Famous land swindles in Tokyo

Next month, Netflix is coming out with a fictional series based on 'jimenshi' (地面師), or real estate fraudsters, called Tokyo Swindlers. It looks to be based on some recent high-profile fraud cases that have seen some developers lose billions of Yen to scammers pretending to be selling sought-after plots of land. This is a real risk that we all have to be aware of when operating in Japan's real estate market. While the criminals tend to target domestic investors, I have seen some suspicious cases where foreigners may have also been targeted.Read more

Kumamoto Prefecture lists 18ha of land for 1/38th of its original purchase price

An 18-hectare parcel of undeveloped forest in Kumamoto Prefecture that once had a lofty goal of being a silicon valley-type IT hub is now up for sale for just 12.49 million Yen (approx. US$80,000). This is about 1/38th of what the prefecture had invested into it.

With the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) opening its first of two factories in Kikuyo, a 45 minute drive away, there is optimism that the semiconductor boom could propel the sale.Read more

The hype around Fukuoka

Lately, Fukuoka seems to be a popular topic for foreign institutional investors. We have had several conversations with inbound investors looking to explore opportunities and further understand Fukuoka’s real estate market. 

Some of this new interest may stem from the recent development of several semiconductor plants in Kyushu. There is also a desire to find the next ‘hot spot’ as cap rates in Tokyo, for example, have been squeezed down to a level where foreign funds may find it challenging to make the numbers work.Read more

Kudan-Minami office building traded for 3rd time in 3 years

A 10-story office building across from Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo’s Chiyoda ward has changed hands for the third time in three years. NTT Urban Development acquired Pacific Square Kudan-Minami from a real estate fund in early 2008. It had been suffering from high vacancy rates at the time due to high supply in the neighborhood and a relatively small floor plate (144 m2).Read more

Listed companies sold 568 billion Yen of real estate in 2023

Of the 3,836 companies listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, 94 reported the sale of real estate holdings in 2023. This is down from the record high of 114 companies in 2022.

88 of the 94 companies publicly reported the capital gain/loss on the sale, with the total gain reaching 568 billion Yen (approx. US$3.6 billion), up 27.9% from the previous year and the highest on record.Read more

10,000 sqm property to sell for 2 Yen

A city in Mie Prefecture is preparing to acquire a pharmaceutical company-owned property for just 2 Yen (1 US cent). The property will then be transferred to the sub-tenant free of charge.Read more

Ace Hotel coming to Fukuoka

After opening its first Asian location in Kyoto in 2020, Fukuoka has been selected as Ace Hotel’s second location. The hip Seattle hotelier will take up 8 floors in a mixed-use building under construction in Tenjin.Read more