The Japanese media keeps harping on how the prices of condominiums in the major cities are dropping along with the number of housing starts. Obviously, now is the time to buy, though experts always say that if you wait until it’s being reported that it’s time to buy, then it’s already too late.
According to a recent article in Shukan Asahi, condo developers are stuck with inventory that they can’t get rid of, no matter how much they lower the price. Many of these companies are selling their unsold condos to outside agents for as much as 30 percent less. In some cases, these agencies have to sell the units for even less than what they paid for them, basically “dumping” these units onto the housing market. Needless to say there are many people who may be interested in such cheap housing, but finding these units takes more time and effort than they have. There seems to be no one place where this information is available.
What’s finally attracting more interest is older condos that are available dirt cheap. The article uses the example of an editor who bought a small 35-year-old maisonette-style apartment in trendy Kichijoji for only ¥5 million and then spent ¥2 million fixing it up into an “English-style” residence.