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Off-Campus Housing

The monthly rent for an apartment with cooking facilities, a bathroom and a toilet, is 20,000yen-35,000yen. Apartments are not furnished, so you must furnish your apartment yourself.
In Japan, when you sign a contract, it is customary to pay what we call ‘kenri-kin’ (key money) and ‘shiki-kin’ (a deposit). The total of these initial extra expenses will be roughly equivalent to three months’ rent.

Guarantor Commission Subsidy for Foreign Students Studying in Japan

※If you are a student who enrolled Hirosaki University before April 2019, you would not be able to get this subsidy.

Generally speaking, in order to rent an apartment commercially offered in Japan, you will need a guarantor.

Privately financed international students, who enrolled in Hirosaki University and use an insurance company instead of a guarantor when make a contract between realtor, may apply for the guarantor commission subsidy.

If you would like to apply, please read the guideline and submit the application form to Support Office.

Tips to Live in an Apartment

1.How much do I need to spend when I sign a contract with an apartment?

(Read along with item 3)
Generally, you need to pay the following four amounts. Some apartments and agents do not require all of them.

i) Deposit and Key money

When you rent an apartment, you are asked to pay a deposit (amount usually equivalent to one month’s rent, 20,000-35,000yen) and/ or to pay key money (amount also equivalent to one month’s rent). The deposit is spent for costs such as repairs. It will be reimbursed if the cost is less than the deposit. You cannot get the key money reimbursed.

ii) Commission to real estate agents

You are required to pay a commission (the amount equivalent to one month’s rent) to the agent.

iii) Fire Insurance

You are required to hold a fire insurance policy to avoid risks of debt due to cases of fire. A reasonably priced housing insurance policy is prepared by a governmental organization to fulfill needs of international students. You are required to hold this policy.

iv) First month’s rent

You have to prepay the rent (e.g. you need to pay the rent for October before the 30th of September.) If the rent contract begins after the first day of the month, the first month’s rent is paid by the day.

2. What do I need besides money when I sign on the contract?

i) Guarantor

A guarantor is required to co-sign on the contract to avoid any losses incurred by the leaser to the lessee. The director of the Center will act as your guarantor.

ii) Furniture etc.

Most of the apartments in Hirosaki is not furnished, so that you need to buy furniture etc that you need, such as a refrigerator, a study desk, and TV. There are some furnished apartments, but not many available.

3. How can I find an apartment?

i) Through agencies introduced by the Center

A list of the available apartments can be viewed at the Center. Agents for these apartments can be met at the Center too. These agents will provide keys for your apartment as soon as you decide on one. Other agents will not provide keys until the renting process is complete. You don’t have to pay any deposit, key money or commission to these agents. This is the easiest way to find an apartment, particularly for those who are no or quite limited knowledge of Japanese language.
However, on the other hand, the number of the available apartments is limited and new and fancy apartments are not available.
We understand that it is quite difficult for the students with limited Japanese background try to find an accommodation through local agents by your own efforts, so that we will give a priority to those students if too many students request this way.

ii) Through the University COOP

The university COOP has a list of apartments suitable for Hirosaki University students. You can choose your preferred apartment from a much larger list compared with the agents in i). Owners of some apartments don’t require either deposit or key money; however, you are required to pay the commission to the university COOP.

iii) Through local agencies

There are plenty of local agencies available to consult. We can give you some information about those agencies. We can also provide you some information about an apartment with no deposit and key money if available.

4. What procedures do I need to go through?

I. In the case of agencies introduced by the Center

i) Fill in the application form of the housing insurance, and pay a premium at a post office (a part of the premium will be reimbursed).
ii) You will meet a person from the agency and get a detailed explanation about the apartments. Then, you will go to take a look at them with your tutor.
iii) If you decide to rent one of them, you will tell your intention to the agent person, and receive the key
iv) You will open accounts for electricity, gas and water.
v) You will sign on the contract policy.
vi) You will pay the first month’s rent by the day the agency requires.

II. In case of the University COOP or local agencies

i) Fill in the application form of the housing insurance, and pay a premium at a post office (a part of the premium will be reimbursed).
ii) You will go to the office of either the university COOP or local agencies and take a look at the apartment list. Then you will go and take a look at your preferred apartments.
iii) You will fill in an application form after you decide to take one, and your application will be screened (normally you will be accepted as you are guaranteed by the university).
iv) You will sign on the agreement after you get accepted. To make an agreement, you need to show them you Hirosaki University student ID, and the housing insurance policy, and your guarantor (the director of the Center) are required to sign on the agreement, too.
v) You will pay the required fees such as deposit, key money etc. and receive the key. You may be able to receive keys before the procedure iv) if the lessee of the apartment allows, only in cases you consult the university COOP.
vi) You will open accounts for electricity, gas and water.
vii) You will bring required documents such as your Alien Registration card to the agency to complete the procedures.

5. What sort of assistance does the center provide when I look for an apartment?

i) We will introduce a local agent, and will ask them to meet with you at the center office.
ii) We will give information about local agents.
iii) We will help you to take out the housing insurance policy for international students.
iv) The director of the center will become your guarantor for your apartment contract.
v) We will give you some advice regarding rent contracts.
You will be assigned a tutor, who is a student of Hirosaki University. S/he will accompany you and help you when you visit agents and sign the contract.