Recent changes to property registration law and the impact on foreign buyers

Starting April 1, some major rule changes were made to the Real Property Registration Act that affect how foreign individuals and corporations register their details when acquiring real estate. One of those rule changes suggested that offshore owners would require a local contact to be recorded on the property title - but reading into the fine print provides a different, and less worrying procedure.Read more

Japan's 40-year history of rent control

Did you know that Japan had 40-year history of strict rent control? There was a nationwide regulation called the Rent Control Act, implemented in 1939, 1940 and 1946. Under this Act, landlords could only charge rents that were within the limits set by the government. They couldn’t raise rents without obtaining government approval.Read more

Rare ruling sees leaseholders responsible for paying land taxes

In a rare court ruling, some leaseholders in a city in Toyama Prefecture are now on the hook for paying land taxes.Read more

Vacant and poorly maintained homes may soon lose property tax breaks

In an effort to disincentivize the owners of abandoned homes from allowing them to rot and decay further, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) is firming up plans that would see property tax breaks removed for homes that meet certain criteria.

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Whole-building investor sues lender

Another cautionary tale from the whole-building investment scandal that had been targeting novice real estate investors for over a decade. This time, a Fukuoka-based news channel interviewed a government worker that just filed a 290 million Yen (US$2 million) lawsuit against the bank at the center of the scandal.

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Land use restriction act to go into effect this September

On July 14, the government announced the basic proposal for a law aimed at restricting acquisitions of land in and near facilities of importance to national security.

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Buying property in an Urbanization Control Area

If you are looking at purchasing property in the outskirts of cities, you may come across land that is in an Urbanization Control Area. This land comes with a very different set of building limitations than other classifications. Here’s why you need to pay careful attention to this difference.

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