Hong Kong equity firm to invest up to US$8 billion in Japanese real estate, tenants face new screening criteria, minpaku operator closes down, and a major landlord sees occupancy rates fall further. Below is a quick weekly summary of some of the recent goings-on in the Japanese real estate market.
According to the Real Estate Economic Institute, the supply of brand-new apartments released for sale across greater Tokyo in August dropped 8.2% from last year to 1,669 units. This time last year saw the release of several hundred apartments in the Harumi Flag Athlete’s Village conversion project on Tokyo Bay.
The median discount on an existing apartment sold in Tokyo’s 23 wards in August was 1.46%, up 0.06 points from July but showing no change from August 2019. Buying activity continued to improve again in August, with transactions looking similar to the volume seen last year.
Transactions and prices of second-hand apartments in greater Tokyo continue to improve as buyers return to the market. Monthly transactions in July were down just 2.4% from last year, ending a four-month run of double-digit declines. A total of 3,156 second-hand apartments were reported to have sold.
The number of brand-new apartments released for sale across greater Tokyo in July increased by 7.8% from last year, according to the Real Estate Economic Institute. This is the first year-on-year increase in 11 months. After several months of intentionally limiting supply, and with the summer bonus season upon us, developers decided to release more apartments onto the market.
On August 21, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) released the quarterly LOOK Report showing changes in land prices in Japan’s major cities. With July 1 as the survey point, this is the second look at land values since the pandemic began.
How long were apartments sitting on the market and how much of a discount did they trade at? The below is summarized from a recent report provided by Tokyo Kantei that looks into any impacts that the coronavirus pandemic may have had on Japan’s residential real estate market in the first half of 2020.
A new rental support payment was rolled out on July 14, allowing small-to-mid-sized businesses and sole proprietors to receive up to 2/3rds of their monthly store or office rent for six months, capping out at 6 million Yen for businesses and 3 million Yen for individuals. As of July 30, 170,000 applications had been made.
The wait has been too long for some restaurants, with customer levels not returning to normal after the state of emergency was lifted on May 25. Many had hoped that diners would return in June, but a second wave of the pandemic starting in July may deal a final blow for many. Late summer and autumn could see a spate of restaurant closures.