Real Estate Vocabulary

Rent (Yachin 家賃)

Rent is generally paid monthly, in advance, to the owner. In some cases there is a late fee if the payment is overdue.

Reservation Fee (Tetsukekin 手付金)

This reserves the apartment once you have decided on one but before you have signed the contract. Once paid the apartment cannot be given to someone else out fom under you, but you cannot change your mind without losing your deposit either. This fee is paid when you apply for the apartment, and is usually given back to you once the contract is signed. Generally, this fee will be about 1 months’ rent.

Deposit (shikikin 敷金)

Security deposits cover possible future damage to the apartment during tenancy. After the move-out inspection the tenant will receive back this deposit, minus the cost of  restoring the property to its original condition. This deposit will generally be between 0-3 months’ rent.

Key money (reikin 礼金)

Key money is a non-refundable payment to the landlord that can be anywhere between 0-6 months’ rent.

Real Estate Commission (chukai tesuryo 仲介手数料)

The service fee is the real estate agents fee for brokering the deal for the apartment; it is of course, non-refundable. This fee is legally limited to 1 months’ rent in Japan.

Maintenance Fee (kyoekihi 共益費)

A monthly fee for general building maintenance, including grounds and upkeep of the structure.