So what sort of rates can you be expecting to pay for rent in Tokyo and what sort of apartments are available?
Prices depends on which part of Tokyo you are looking at, size of apartment, distance from the nearest train station, how much daylight an apartment receives, which way the apartment is facing, whether the apartment is on the 2nd floor or higher etc etc.
This site will give you the average prices of rent in Tokyo which you can sort by area. A one room apartment in Minato-ku can cost 140,000 yen per month - or the lowest for a decent location in Chofu at 60,000 yen per month. Any lower than that and you are going to end up in the sticks or with a battered up apartment - or are very lucky.
If you want a decent sized apartment for 2 then you will want a 2LDK - the "2" is the number of rooms and the LDK is "Living Dining Kitchen." I recommend starting of having a look in the Setagaya area where the average price of a 2LDK is 180,000 yen. Remember that these are average prices.
Whats the average cost of rent like in your region?
What we are going to do now is to look at some videos of apartments available below and then look at the apartments that I have been living in since I moved to Tokyo.
Below: Typical apartment in Tokyo - this one in Azabu.
This first photo is where we first stayed at in Tokyo.
The rent was 100,000 yen per month for a 2K (Two rooms and Kitchen).
Location was in the middle of nowhere - Higashi Fushimi in West Tokyo.
Another pic of our first apartment in Higashi Fushimi.
Didnt have much space for a table so used the area meant for storing futons instead. This was a good idea because all that crap would be hidden away when the door was closed. This was also a rather bad idea because the flow of air was bad and sitting facing the inside of this cupboard just made me ill from time to time.
The extra income from the new job at Amazon meant that we could move into Tokyo and upgrade the standard of living a bit. Rent jumped from 100,000 yen to about 175,000 yen for a 2LDK (two rooms, dining and kitchen).
Location was Higashi Matsubara - a few stops from Shibuya.
No macs around at this time - only 5 Windows machines.
Shot of the counter from the kitchen. Jimmy Choo in the background calling London ^^;
The counter kitchen in Higashi Matsubara - tiny ^^;
Then Amazon relocated us to Seattle for a while. Stayed in Harbor Steps downtown. Rent was 1800 USD for a huge living and decent sized bedroom. I was quite shocked at the amount of space we had after living in tiny dwellings in Tokyo.
After 5 months in Seattle, we moved back to Japan.
Amazon put us up in corporate housing for a few months while we looked for a permanent apartment.
The corp housing was Oakwood and rent was about 600,000 yen per month! Good thing Amazon was paying for everything - the apartments were serviced too with maids. Unfortunately they didn't look like the maids that we otaku are used too ^^;
More of the corporate housing. Location was Azabu Jyuban.
Found a permanent apartment in Futago Tamagawa. We chose a terrace house this time - had both floors but as with all terrace houses, it was attached on either side to another house. The noise was terrible...
The rent for two rooms, two toilets, large living room and kitchen was 220,000 yen per month.
There was a riverbank nearby though which was rather nice. The worst thing about living in this area was the train. The Denen Toshi line is said to be the most packed line in Japan - even at 6am in the morning.
Then after about two weeks of moving in, we decide to buy a house - the noise helped with the decision. A few pics of the house which you may have seen - below this photo.