Top 5 Places Where Foreigners Are Renting Apartments in Tokyo: March 2021 Edition

In this post, we present the Top 5 most popular stations for people searching for properties to rent on realestate.co.jp in March 2021. The ranking below is based on an analysis of property listings in the Tokyo 23 Wards that people viewed and inquired about.

#1 Daikanyama

Daikanyama T-site is a very popular bookstore/cafe area that was built on the concept of “a library in the woods.” Photo: Scott Kouchi

The Lowdown: Daikanyama is often called the Brooklyn of Tokyo due to its artsy and stylish vibe. It is beloved by locals as an upscale neighborhood in Shibuya Ward and boasts an assortment of mass-market storefronts vying for attention beside eccentric cafes and boutiques.

Located south of Shibuya Station in Shibuya City, Daikanyama is flanked by other well-known, popular neighborhoods like Naka Meguro, Ebisu, and Hiroo.

Trainline(s): Tokyu Toyoko

Access: From Daikanyama Station

— 20-min to Shinjuku Station (1 transfer)
— 1-min direct to Shibuya Station
— 17-min direct to Meguro Station (1 transfer)

Learn more: Daikanyama Area Guide

See current for rent listings: Daikanyama apartments

#2 Shibuya

Shibuya Cross, photo: iStock

Why Shibuya?

Shibuya is everything to everyone. Every little neighborhood around the station has its own vibe. It runs the gamut from low-cost single-room studios to luxurious seven-bedroom manors. Street food to Michelin-starred gourmet dining. Back alley smoking areas to young, fashionable vape cafes. Mass market department stores to one-of-a-kind designer boutiques. It’s every aspect of Tokyo life distilled into one location.

This is not to mention that the station area is in the midst of a transformation from an entertainment district to a business and skyscraper district.

Shibuya Scramble Square

The Shibuya Scramble Square building (a 47-story skyscraper that opened in November 2019) is the first step in a project that will change the whole look of the neighborhood surrounding Shibuya station. The project encompasses a large area, divided into four districts:

  • Shibuya Station
  • Shibuya Station South
  • Shibuya Sakuragaoka
  • Shibuya Dogenzaka

Each area is slated to have one or more skyscrapers, but the project will focus on the renewal of Shibuya station itself.

The developers’ vision for Shibuya is to make it a futuristic city, a mixture of New York’s Times Square and Silicon Valley. Central to this vision is to turn Shibuya into a business district.

Our featured apartment this month in Shibuya is a spacious 1LDK apartment for rent, 9-min walk from Shibuya Station. Please click on the photo for the full listing and to get in touch with the agent, Housecom. Photo: Housecom

Learn more: Shibuya Area Guide

See current For Rent listings: Shibuya Apartments for Rent

#3 Sangenjaya

This month’s featured apartment for rent in Sangenjaya is a 1R apartment, located just 10-min walk from Sangenjaya Station. No key money, no agency fee. Total monthly cost is ¥98,000 ($894). Please click on the photo to see the full listing and to get in touch with the listing agent, KIMI Information Center. Photo: KIMI Information Center

Why Sangenjaya?

Sangenjaya (sometimes referred to as Sancha) is one of the most popular residential neighborhoods in Setagaya Ward. While Jiyugaoka is known for its European-inspired cafe culture and sweets shops; and Futako-Tamagawa for its modern urban convenienes, Sancha has known for its convenient, laid back residential vibe and thriving local food scene.

The area has a reputation for being quite livable, with a selection of multiple 24 hour supermarkets and for being just two stops from Shibuya Station (one stop if you catch an express train). Sangenjaya is also known by locals as a foodie’s dream town, since there are a lot of independent, local restaurants that have cemented themselves into the community.

Trainline(s): Tokyu Denentoshi, Tokyu Setagaya

Access: From Sangenjaya

— 5- min direct to Shibuya
— 19-min to Shinjuku, with one transfer
— 24-min to Roppongi, with one transfer

Learn more: Sangenjaya Area Guide

See current for rent listings: Sangenjaya apartments

#4 Shirokane Takanawa

Our featured apartment in Shirokane Takanawa is a 1K apartment for rent, 11-min walk from Shirokane Takanawa Station. No deposit, no agency fee. Total monthly cost of ¥95,550 ($871). Please click on the photo to see the full listing and to get in touch with the listing agent, World Clover. Photo: World Clover

Even though there are many upscale neighborhoods in Minato Ward, including Minami AzabuHiroo, and Roppongi, the neighborhood of Shirokane stands out above the rest for its unique charm of incorporating green space with luxurious residential living. There is a serious old money side to Shirokane mixed with influence from the worlds of entertainment and politics. Still, the living here is upscale and subdued, with many designer boutiques and trendy cafes along Meguro-dori and tree-lined Platinum-dori.

A heads up for students, the Shirokane Takanawa campus of Meiji Gakuin University is located near Shirokane Takanawa Station.

Trainline(s): Tokyo Metro Namboku, Toei Mita

Access: From Shirokane Takanawa

— 4-min direct ride to Meguro
— 13-min direct ride to Tokyo Station
— 18-min to Shibuya, with one transfer

Learn more: Shirokane Area Guide

See current for rent listings: Shirokane apartments

#5 Toritsu Daigaku

Our featured rental property in Toritsu Daigaku is a spacious 83-sqm 2LDK house, 9-min walk from Toritsu DaigakuStation. Beautiful 3-story home with high-end fixtures, roof balcony, 3-burner IH stove. Please click on the photo to see the full listing and to get in touch with the listing agent, Tokyo Comfort. Photo: Tokyo Comfort

Toritsu Daigaku is a residential station on the Tokyu Toyoko Line, 9-min direct ride to Shibuya, 16-min ride to Roppongi with one transfer. It is also just one stop to the popular neighborhood of Jiyugaoka.

Jiyugaoka is a trendy, sophisticated neighborhood in Meguro Ward, where you can find more stylish bakeries and sweets shops than you could ever imagine. Located near the southern end of Meguro Ward, closer to Setagaya Ward, Jiyugaoka occupies space that makes it very accessible to downtown Tokyo. Connected to public transportation via the Tokyu Toyoko and Tokyu Oimachi Lines, it’s possible to get to ShibuyaYokohama, and Futako-Tamagawa directly from this station. The calm residential streets are very popular with those seeking a quieter yet stylish side of Tokyo.

Trainline(s): Tokyu Toyoko line

Access: From Toritsu Daigaku

— 1-min direct ride to Jiyugaoka
— 9-min direct ride to Shibuya
— 16-min to Roppongi, with one transfer

See current for rent listings: Toritsu Daigaku apartments


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What documents do you need to rent an apartment in Japan?

Translation of Japanese apartment lease application

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What Japanese real estate agents want foreigners to know about renting an apartment in Japan

Average rent in Tokyo

Japanese Apartment Layout Terms


Lead photo: Shibuya side street, photo by Nayalan Moodley