Japan isn't on the list of top destinations Australians dream about buying property in, but that may change. Osaka-based architect Luke Hayward last year completed a home he purchased for a Brisbane couple at a cost of about $5000 per sq m. The couple, in their 50s, had visited Japan every year for the past decade and wanted a base they could use for future visits. Hayward purchased the site, designed a renovation for the double-storey post-war house in the suburb of Ichijoji – about 10 minutes from the centre of town by car – and then oversaw the house's redevelopment.
At 55 sq m, the house with one-bedroom and living area that can be closed off to form a second bedroom, is equivalent to a small apartment, but the small size of Japanese plots combined with the stagnation of prices since Japan's 1980s bubble burst, makes it an affordable market for foreigners willing to renovate, Hayward says. A renovation costs up to about 30 million yen ($356,000) before tax and consultants' fees.
"To think you can come to Japan and pick up something that is pretty run down, but is a home, spend a bit of money to have some quite good work done on it in terms of craftsmanship and end up with a nice outcome, it's pretty exciting," he says.
If you want to read this article in Japanese, please see the following link: