a step-by-step guide on

how to buy
a house in japan

Your Kyoto Home Awaits: Where Ownership Knows No Boundaries

At Hachise, we're dedicated to making Kyoto's charm and real estate accessible to all – your dream of owning property in Japan is possible, no matter your nationality or residence. Begin your journey with our step-by-step guide.

the procedures, costs and rules that we'd like you to know before purchasing your dream house in Kyoto

Still not sure?
schedule a meeting

book an online consultation session to discuss with our representatives

01 Research & Inquiry

In today's digital age, accessing real estate information online is effortless. Browse through our property listings to find your ideal match. Should you come across a property that captivates you, don't hesitate to contact us. Use our contact form to arrange either an in-person or online viewing, or to seek answers to your inquiries.

Not sure where to begin? Hachise also offers free online consultations to guide you through the house-hunting process. Schedule an appointment here.

Key Takeaways:
  • Utilize our property listings to find your ideal match.
  • Reach out through the contact form to schedule a viewing or ask questions.
  • Book a free online consultation session if you're unsure where to start.
properties for sale

02 Property Viewing

Seeing is believing. Arrange a viewing to experience the property firsthand or opt for a virtual tour if visiting Kyoto isn't feasible. Our representatives will accompany you and address your questions.

During viewings, please take note of crucial property conditions, such as damages, leaks, or boundaries. As Kyomachiya and old houses vary in condition due to age, we ask buyers to accept properties as they are.

Key Takeaways:
  • Experience properties in person or via virtual tours.
  • Take note of property conditions during viewings.

◆ For specific considerations when buying a Kyomachiya or a used house, check here:

insights before purchase

03 Purchase Application

Ready to take the next step? Submit a purchase application by completing the “Letter of Intent (LOI)”. This non-binding letter expresses your interest in purchasing and outlines terms, including the expected property price and payment procedure. Submitting the LOI online is easy – just attach your personal identification.

Key Takeaways:
  • Express your interest by submitting a purchase application.
  • You may submit online by attaching your personal id.
  • Our experts will help prepare necessary documents and guide the process.

04 Contract Conclusion

Congratulations! Once both parties have agreed in conditions, we'll proceed with the contract. We'll prepare all the contract documents and send them to you for review.

■ About the contract:

For contract conclusion, you can either visit our Kyoto office or use our online electronic contract service for remote signing. During the meeting, either we or the designated broker will explain the contract's terms before you sign (this follows the Building Lots and Buildings Transaction Business Act). The meeting typically takes around 2~3 hours.

Note that all contract-related documents will be in Japanese. If needed, our English-speaking staff can provide verbal translation. For professional translations in your native language, we recommend hiring a translator or solicitor/attorney with expertise in real estate laws.

■ Fees to be settled:

At this stage, please ensure you have the earnest money deposit (10% of the purchase price) ready in Japanese Yen. This acts as both a payment portion and a guarantee deposit for penalties. Payment can be done either in cash during contract signing or through a bank transfer.

We'll also collect the stamp duty (for paper contract only) and the first half of the agent commission (if applicable) during this meeting.

Key Takeaways:
  • Choose in-person or remote signing options.
  • Earnest money deposit: 10% of the purchasing price will be required at this stage
  • Other fees to be settled: stamp duty and the first half of the agent commission (if applicable)
  • Governing lanuguage of documents will be in Japanese, but Hachise can provide verbal translation in English or Chinese.

◆ Learn more about taxes and costs here:

taxes &costs

05 Closing

As we approach the finish line, it's time to complete the payment and necessary paperwork. Make the payment in a lump sum, either in cash at our office or via bank transfer in Japanese Yen by the closing date. The second half of the agent commission (if applicable) and the settlement amount for pro-rated tax will be also collected at this stage.

You have two options for closing: visit our Kyoto office in person or prepare extra documents in case you can't be present. After confirming your payment, we'll guide you through the property title transfer process and hand over the keys. Make sure to have your real estate solicitor or attorney present during the closing; they will also promptly register the title transfer at the Legal Affairs Bureau after the meeting.

It is also crucial to choose your home insurance once closing process is done so to safeguards you against property loss or damage. We can introduce you to an insurance company that offers suitable home insurance.

Key Takeaways:
  • Complete remaining payment and paperwork before the closing date.
  • Choose in-person or remote closing, with solicitor/attorney present.
  • Settle agent commission (if applicable), pro-rated tax, and solicitor fee.
  • Consider home insurance once all the processes is done.

◆ About Solicitor/Attorney:

In Japan, solicitor/attorneys handle legal process regarding real estate transactions, such as certificate preparation and title transfer. We can introduce solicitors/attorneys who conduct business in English. Other solicitors and attorney are also welcomed but he/she must be a Japanese native and possess the necessary skills and knowledge in real estate transaction with foreign clients.

06 Before Moving-in

Welcome to your new experience in Kyoto! As you prepare for this exciting journey, make sure to set up utilities like gas, electricity, and water for your new home before moving in.
In Kyoto, you can conveniently pay all utility bills using credit cards. If you have a Japanese bank account, electronic withdrawal is also an option.

Additionally, if you are a non-resident of Japan, you are required to appoint a tax administrator. This individual will receive documents from the tax office and manage tax payments, such as fixed asset tax, on your behalf.

Key Takeaways:
  • Set up utilities before moving in.
  • Utility bills can be paid conveniently with credit cards.
  • Appoint a tax administrator if you are a non-resident of Japan.

◆ Also explore Hachise's after-purchase services for comprehensive support:

after services
Still not sure?
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