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Discussion in 'Japan' started by Scoober, Aug 17, 2020.
Time for Ramenman to buy them up before the Chinese investors are allowed back into Japan!
Can't remember the name of the 2nd programme.
Property prices in Japan only go up in certain parts of major cities or other areas becoming popular with overseas investors. Otherwise buying a property in Japan is like buying a car. It starts depreciating the moment you put the key in the door and is worth virtually zero at 30 years old.
My take on buying a cheap ski condo is this.
Say you pay A$12,000 by the time you settle everything. Your ongoing costs will be $6,000 a year at a minimum. If you go every year for two months and stay there that means it's costing you around $100 a night. Over 5 years, if you include the original purchase cost, it's $140 a night. Now, if you have a large family that's probably a worthwhile investment. If you have only one or two people, or you are staying for shorter periods, then the sums are getting quite borderline. Additionally you are tied to one location without the opportunity to explore elsewhere.
As for having it as an AirBnB, who is going to manage it for you when you're not there? And if there's lots of other people in the building doing the same that will affect prices/competition. It's certainly not an investment I'd think wise but who knows?
Haha, I'll never buy them (because I won't use them and running cost can be bigger than capital gain). But, if I were forced to buy one, I would buy the property that I can resell more easily even though it's a a lot more expensive(Minpaku OK means = a lot easier to resell)
I agree. If it can be a good buy, it's only retired people who have children (and grandchildren) who also like to ski in Yuzawa for long periods for at least 5 years. I mean, there are some related taxes and fees that you need to pay only when you buy, and if you resell it after a few - several years, it can be a big cost per year. Considering those related initial costs and some other running costs (maintenance fees, heating and lighting expenses, buying some furniture, hiring interpreter, etc), it can be 600,000 Yen or even more per year. If you spend 600,000 Yen per year, you can make each of your ski travel a lot nicer, and you can ski in many different regions, not only around Yuzawa. If they really want to ski for 80 days (or more) per year in Yuzawa at least for 5 years? (I doubt it a bit)
Speaking of Airbnb, those Minpaku okay (Airbnb okay) apartments manage the rooms on behalf of you. So, owners don't need to be in Japan. Of course, it costs (it can be another fee). There were many unused rooms but now all were sold out. So, it was good for the people who already had rooms there before Airbnb(in that more people pay maintenance fees and they can resell the rooms a lot easier), but it doesn't mean it's really good for the people who invest now for Airbnb.
I think I keep saying I'm not showing real estates for capital gain and owning a ski lodge is not for capital gain for me, so it's not for me to buy those apartments, expecting the prices will go up because of Chinese tourists. My stance is like, "I have 30 - 50 million Yen cash and I can lose 10 million Yen for my best hobby = ski". That's why I only pick up cheap ones here = low risk low return. If you expect capital gain, it can be a high risk high return investment. I don't want to recommend a high risk investment to anyone here.
Ive moved on from the idea, was exciting to imagine for a day or 2 over a couple of drinks..
A bit more about my basic stance,
I'm showing ski lodges which are less than 20 million Yen (20 million Yen lodge you don't to renovate at all or 10 million Yen lodge that you might need 10 million Yen to renovate ) and the lodges which you are likely to be able to resell at 50%+ price you buy after 15 years. It doesn't mean you'll lose 10 million Yen. You'll use the lodge, your family and friends will also use it + you'll get some minimum income from a small lodge business. So, your loss is 7 million Yen at the maximum (if your lodge is 20 million Yen = the lodge you can use for a small lodge business). If 7 million Yen loss is too big, you can buy 10 million Yen lodge but 10 million Yen lodge is usually family use lodge (You, your family and your friends will use it and you might get some income from a very small lodge business, and you can resell it at 50% of the price, then your loss is less than 3 million Yen, I guess).
Around me, I often see 20 million Yen lodges are owned by 3 ski mates. 7 million Yen loss / 3 people = 2 million+ Yen loss per person. For average adult people, 2 million Yen for their best hobby is not a big loss in my opinion. It's my basic stance.
this really would be the best alternative for me. i have a hard time skiing at just one place..... gotta ramble!
What fees? 1st result for Yuzawa says no fees:
Naturally I wouldn't take this as gospel...
Which begs a Japan noob question from me (sorry if addressed elsewhere): As an Aussie, If you buy a property in Japow and live there without working, do you have to leave the country every 90 days (and naturally re-enter soon after)?
As I understand it you can only spend a max of 180 days out of a year (365 days) in country without a residence visa (2x90), expect some questions when you return for the 2nd of those though. After a year or 2 I would expect immigration to take an interest in you at some stage too as the 90 days is effectively for tourism.
I have heard of people doing this for 10 years and running businesses before there was an issue. I was surprised.
By the way, marrying a Japanese person makes everything a lot easier. Almost all Japanese people use the messenger app "Line", so before your next ski trip to Japan, you should install Line(just kidding)
By the way, it is difficult to find & hire working holiday visa people?. In recent years, we see more foreigners working at ski resorts in Tohoku. For young people in Japan with working holiday visa and ski lodge owners, it's win - win if they also like skiing. They can stay in ski resort villages for free while you can hire them around minimum wage.
For UK citizens (pretty sure it's the same for Aus) you get stamped with 90 days stay on arrival - this can be extended to 180 days w/o leaving the country.
I've extended the 90 days of the tourist visa to 180 before - had to go to the immigration office (or possibly city hall?) and fill out an application which then took a couple of weeks to process. I was waiting on a "certificate of eligibility" from my prospective employer at the time, didn't want to admit that as not supposed to be job hunting on a tourist visa in the first place - so I made up some nonsense about wanting to see more of the country, blah blah. Extension came through with no probs, not sure if it is ever denied w/o good reason.
I know someone who comes back and forth constantly on tourist entry (or at least did until Corona). Don't think that in itself has ever caused them a problem.
Here is another Niseko's cheap lodge. This lodge is only 10 min drive to the nearest ski slope of Niseko United. It's only 12.6 million Yen. If I were you, I would stay there for a month every year and lend it to two or three other couples who like to stay for a month or so. One month = 0.3 million Yen, then I assume a lot of couples want to stay there if considering the price (one couple = 0.3 million Yen means only 5,000 Yen per person per day, if it's a couple with 2 kids, only 2,500 Yen per person per day).
That will be an error on that site. Most are showing no fees, Getting a good big bath to soak in and have a chat to felllow owners would be a big plus and looking at the different buildings some have one, some don't, some have free parking, some don't, without much difference in the monthly fees,
Go for a cheap weekend in South Korea?
One of these in 4WD with a webasto heater and snow tyres provides a depreciating home with annual fees (tax, rego, insurance) for 2 million yen and up - and not much smaller than some of the smaller apartments with the benefit that it is a mobile depreciating asset that can be sold or shipped home to Australia when trips to Japan stop or aren't going to happen for a few years. The use of space is really good, keeping it compact.
I feel like investigating what it takes to get a business visa for a nominal business so I can own one in Japan and make a friend there with a shed to park it and let them use it when I'm not there with my family or ski buddies (only those who are willing to tolerate my sometimes snoring person in close quarters).
Have you watched any of the Car Danchi stuff? If not, you should.
Not everything gets easier!
Tazawako is a potential ski resort but 0 or only a few lodges owned by English speaking people that offer great sidecountry / backcountry tours to English speaking foreigners. If you become one of the first lodges, you might be able to earn some. "Basically", there aren't ski-in ski-out lodges there, so 5 min drive is a good location. This 27 year old lodge is only 5 million Yen (it's about 5 min drive).
Tazawako related videos
The link of the real estate agency that has the 5 million Yen lodge
But 100,000 yen... (about $1200 AUD) and you get free parking... and it's about 1km from the piste! Can't help but be excited:
fees might be triple that but...
20 - 30 min drive to the nearest ski slope of Niseko United. Deep in forest (600m away from the nearest public road). Good condition. 6.5 million Yen.
600m private road only for several lodges in cluding the 6.5 million Yen lodge.
The link : https://www.nisekocountry.com/detailtatemono87.html
You'd need to be adventurous to live there!
No mains water, no snow clearing!
Oh a technical question, don't worry if too difficult to explain, but what are the implications of "未登記"? I heard that if you have a building enclosed by walls, you are obliged to register, but if your house has never been registered, can it cause you problems later?
The land area is huuuuuuuge! Probably hard to do anything with it though. 16,500 sq/m in total.
Haha, that's why 6.5 million Yen, very cheap = there are reasons. As the website says, the family who've been living next door all year around are using a snowmobile during winter!. Speaking of water, there is 1000L water tank you can use in winter too, but I wonder how the people living next door carry water in winter?. By a snowmobile?. Snow = water source?
Speaking of 未登記, You can register after you buy it if you want. Considering the price of real estates, register fee itself is not expensive at all. About 未登記 : https://www.ie-miru.jp/articles/221
It looks like Ruyoo Lodge is still on the market at a heavily reduced price of ¥45,000,000 (approx AUD600,000)
I think the sales campaign started at around the ¥130,000,000 mark.
I can't remember seeing this page before http://ryuooskilodge.com/priced-to-sell/ it has more details and some video of the interior and includes estimated outgoings which look like being around 3,355,000 yen (AUD43,000)
Electricity-approx. ¥200,000/year (supplied by Chubu Electric Company)
Public water-approx. ¥25,000/year (supplied by town)
Sewage water-approx. ¥160,000/year (maintained Ryuoo Association)
Gas: LPG supplied by local suppliers
Internet-NTT “Hikari” available
Heating by kerosene-Have 20,000 L tank at underground. The cost depends on the capacity of hotel, But assumed approx. ¥1,800,000 in case of full capacity.
Have to join Ryuoo Resort Association and need the members’ full-agreement (not necessary if purchasing the property for use as a holiday home). Entry fee to join the association- ¥2~5M (A chance this could be ¥2m or even zero if introduced by the correct person at Ryuoo which we can try and assist with).
Annual fee of Association is ¥50,000~70,000
Initial purchase property tax approx. ¥2.5M payable 4-6months later
Annual property tax: approx. ¥800,000
Need a hotel license approved by local Fire Dept./Health Dept. approx.. ¥300,000
Private road charges ¥20,000~30,000/year
By the way, Shiga Kogen is popular among skiers from Australia, etc too. Yamanouchi village has Ryuo, Snow Monkey Park, and several more small ski resorts and it's relatively close to Nozawa Onsen, Madarao, etc. Are there lodges that owned by English speaking foreigners there?. If not very close to Shiga Kogen, there are some cheap lodges and houses around Ryuo.
Good luck with that .... even at the reduced price , if you had 100% occupancy over a 10 week season and didn't spend a cent on reno's , you are going to struggle . Not to mention working your butt off .
There are also a lot of other considerations with that property .
Hospitality is a niche industry best suited to people , people with an eye to detail with problem solving skills .
There is an old saying
How do you make a million dollars in hospitality ?
Start with 2 million !!!!!
He may or may not have bought that property with dreams of flipping it for a good profit but my gut feeling is he still would've paid a fair bit less than that.
Nozawaman is correct in his advice. If you picked it up for around ¥25-30m you might do alright with the right marketing and hard work. Unless the buyer is a rich bloke who just wants it as a bit of a hobby.
I fear this season and the repercussions beyond might break a few recent over-ambitious Japan lodge buyers.
Indeed, hopefully it weeds out some of the less professional operators too that have been at it a few years. There are one or 2 in Hakuba which would add real value by leaving.
I agree 100%.
I posted as it was interesting to note the decline in the asking price and the additional infomation inparticular the outgoings especially in light of the earlier posts around cheap properties but signicant annual costs.
In this case $43k of fixed outgoings before even considering operational expenses is a fairly signicant starting point.
By the way, "DIY renovation and skiing", if you love both, you can buy an abandoned house at "nearly" 0 Yen in a ski resort inaka village. Ski resorts are basically in very inaka villages and the lands are cheap. It can cost 2 million Yen to demolish an average Japanese wood house. 2.5 million Yen inaka land but it can cost 2 million Yen to demolish. Then, almost nobody is trying to demolish the abandoned house to sell the land (because nobody might buy the land after demolishing the house). So, abandoned house + land can be nearly 0 Yen = cheaper than the land itself. Don't get me wrong, I'm not recommending it. I just know some people love both DIY renovation and skiing and I thought a few people here might find it interesting.
Happens in all the ski villages. People come in with rose coloured glasses and then proceed to try and bend everything to their will. While I do not like seeing businesses go to the wall there are probably 2-3 I know where I'd likely feel just a little schadenfreude.
2 years ago (IIRC), a Japanese traditional store house (called Kura) was renovated to open as a guest house in Morioka city. Morioka is often used as northern Iwate's ski base. I feel more skiers from abroad (especially advanced people) have started coming to northern Tohoku but there aren't any lodges targeting them (at least, I don't know any of them). In that sense, ski business targeting advanced skiers from abroad is not oversupply here yet. By the way, if you are interested in talking with some Japanese people, I recommend the guest house. People who like to talk with new people tend to gather at those guest houses and they are talking, cooking, eating, drinking, etc together. According to their blog, it seems they have some guests from Australia last season. Here is the link : https://bokunohosomichi.fun/2019to2020oftototo/ (They are Australian family)
It would be nice if there are similar lodges closer to ski slopes.
I thought one of the reasons for not demolishing old properties was that the fixed assets tax was higher for just land than land with a building on it. Would love more information on this.
This guy seems to be discussing the same things as some of us in this thread:
Specifically 'don't buy' recommendations for Yuzawa:
Yuzawa has 20% of Japan's ski resort condos (about 15,000 units from memory), which is the main reason they're so cheap
Naeba is the 6th most visited resort for gaijin, behind Niseko, Hakuba, Furano, Nozawa and Myoko
The one-off taxes can double the cost of the property, ongoing land taxes pretty cheap
Exit strategy perhaps the biggest risk
A couple of other useful websites referred to in the videos.
Edit: A real depth of information on Yamamoto's channel
Both are the reasons. Unused land = higher fixed assets tax. If you can resell the land, reselling it the best. But if it is unlikely that someone buys the land, keeping your house abandoned is better for the lower fixed assets tax and demolition cost. But seen from the people buying the abandoned house + the land, it isn't important because they will use both of the land and the house.
How complicated are the permissions required for a substantial alteration, extension or rebuild?
If you buy a normal / average wood house, you don't need any permissions for renovation unless the size of the house gets bigger. Normal / average wood house in this case = 2 storied, the height is 13 meters or less, gross floor area is 500 square meters or less. If you are seriously interested in, I'll check further.
No need to chase it down for me. Was just a vague "I wonder..." type question in case you knew the answer.
Ha. You have opened Pandora's box.
Finding the rules can be one of the issues in Japan. We have a neighbour who plans to demolish and rebuild. One of the things holding them up is finding out what they are allowed to do. They have plans drawn, have consulted with lots of people but cannot find out definitively if what they want to build is allowed. To us it seems very strange that there is not a well known process fr approvals. They are being told build and see what happens. And this is a big project. Over 30 apartments I think.
This is an example video. As my recognition, this kind of DIY renovation doesn't need a permission (2 storied wood house, less than 13 meters high, less than 500 square meters, and the renovation doesn't enlarge the gross floor area). They are renovating a 50 year old abandoned lodge. Those abandoned houses / lodges in rural villages are suuuuuuuper cheap (ski resort villages = rural villages)