February and March are the busiest months in the real estate industry in Japan. In the Tokyo metropolitan area, approximately 30 ~ 50% more sales occur in March than in April.
In April, fresh graduates will be starting at their new jobs, while schools will be starting their new year. This means many families and young workers who are moving will be keen to be settled in their new home before the end of March. If you are an investor and looking to buy a property to rent out to tenants, now is the peak moving season for tenants, so closing on a property by March is ideal.
If you are looking for a property for your own use, you may be up against more competition over the next two months, and may find that your preferred properties are snapped up.
The market for property sales in Tokyo has been heating up since early 2013, and transactions and prices have been steadily climbing. Reported sales of second-hand apartments in central Tokyo’s 3 wards were up 9.7% in 2015 from the year before. It is not uncommon for a well-priced property in a prime location to sell within days or weeks of listing, and for a seller to have several offers to consider. Adding a seller’s market into the mix means that buyers are going to be up against some strong competition for the next couple of months.
For those looking to buy you will need to be prepared to act quickly in order to secure the property of your choice. Act too slow and you may miss out on your 1st, 2nd and 3rd preference.
The keys to getting the property of your choice:
1] Understand the current market
What is demand and supply like? Is is a seller’s market or a buyer’s market? How long are properties typically listed before selling?