Apartment bubble – Why new apartment prices are rising

Recent news reports have suggested that real estate prices in Japan are set to rise and that a property bubble is imminent. But how true are these reports?

The prices of brand new apartments in Japan’s major capitals has certainly increased (up 3.0% over 12 months in greater Tokyo in March 2013). However, the main reason for the increase in price is not a property bubble, but an increase in construction costs.

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A first for Kansai: Historic bldg facade preserved in redevelopment

Orix Real Estate announced that they will be preserving the facade of a Taisho-era building and will incorporate it into the new condominium being built on the site. The design of the upper floors will also be in keeping with the original building facade. This is the first example of a condominium in the entire Kansai area that preserved the facade of the former building.

Apartment sales in ‘Gran Sanctus Yodoyabashi’ began on July 3rd, with 45 of the 60 units being offered in the first release. Apartments range in size from 56.09 ~ 78.83 sqm (603 ~ 848 sqft) and are priced from 37.6 ~ 56.5 million Yen. The average price per square meter is 693,000 Yen.

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New apartment developments around Tokyo Sky Tree

The area surrounding the new Tokyo Sky Tree in Sumida-ku is seeing more and more new condominiums hit the market. Developers are promoting properties that are within walking distance to, or have views of the new tower.

In July, Sumitomo Corporation began selling apartments in “City House Narihirabashi Station Court” which is just a 4 minute walk to Sky Tree. The price of a 2-bedroom apartment in this building is around 40 million Yen (512,000 USD) which is comparatively higher than surrounding buildings. Although only a portion of the 35 apartments have views of the Sky Tree, most of the apartments offered for sale in the initial sales period have been sold.  Sumitomo’s PR department said that the new retail development around the base of the Sky Tree will add to the convenience of the neighborhood, as will gradual improvements to the surrounding streets. Buyers are anticipating that the neighborhood’s image will improve over time.

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“Proud Minamiazabu” to be built on French Embassy site

The 4000sqm site of the former French Embassy in Minamiazabu 4 Chome is about to be redeveloped into a luxury 7-storey condominium apartment complex.

The developers are Mitsui Fudosan Residential and Nomura Fudosan and the construction company is Takenaka Corporation. Nomura will act as the sales agent. The project is currently called the “French Embassy Site Minamiazabu Project” but the final building name may be “Proud Minamiazabu”, which will be the latest in Nomura’s “Proud Series” of apartments.

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