Top Ten Places Outside Tokyo, for Foreign Homebuyers in Japan – 2021 Ranking

Thank you to everyone who visited us this year on Real Estate Japan!

This was a very interesting year as we all continued to persevere through the ups-and-downs of the pandemic and other world and domestic events. Focusing in on just the real estate market, we had a very good year thanks to your continued support!

Views and inquiries on For Sale properties throughout the country were very strong strong. Most people using Real Estate Japan view and inquire on properties in the Tokyo 23 Wards, but we have seen a trend towards people looking for homes and investment properties outside the capital.

In this post, we share the ten most popular places outside Tokyo, ranked in terms of views and inquiries on For Sale properties. Do any of these places make your short list? Please let us know in the comment section below!

#1 Naniwa Ward, Osaka

In pole position in the 2022 ranking is Naniwa Ward, Osaka!

There are many residential neighborhoods in Naniwa Ward but these more laid back areas enjoy close proximity to several bustling commercial districts, notably Namba Parks, a shopping and office complex, and Den Den Town, (Osaka’s answer to Akihabara in Tokyo), literally “Electric City”. The Shinsekai entertainment district is also in Naniwa Ward.

Major stations in Naniwa Ward include JR Namba station, Ashiharabashi station on the Osaka Loop line, Sakuragawa Station on the Hanshin Namba line, Daikokucho station on the Midosuji and Yotsubashi metro lines, and Ebisucho station on the Sakaisuji and Hankai lines.

Our partner agents on Real Estate Agent list a range of properties for sale in Naniwa, from renovated family-friendly apartments to single-unit investment properties and whole buildings.

Our featured property in Naniwa is this beautifully maintained 55-sqm 1SLDK apartment for sale in an excellent location, just 1-minute walk from JR Namba Station! This property can be purchased for your own use or as an investment. List price ¥42,800,000 ($372,000 USD). Please click on the photo for the full listing and to get in touch with the agent. Image: Kurofune

 

#2 Hachioji, Tokyo

At number is Hachioji, a city located west of the Tokyo 23 Wards. It is a popular choice for people commuting to central Tokyo for work but who want a more relaxed living environment close to nature.

Looking down the street extending from the North Exit of Hachioji Station. Photo: Scott Kouchi

The city itself is surrounded by Mt. Takao and Mt. Jinba but there are many city-life amenities near major stations like Hachioji Station on the JR Chuo line. From this major western Tokyo hub it is about a 44-minute direct ride to Shinjuku.

Please see our Hachioji Area Guide for an in-depth local guide to this very livable Tokyu suburb.

To see what’s currently on the market, please see Properties for Sale in Hachioji.

Our featured property in Hachioji is a 14th-floor 3LDK apartment for sale in the 26-story City Tower Hachioji Fureshia condominium tower. This is a 70-sqm northwest corner unit, with a list price of ¥65,000,000 ($565,000 USD). Currently tenanted with an estimated gross yield of 4.3%. Please click on the photo for the full listing and to get in touch with the agent. This is a privileged and exclusive by Sumitomo Real Estate Sales. Image: Sumitomo Real Estate Sales

#3 Minami Ward, Yokohama

At number three is Minami Ward, Yokohama.

This area of Yokohama is primarily residential but is well-connected to major stations in Yokohama, such as Kannai and Yokohama China Town, as well as Yokohama Station, which is about a 17-min direct ride from Idogaya Station in Minami Ward.

The Keikyu Main lines and Yokohama Blue line also run through Minami Ward, the former giving resident easy access to downtown Tokyo.

To see what’s currently on the market in Minami Ward, please see Properties for Sale in Minami Ward, Yokohama.

Our featured property in Minami Ward, Yokohama is this beautifully renovated 5th-floor corner unit 3LDK apartment for sale in an excellent location near Bandobashi Station on the Yokohama Blue line. Yokohama Stadium, Chinatown, and Minatomirai can be reached on foot or by bicycle. List price is ¥39,900,000 ($347,000 USD). Please click on the photo for the full listing and to contact the agent. Image: SOLID Real Estate

#4 Chuo Ward, Fukuoka

Coming in at number four is Chuo Ward in the city of Fukuoka. The city of Fukuoka is the capital of Fukuoka prefecture and is located on the northern shore of the island of Kyushu.

Tenjin area of Fukuoka, Japan – September 19, 2019 via iStock 1176480135, Credit:Nirad

Chuo Ward, literally “Central Ward” is unsurprisingly located in the city center and anchors some of the busiest commercial and entertainment districts in Fukuoka. Tenjin is the city’s western hub and is known for its eclectic mix of shops, bars, restaurants, and nightlife. The Daimyo district is also located in Chuo. This is area is known for being Fukuoka’s business start-up hub. Here, the Fukuoka Next Building was opened in 2017. It is now home to Fukuoka’s Start-up Cafe and provides office space to a number of start-up businesses.

On Real Estate Japan, our partner agents, primarily Gran Asset Management, a bilingual real estate agency based in Fukuoka, mainly list investment properties but they can also help you find apartments suitable for your own use.

Please see all available properties here: Apartments for sale in Fukuoka.

Spacious, well-maintained 1R apartment for sale in an excellent location near Tenjin Station on the Fukuoka City Subway Kuko line in Chuo Ward, Fukuoka. List price is ¥11,800,000 ($103,000 USD). Currently occupied with an estimated gross yield of 11.5%. Please click on the photo for the full listing and to contact the agent. Image: Gran Asset Management

#5 Yokosuka, Kanagawa

At number five in the rankings is Yokosuka, a city with a population of about 410,000, located in Kanagawa prefecture.

Located across Tokyo Bay from Tokyo and Yokohama, Yokosuka has been an important coastal community for hundreds of years and is now most well-known as being home to a large naval base which hosts both the Japanese fleet and the U.S. 7th Fleet.

Please see all available properties here: Apartments for sale in Yokosuka.

Our featured property in Yokosuka is a spacious 78-sqm 3LDK apartment for sale in an excellent location facing the City Marina Velasis, in Uraga Bay at the entrance to Tokyo Bay. Enjoy gorgeous, unobstructed views of the marina from the living room! Please click on the photo for more photos and full listing and to get in touch with the agent. Image: ReMax Amistad

#6 Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto

At number six is Higashiyama Ward in the city of Kyoto.

Higashiyama (literally “East Mountain”) Ward is best known for the district by the same name, which is located on the lower slopes of the eastern mountains and is one of the city’s best preserved historic districts. The streets in Higashiyama are lined with small shops, cafes and restaurants which have been catering to tourists for hundreds of years.

On Real Estate Japan, our partner agents list a wide variety of properties in Kyoto, from renovated town houses (machiya) to single-family homes and modern apartments. You can also find whole buildings and ryokan (Japanese-style inns) for investment purposes and many renovated properties. Please click here to see all Properties for Sale in Kyoto.

Beautifully renovated 3LDK (3-bedroom) ryokan (Japanese-style inn) for sale in Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto. Very central location near Toufukuji Station on the Keihan Main and Nara lines. Walkable to many popular attractions. List price is ¥128,000,000 ($1.1 million USD). Please click on the photo for the full listing and to contact the agent. Image: Kurofune

#7 Karuizawa, Nagano

At number seven in the annual is a perennial favorite, the lovely mountain resort town of Karuizawa.

Karuizawa is a resort town in the mountains of Nagano prefecture. It is located about 2-hours from Tokyo by shinkansen. Karuizawa is known for mild summers and is a popular weekend getaway destination for Tokyo residents. There are many summer recreational activities in Karuizawa, including hiking and cycling. Skiing and hot springs are popular in the winter.

On Real Estate Japan, many of the properties available for sale in Karuizawa are plots of undeveloped land and resort-style single-family homes. You can find price points from the equivalent of less than $100,000 USD to several million US dollars. Please use the filters on the search page to look for the properties that meet your criteria!

Examples of properties for sale in Karuizawa:

71-sqm 3LDK house for sale on a large 567-sqm lot surrounded by greenery in the Tsurudamari villa area of Karuizawa. List price is ¥18,500,000 ($163,000 USD). Please click on the photo for the full listing and to inquire directly to the agent. Image: Tokyu Resort Corporation

Newly built (September 2020) 4LDK house for sale in the Minami Hara area of Karuizawa. Situated on a spacious 1,045-sqm lot. List price is ¥89,450,000 ($790,000 USD). Please click on the photo for the full listing and to inquire directly to the agent. Image: Tokyu Resort Corporation

See all listings for properties for sale in Karuizawa.

#8 Nago, Okinawa

Nago is a tourist town on Okinawa Island, in southern Japan. It’s known for beach resorts along Nago Bay.

On Real Estate Japan, you can currently find listings for “land only” listings but our partner agents can also help you find properties for sale in Okinawa.

Ocean front, 175-sqm plot of freehold land for sale in Nago, Okinawa. List price is ¥24,900,000 ($217,000 USD), discounted from ¥29,000,000. Please click on the photo to see the full listing and to get in touch with the agent (SOLID Real Estate). Image: SOLID Real Estate

#9 Minami Ashigara, Kanagawa

Minami Ashigara is a city in Kanagawa prefecture. It is located just north of Fuji Hakone Izu National Park and the city of Odawara.

#10 Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto

Kamigyo Ward is best known for being home to the Kyoto Imperial Palace, a complex of classical Japanese halls and gardens, as for nearby Nishijin, a weaving district with traditional wooden houses.

On Real Estate Japan, our partner agents list a wide variety of properties in all areas of Kyoto, from renovated town houses (machiya) to single-family homes and modern apartments and ryokan (Japanese-style inns). Please click here to see all Properties for Sale in Kyoto.

Beautifully renovated 4LDK (4-bedroom) traditional town house for sale in Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto. List price is ¥85,000,000 ($739,000 USD). Please click on the photo to see more photos and the full listing. Image: Arrows International Realty Corp.


Article lead image: Beautifully renovated 3LDK (3-bedroom) ryokan (Japanese-style inn) for sale in Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto. Very central location near Toufukuji Station on the Keihan Main and Nara lines. Walkable to many popular attractions. List price is ¥128,000,000 ($1.1 million USD). Please click here for the full listing and to contact the agent. Image: Kurofune

FAQs About Buying Property in Japan

Can a foreigner buy property in Japan?

Yes. You can buy property in Japan regardless of your nationality or country of origin. There are also no residency requirements for buying real estate in Japan. Securing financing as a resident foreigner is more complicated. For info on financing, please see Basic Requirements for Getting a Mortgage as a Foreigner in Japan

Seminars on Buying Property in Japan

Please see our seminar page for a current list of seminars on: how to buy a home in Japaninvesting in Japanese real estate for beginnershow to apply for permanent residency in Japanhow to sell property in Japan, and much more.

How do I get a property loan as a foreigner in Japan?

Please see this article for information on: Getting a property loan as a foreigner in Japan

What is the process for buying a property in Japan?

Please see our step-by-step guide: Guide to Buying Property in Japan

See how much you can borrow and your monthly payments in yen: Yen Mortgage Loan Calculator

For information about purchase and brokerage fees: Breakdown of real estate purchase fees and taxes in Japan

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