According to the Real Estate Economic Institute, the average price of a brand new apartment in greater Tokyo was 49,290,000 Yen in 2013, up 8.6% from the year before and higher than the average of 47,750,000 Yen seen during the ‘mini bubble’ in 2008. Sales of apartments priced over 100 million Yen have also increased, as has investment from domestic and foreign funds.
Apartment rent, however, has not shown the same trajectory. According to Tokyo Kantei, the average monthly rent of a family-sized apartment less than 5 years old in Tokyo’s 23 wards was 4,007 Yen/sqm in June 2014, up 9.2% from the previous year. For apartments between 6 ~ 10 years old, the average monthly rent was 3,461 Yen/sqm, showing almost no change from 12 months prior. For apartments aged between 21 ~ 30 years old, average rents dropped by 2.6% to 2,496 Yen/sqm, while rents for apartments over 30 years old had fallen by 0.5% to 2,616 Yen/sqm. Masayuki Takabashi, a researcher from Tokyo Kantei, said that the recent increase in the consumption tax rate has reduced the real income of consumers, which has made conditions difficult for landlords who want to achieve strong rental returns.
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