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House And Lot For Sale Japan
There are more than 8 million empty houses in rural Japan, and local governments are selling them for less than $500 in an effort to attract residents.
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This vacant property in Tochigi, a prefecture north of Tokyo, is one of 8 million empty homes that need occupants. Tochigi Akiya
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There are millions of empty houses in Japan and some houses are being offered for free.
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To find occupants for the millions of “akiya” or unoccupied houses, the Japanese government attracts potential homeowners with financial incentives such as free real estate and subsidies for major repairs.
The Japan Housing and Land Survey, conducted every five years, recorded a record 8.49 million akiya in Japan in 2018. Many of these homes were left empty after relatives died or when people moved out. A 2018 survey found the number of Akiya increased 3.2% compared to 2013.
Property manager opens empty antique Japanese house in Kamakura outside Tokyo Thomas Peter/Reuters
The report also found that 13.6 percent of Japan’s 62.42 million homes were unoccupied. This was especially visible in Wakayama, Tokushima, Kagoshima and Kochi prefectures, which all recorded home vacancy rates of more than 18%.
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Revitalizing Japan’s rural areas is an important part of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s socio-economic plans for the country. Suga made rural revival a cornerstone of his policy when he took office in September, and promised in a speech in November to boost the rural economy by increasing tourism and pushing reforms.
Cities such as Tochigi and Nagano have “akiya banks”. These sites, created by city or town governments, contain lists of abandoned houses. Some of them sell for as little as 50,000 yen ($455).
The city of Okutama, west of Tokyo, is even handing over old and empty buildings for free, according to Nikkei. Some newcomers found creative ways to redesign it by turning it into workshops and restaurants.
“This program not only helps elderly owners who have difficulty accessing real estate and paying taxes, but also helps the city by reducing the number of abandoned buildings that could collapse or pose a risk in the future.” The government office told Nikkei.
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Some provincial governments are realizing that providing cash is one of the best ways to attract remote workers.
Nikkei reports that Mikasa in northern Hokkaido prefecture saw an 11% drop in the number of vacant homes as the city rolled out subsidies for child care and home purchases. Likewise, the city of Daisen in Tottori Prefecture saw a 7.9% drop in the number of vacant properties as the local government provided aid of 2 million yen ($18,229) to some home renovations listed in its database.
In September, Nikkei reported on a program in which remote workers who had jobs in Tokyo while working in rural areas would receive 1 million yen ($9,114) in cash. Meanwhile, those setting up IT businesses in rural Japan can apply for grants of 3 million yen ($27,343).
The southern Italian city of Cinquefrondi has started selling houses for អឺ 1 in a bid to move. Andreas Solaro/AFP via Getty Images
Jozai Kisarazu Shi Chiba, Kisarazu Shi, Chiba, Japan
As Taylor Borden and Libertina Brandt recently reported, cities and towns across the United States are offering thousands of dollars – and in some cases, empty land – for relocation.
In Italy, the southern region of Cinquefrondi made headlines when they started selling houses for អឺ 1 ($1.14) to increase the city’s population. And the northern Italian town of Locana is offering a similar but sweeter deal, offering remote workers with children a 9,000 euro ($10,971) incentive to move there to make ends meet.
Watch: A drone captures how a volcanic eruption and hundreds of earthquakes destroyed parts of Congo, Western media, the story of Japan’s population crisis and the terrifying ghost towns that remained a decade ago. Recently, they have focused on abandoned properties for repossession. Headlines like Japan give away 8 million abandoned houses – here’s how to get a house and want a free country house in Japan? Giving it away for free might make some people wonder, but is there a real claim?
Yes, there are houses in Japan listed for $500 – there are actually a lot of them. But what the article doesn’t show is $500.
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Here is an example of an abandoned house listed for sale for 5 円 円 (approximately $360 at the time of writing). To say that 6DK at Yonezawa-shi Yamagata needs some TLC would be a stretch!
From the photos, you can see mold, extensive water damage, a leaking ceiling, and a disaster in the kitchen.
So, even though you may have a house for only $500, it will actually cost you thousands of dollars more to make it livable.
Here’s an example: 3DK bungalow of 60 m2 (that is, 3 rooms with a shared dining room/kitchen) in the quiet Motosaru beach area in Oita prefecture. It was built in the 1980s and is located about an hour by bus to the nearest train station in Saiki and a few kilometers from the nearest convenience store or supermarket so a car is required here – but unfortunately there is no parking on the property itself.
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The listing says that all of this can be yours for just ¥800,000 – that’s just $5,800 at current exchange rates. As is often the case with this type of property, the home still has many of the former tenant’s assets for which you are responsible. The site also notes that it may require “minor repairs.”
If you thought it was just vandalism, this site called zero.estate is completely dedicated to ¥0 real estate! One example is a house near Sawame Station in remote Akita prefecture, with about 65m2 on the second floor where you can see the Sea of Japan on a clear day. The ad explains that it once belonged to the deceased owner’s parents, and although most of their property was destroyed, it contained remnants of furniture. The structure itself needed a bit of work: there was a leak and the living room had a tiled floor. Toilet facilities are outdated, although the bathroom is usable, this is worth noting as the previous tenant had the boiler and plumbing repaired. The only thing to keep in mind is the property tax itself: around ¥500k for land, ¥800k for a building (a total of around $9k at current exchange rates) as well as a negligible annual tax of ¥12k or around $100. .
The number of abandoned houses in Japan, called Akiya, is less than 9 million, according to the government’s most recent land use survey in 2019, and the number will more than double in the next decade. This means it is increasingly common to traverse real estate just for the money.
Unless you’re a DIY enthusiast prepared to spend your time, money, and energy dealing with the hardships and hardships associated with neglecting an old house, I personally don’t recommend buying the “cheapest” Japanese house.
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The issues can be numerous and do not need to be raised in an independent building survey. For starters, it’s likely that the property doesn’t meet current earthquake protection standards, and often the beautiful wooden frame of a log home falls to the scorpions. It is these structural problems that are the most difficult and most expensive to repair. For low-income Japanese buyers, looking for local help in the countryside (most of which own this type of house) can also represent too much work.
This is a tour of an akiya youtuber purchased for ¥1. Since the toilet and bathroom were newly installed, he noted that the walls and ceiling needed to be replaced due to a leaking roof:
In fact, I would consider any used home on the market in Japan at a price that seems “too good to be true” with the same skepticism and be prepared to survey it thoroughly and within budget. Some extras are available in case of surprises (see my article on what to do
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