Poorly managed apartment buildings of concern in Tokyo

Apartment buildings do not magically care for themselves. They require the apartment owners to be proactive about ensuring regular maintenance and repairs are carried out. By doing so, a building can last a long time while also helping with the resale values of those apartments. A poorly maintained building can become unpleasant to live in and resale values can plummet.

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Majority of wooden homes built before 2000 need earthquake-retrofitting

According to the Japan Wood-frame House Earthquake Reinforcement Business Cooperative, made up of contractors and architects that provide earthquake-retrofitting services, 93% of the 4,000 homes that have had earthquake-resistance inspections carried out over the past 15 years in Tokyo were at risk of collapse in an earthquake that produced a seismic-intensity (shindo) level of upper 6 or higher (*Note: The seismic intensity scale is difference to magnitude). The average age of a house surveyed by the Cooperative was 37 years.

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80% of sellers/buyers not choosing home inspections

According to a survey carried out by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) in the first half of 2018, only 18% of transactions involved home inspections. 

Between April and September 2018, a total of 5,932 home inspections were carried out across Japan. A total of 12,904 inspections were forecast for the year, almost double the number seen in 2017. Still, this amounts to less than 8% of the 169,000 existing home sales on an annual basis.

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Liquefaction in Sapporo caused by poor soil conditions

The September 2018 Hokkaido Iburi Earthquake resulted in severe liquefaction in part of Sapporo’s Kiyota Ward, leaving roads caved in and homes leaning at dangerous angles.As at October 3, as many as 1,452 homes had suffered damage in Kiyota Ward. This wasn’t the first instance for the neighborhood with liquefaction observed during the 2003 Hokkaido Earthquake which had an epicenter 300 kilometers away. The liquefaction hazard map issued by the city had previously designated this area as being of high risk for liquefaction damage.

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