#tokyo real estate
Mori Building Co. Ltd. An image of one of the penthouses in the Hirakawacho Mori Tower Residence in Tokyo.
In another sign that Tokyo is easing past the economic stagnation hobbling the rest of the country, the number of condominiums put up for sale in the capital and surrounding region grew 22% in 2010 compared to the previous year, according to the Real Estate Economic Institute Co.
It marks the first rise in six years, a surge riding on the back of government policies offering tax benefits on mortgage loans and low interest rates. In December alone the number of contracts signed to purchase new condo units in the Tokyo metropolitan area rose 10 percentage points to 78.6%. And developers are keeping pace. The number of new condo units added to Tokyo’s concrete jungle and three neighboring prefectures jumped 41% to 7,388, compared to December 2009.
Wait, there’s more: Sale prices also climbed for the first time in two years, inching up to an average of 47.16 million yen ($574,025), showing an uptick in high-end homes. Nearly 50% more condos valued at 100 million yen, or $1.2 million, and above hit the Tokyo area real estate listings. So it’s not a huge shock that the priciest listing in the country is nestled next to Japan’s parliament building, a luxurious penthouse built by Mori Building, the giant real estate developing company behind fancy Tokyo property like Roppongi Hills and Ark Hills. Yours, for a mere $9.98 million. Perhaps worth noting, however, is that the Mori listing is still up for grabs, though it’s technically been open for applications since February last year.
But if selling real estate in Tokyo may be coming back to be something of a breeze, the numbers weren’t as balmy elsewhere. New condo releases dropped 4.7% to 1,682 in the Kinki region that encompasses Osaka, the country’s second largest city, in December. Signed purchase contracts also dropped three percentage points to 71% compared to the same month the previous year.
But even here, there are faint glimmers of hope: Despite the drop, it is still a sound improvement compared to December 2008 when 59% of contracts were signed.