No rental inflation here. Residents of the Akasaka Public Dormitory for Diet Members are about to see their monthly rent discounted by over 13,000 Yen from next month onwards.

The subsidized housing is provided to members of the Lower House and their families. The current monthly rent of 138,066 Yen (approx. US$1,160) will be reduced to 124,652 Yen from April. The 28-story building contains 300 three-bedroom apartments of around 80 sqm (860 sq.ft) each that would typically rent for 500,000 Yen/month on the open market.

Under the National Public Servant Accommodation Act, the rents charged on government employee housing decrease as a building ages. The Akasaka building has reached the 15-year mark when the first rental decrease sets in.

When residents first moved in back in 2007, the monthly rent was set at 92,000 Yen. The low rent for a prime central Tokyo location drew some criticism, with the government responding by gradually increasing the rent to its current level.

It is also worth mentioning to normal landlords and investors that market rents for non-government housing also tend to decline as a building gets older when compared to brand-new construction. Generally speaking, a 30 or 40-year-old apartment is not going to rent for the same price as an identical brand-new one. However, rents tend to follow market forces and do not follow any particular mathematical equation or set rule. Changing market conditions will also affect future rents.

The Asahi Shimbun, March 17, 2022.
TBS News, March 16, 2022.