What you can rent for $500 or Less a Month in Japan: No Key Money, No Deposit, No Agency Fee

In this installment of the “what can you rent” series, let’s take a virtual tour around Japan to see what you can rent outside Tokyo for about $500 (¥57,000) or less a month. And, of course, no one likes to pay high move-in costs, so the examples below all feature apartments that don’t charge key money, a deposit, and agency fees.

The main takeaway here is that $500 will get you a little bit more space in some cities than others, but in general, you will pay less per sqm for an apartment in Sapporo, Osaka, and Nagoya than in Tokyo. So, for example, you might expect to squeeze yourself into 15-sqm of space for an apartment at this price point in Tokyo, while in regional cities, you’ll get on average 5-sqm (54-sqft) more of space (not to mention fee WiFi, furniture, and even new (2017 or 2018) construction, in some cases!).

Sapporo Apartments for Rent

Furnished studio apartment for rent in Sapporo 

  • Where: Kita Ni Yon Jou Station (6 min-walk) on the Namboku line in Kita Ward.
  • Total Monthly Cost: ¥50,540 ($447)/month
  • Key Money: None
  • Deposit: None
  • Agency Fee: none
  • Size: 23.18 m² (224-sqft)
  • Floor: 2nd floor in 2-story building
  • Notes:  Possible to pay some fees with a credit card (please inquire for details). Sunny, south-facing furnished apartment with loft-style bed. Unlimited Internet for an additional ¥2,268 per month.

Chiba Apartments for Rent

Furnished apartment for rent in Chiba – Room-sharing (2 people) ok!

No key money, no deposit, no agency fee apartment for rent in Chiba. Please click on the photo for the full listing, more photos, and to inquire directly to the agent.

  • Where: Keisei Okubo Station (13 min-walk) on the Keisei Main line, about an hour commute to Tokyo Station.
  • Total Monthly Cost: ¥58,540 ($517)/month
  • Key Money: None
  • Deposit: None
  • Agency Fee: none
  • Size: 21.11 m² (227-sqft)
  • Floor: 2nd floor in 3-story building
  • Notes:  Room sharing (up to 2 people) ok! Built in 2016. Credit card payment for some fees available. A/C installed, furnished, washing machine, toilet separate from bathroom.

Yokosuka Apartments for Rent

Furnished studio apartment for rent in Yokosuka

No key money, no deposit, no agency fee apartment for rent in Yokosuka, Kanagawa. Please click on the photo for the full listing, more photos, and to inquire directly to the agent.

  • Where: Keikyu Nagasawa Station (11 min-walk) on the Keikyu Kurihama line. Yokosuka is perhaps most well-known for being the headquarters of the US Navy’s 7th fleet, and on Real Estate Japan is one of the more popular searches for people looking for apartments in Kanagawa prefecture.
  • Total Monthly Cost: ¥45,500 ($402)/month
  • Key Money: None
  • Deposit: None
  • Agency Fee: none
  • Size: 19.87 m² (214-sqft)
  • Floor: 1st floor in 2-story building
  • Notes:  Lofted bed-style studio apartment. Some fees payable with a credit card. Short-term rental available!

Osaka Apartments for Rent

Brand new studio apartment for rent near Shouji Station – WiFi included in rent!

No key money, no deposit, no agency fee apartment for rent in Osaka. Please click on the photo for the full listing, more photos, and to inquire directly to the agent.

  • Where: Shouji Station (6-min walk) on the Sennichimae subway line.
  • Total Monthly Cost: ¥55,825 ($494)/month
  • Key Money: None
  • Deposit: None
  • Agency Fee: none
  • Size: 21.97 m² (224-sqft)
  • Floor: 2nd floor in 3-story building
  • Notes:  Built in 2018. Big windows, an actual closet (!), A/C installed and WiFi included in rent. Good shopping and restaurants near the station.

Nagoya Apartments for Rent

Furnished studio apartment for rent near Nakajima Stn – 10-min direct ride to Nagoya Station

No key money, no deposit, no agency fee apartment for rent in Nagoya. Please click on the photo for the full listing, more photos, and to inquire directly to the agent.

  • Where: Nakajima Station (9-min walk) and Minami Arako Station (10-min walk) on the Aonami line, about 10-min direct ride to Nagoya Station. Excellent location!
  • Total Monthly Cost: ¥53,040 ($470)/month
  • Key Money: None
  • Deposit: None
  • Agency Fee: none
  • Size: 20.81 m² (224-sqft)
  • Floor: 2nd floor in 3-story building
  • Notes: Bright, clean and functional lofted bed-style studio apartment. A/C, washing machine, fridge and WiFi installed. Short-term is not available.

You may also be interested in: How to avoid hidden costs when renting an apartment in Japan

Top photo: A homemade cat condo via 北欧インテリア