Buy Apartment or House for Residential Use in Japan

1R/1K studio apartments can range from as little as 12 m² of space (often with a loft) to as much as 30 or 40 m² of space on the more expensive end. On average, a 1R unit in Tokyo and Yokohama is about 16 to 22 , has a 3-piece unit bath, and may have a separate cooking space.

A typical tenant is a student or young professional who has just graduated from school and wants to minimize housing costs to focus on other priorities whether that be a new car, saving for a new home upon marriage, etc.

Buyers of this type of property may be a parent looking to provide housing for an adult child going to school are just starting out in a new career. After the child has moved out, the owner will either become a landlord and rent the property out for generating passive income or sell the property outright.

1DK apartments typically range from 20 m² of space to as much as 30 or 40 m² of space on the more expensive end. On average, a 1DK unit in Tokyo and Yokohama is about 20 m² to 26, has a separate toilet and bath, and a small kitchen. Older 1DK units may have a kitchen large enough for a small dining table, but newly built units will be smaller with no dining space in the kitchen and a larger closet in the living space.

A typical tenant is a student or young professional who has just graduated from school and wants to minimize housing costs to focus on other priorities whether that be a new car, saving for a new home upon marriage, etc.

Buyers of this type of property may be a parent looking to provide housing for an adult child going to school are just starting out in a new career. After the child has moved out, the owner will either become a landlord and rent the property out for generating passive income or sell the property outright. Some buyers may appreciate the location of such a small apartment so much if located near work or a major station that this could become their home for many years before upgrading to a 1LDK or larger unit, often after marriage.

1LDK apartments typically range from 28 m² of space to as much as 60 m² of space on the more expensive end. On average, a 1LDK unit in Tokyo and Yokohama is about 30 m² to 40 m², has a separate toilet and bath, kitchen with a 2-burner or 3-burner stovetop, a separate bedroom with a larger closet, a larger balcony, and a dressing room/washroom with a vanity and space for a washing machine. Older 1LDK units may tatami mats in the bedroom, but newer properties tend to have flooring instead.

A typical tenant is a working professional or a working couple with no children. As more adults in Japan marry later in years or remain single longer, 1LDK units are a bit more popular and can be more expensive even if they have less floor space than a 1DK. This type of unit is also more common in a city center where there is greater demand for easy access to a major train station.

Buyers of this type of property may buy this property as a permanent home until they decide to upgrade to a larger space, find themselves being transferred far away for work, or get married and want more space for a family. The owner may want to rent the property out for generating passive income, but more often than not, will sell the property to raise additional funds to purchase a larger condo close to work or to build a house in the suburbs.

2LDK apartments typically range from 36 m² of space to as much as 80 m² of space on the more expensive end. On average, a 2LDK unit in Tokyo and Yokohama is about 40 m² to 60 m², has a separate toilet and bath, kitchen with a 2-burner or 3-burner stovetop, 1 larger bedroom and 1 smaller bedroom, a larger balcony, and a dressing room/washroom with a vanity and space for a washing machine. Older 2LDK units may tatami mats in both bedrooms, but newer properties tend to have flooring instead. Newly built 2LDK units may have a walk-in closet in the larger "master bedroom" with direct access to the balcony from that bedroom.

2DK units are not as common as a 2LDK unit, and tend to be found in much older buildings. Depending on location and proximity to a station, 2DK units can still be very expensive on a par with newer 2LDK units that are either a little bit farther from from a station or closer to a station where the express train does not stop.

A typical tenant is a working professional or a working couple with no children. Among the immigrant community, 2LDK units are also popular among single working professionals who tend to use the smaller bedroom as a dedicated work/gaming space.

A 2LDK may also be the permanent home for adults who remain single or marry, and will most likely not plan on having any children if the unit is in a city center or near a major station. However, a 2LDK that is located in a suburban area might be cheaper, have more space, and may even have a parking space to accommodate the needs of a small family with 1 or 2 children.

Buyers of this type of property often buy this property as a permanent home until a nursing home becomes necessary, or the need for more space arises through the birth of additional children.

3LDK apartments typically range from 60 m² of space to as much as 100 m² of space or more. On average, a 3LDK unit in Tokyo and Yokohama is about 70 m² to 80 m², has a separate toilet and bath, kitchen with a 3-burner stovetop, 1 larger bedroom and 2 smaller bedrooms, a larger balcony, and a dressing room/washroom with a vanity and space for a washing machine. Older 3LDK units may tatami mats in at least 1 or all 3 bedrooms, while newer properties tend to have flooring instead with at least 1 bedroom having tatami mats. Newly built 3LDK units may have a walk-in closet in the larger "master bedroom" with direct access to the balcony from that bedroom.

3DK units are not as common as a 3LDK unit, and tend to be found in much older buildings. In some cases, a 3DK may be no larger than a 2LDK unit. In many cases, some owners convert their 3DK into a 2LDK when the kids move out or if they want to use the property as an investment property.

A typical tenant is a married couple with children. Although small my western standards, 3LDK units are popular among the foreign community who have kids and need to be close to the city center for accessing work and international schools.

A 3LDK is often a permanent home that offers many more conveniences in terms of access while having the same amount of space or even more space than a newly built house in the suburbs.

Buyers of this type of property often buy this property as a permanent home until a nursing home becomes necessary or the property is sold after being inherited often to cover the cost of inheritance tax.

4LDK apartments typically range from 80 m² of space to as much as 200 m² of space or more. On average, a 4LDK unit in Tokyo and Yokohama is about 80 m² to 130 m², has a separate toilet and bath, kitchen with a 3-burner stovetop, 1 larger bedroom and 3 smaller bedrooms, a larger balcony, and a dressing room/washroom with a large vanity that has two sinks, and a space for a washing machine. The vast majority of older and newer 4LDK units have at least 1 tatami mat room, the other 3 bedrooms have flooring. Newly built 4LDK units may have a walk-in closet in the larger "master bedroom" with direct access to the balcony from that bedroom and maybe some of the other bedrooms as well.

4DK units are not very common and tend to be found in older buildings in more suburban or rural areas. Nowadays, a typical 4DK unit is refurbished and remodeled for renting out as a 3LDK unit.

A typical tenant is a married couple with children (often teenagers) and may be larger enough to accommodate larger furniture from overseas. However, the small bedrooms are typically much smaller with the sole intent of providing a private room for each child. 4LDK units are popular among the foreign community who have kids and need to be close to the city center for accessing work and international schools.

A 4LDK is often a permanent home that offers many more conveniences in terms of access while often having more space and many nice amenities (garage parking, concierge, etc.) compared to a newly built house in the suburbs.

Buyers of this type of property often buy this property as a permanent home until retirement and may sell the condo to finance a larger house in a more rural area closer to greenery, fresh air, the sea, etc.

A single detached house can vary drastically from a traditional Japanese house with a large lot of land in a rural area to a modern, 3-story, narrow/slim design in an urban area surrounded by towering apartment buildings. Space can range anywhere from 50 m² to 300or more. More modern houses will have at least two toilets--one on the first floor and one on the 2nd floor. have a larger system kitchen with 3 burners, 1 larger bedroom and 2 or 3 smaller bedrooms, 1 or 2 balconies, a dressing room/washroom with a large vanity, space for a washing machine, and a large bathroom. Some houses may have tatami mats in 1, 2, or 3 bedrooms, or may have no tatami mats at all.

The biggest cost associated with a house is the land. So depending on the owner's budget, you may have a large lot with a smaller house, or a smaller lot with a larger house that often has 3 floors.

Houses with modern amenities are not readily found at reasonable prices in urban areas. However, once you reach the suburbs or rural areas, there can be some nice houses are more reasonable prices. Only drawback being that commutes will often entail driving to work or taking a bus to reach the nearest station.

Buyers of this type of property may be using the house as a permanent home or as a vacation home.