Checklist for viewing sharehouses in Japan

Things you should check in the room of sharehouse

Checklist for staying a sharehouse in JapanWe believe that the most significant part of living in a share house is the interaction with the people you live with. If there are too many share mates, it may be hard to remember faces and names. But if there are too few, you may hardly have a chance to meet them. Taking these factors into consideration, when looking for a share house, be sure to check in advance how many share mates there will be.

  • Is there an air conditioner in the room?
  • Does the room have good sunlight? Which direction are the windows located?
  • How old is the air conditioner (the year of manufacture is written on the sticker)?
  • What kind of furniture is included in the room?
  • Is the size of the bed suitable for your body?
  • Are there curtains on the windows?
  • Do the curtains block out light?
  • Is the brightness of the lighting adequate?
  • Where are the electrical outlets located in the room?
  • Do the doors open inward or outward (if they open inward, the room will be smaller)?
  • Is there storage space?
  • Is the wall between the room and the next room thin?
  • Can you hear the sound of walking in the common corridor?
  • How close is your room to the shared kitchen and living room?
  • What kind of material is the floor made of? (Tatami, carpet, wood flooring)
  • Is the room equipped with a smoke detector?
  • Are there screens on the windows? (There are a lot of mosquitoes in summer in Japan!)
  • In the case of sharing dormitory rooms, will you be allocated the top or bottom bunk?
  • In the case of sharing dormitory rooms, is there a locker in the room?
  • In the case of sharing dormitory rooms, is the bed you are assigned too close to the air conditioner?

Things you should check in the common area of sharehouse

Checklist for staying a sharehouse in JapanWhat kind of facilities are available in the share house, such as the kitchen, bath, toilet, living room, dining room, and laundry facilities for shared use, is a very important factor.
Even if you think you’ve checked it out in the pictures, those pictures are most likely not up to date. If you’re applying to live in a share house without viewing it beforehand, be sure to check with the share house owner or management company for details on the facilities.

  • How spacious is the kitchen, living room, and dining room?
  • Is the number of toilets appropriate for the number of residents?
  • Is the number of shower rooms adequate for the number of residents?
  • Is it possible to soak in the bathtub or is it shower only?
  • Are there any restrictions on how long you can use the shower or bath?
  • Are the common toilets and shower rooms used separately by men and women?
  • Is the number of washing machines appropriate for the number of residents?
  • Is the size of the refrigerator appropriate for the number of residents?
  • Are appliances such as microwave, rice cooker, toaster, etc. available in the kitchen?
  • Is the stove gas or IH type?
  • Is there a TV in the living room that can be used to watch Netflix, Amazon Prime, etc.?
  • Are there enough dishes, cups, utensils, etc. (if not, you will have to wash them more often)?
  • Toilet paper, detergent, etc. are always refilled.
  • Where is the Wifi access point and can you get a good signal to your room?
  • How comfortable is the sofa?
  • What kind of locks are on the front door and in your room?
  • Is there enough shoe storage space at the entrance?
  • Is there a bicycle storage space?
  • Is there is an evacuation route in case of a disaster such as a fire or earthquake?

Things you should check on the lease contract of sharehouse

Checklist for lease contract of sharehouse

  • Whether the contract type is a regular lease contract or a fixed-term lease contract.
    A regular lease contract : 普通賃貸借契約 [Futsu Chintaichaku Keiyaku] (ふつうちんたいしゃくけいやく)
    A fixed-term lease contract : 定期借家契約 [Teiki Shakka Keiyaku] (ていきしゃっかけいやく)
  • If it is a fixed-term lease contract, check the contract period.
  • Whether the contract can be extended or not when the contract period expires.
  • Whether you can cancel the contract in the middle of the contract period or not , and if so, how long the advance notice period is required.
  • Whether you have to pay a penalty fee or not if you cancel the contract in the middle of the contract period.
  • Whether it is possible to pay the rent on a daily basis if you move out in the middle of the month.
  • What will happen if you fail to pay the rent?
  • Will the security deposit be returned? There are cases where a portion of the security deposit is deducted for cleaning fees, etc.
  • Is there a possibility that the landlord will cancel the lease? If so, how long is the cancellation notice period?
  • If the air conditioner, lighting, or other equipment attached to the room breaks down, check if the owner will pay for the repairs.
  • If there is damage to the walls or floor of the room, how much will it cost to restore the room to its original condition?
  • If utilities are paid separately from rent or common service fees, check how you pay for it and how it is shared.
  • How will you pay the rent? And when is the deadline for payment?

Things you should check about the house rules of sharehouse

Checklist for house rules of sharehouse

  • Who will be responsible for cleaning the common areas?
  • Is the management company responsible for taking out the trash, or will the residents be on duty?
  • Who refills the toilet paper, detergent, and other supplies, and how they do it.
  • Whether there are any restrictions on the hours of use of the laundry room.
  • How much is the accommodation fee when friends or family members other than the residents come to stay?

If you are worried about this, you should also ask the following questions beforehand.

Checklist for staying shared houses

  • If there are residents who don’t follow the set house rules, will the management company give them a warning?
  • If there is a resident who makes a lot of noise in the middle of the night or is very annoying, will the management company pay attention to him/her?
  • What are the ages and nationalities of the existing residents?
  • How much should you pay if you lose your room key or break something in the common area?
  • If your goal is to interact with your co-residents, will the management company organize any events for the residents? And how often are they held?

Things you should check environment and location of the area

Checklist for environment and location of sharedhouse

  • How far is the nearest station?
  • If the nearest station is far away, is there a bicycle parking lot at the station? How much is the monthly fee for the bicycle parking?
  • Where is the nearest convenience store?
  • Where is the closest supermarket? Does the supermarket have a wide selection of goods? Are the prices reasonable?
  • Are there any buildings under construction or planned in the neighborhood? If there is a large building under construction near the share house, you may be bothered by the noise of construction for a long time.