presents an opportunity to test new and innovative ideas Perhaps there’s also a measure of youthful naveté as to the longjapan real estate-term consequences of design decisions that they as end users will have to tolerate for the rest of their livesHouse in Hiro / Suppose Design Office Image Toshiyuki YanoIt may seem sad that Japanese families slave scrimp and save to build a home only to see their investment rapidly vanish over the ensuing 15 years In this light some of the avant garde houses seem like fatalistic last hjapan real estateurrahs – follies to the futility of home ownership in Japan Resigned to their predicament but needing somewhere to live and raise a family it’s little wonder that Japanese clients reclaim control and quietly rebel in the best way they can – throughjapan real estate designBesides… they’ll eventually tear it all down anywayLibrary House / Shinichi Ogawa & Associates Image Courtesy of Shinichi Ogawa & AssociatesAlastair Townsend ()is co-founder of He also writes about architecture and housing in Japan at He was the former editor of the website (Japan Architecture+Urbanism) and editor of From securities and trusts, we are able to hanhttp://invest-tokyo.com/