05 May Testimonial: Iced Tea with Tim
We caught up with Australian software engineer, Tim, who recently moved to Japan to start an exciting new job in e-commerce. Tim contacted Apts.jp via a recommendation from a friend, and here he tells us about his experience finding a new home in Tokyo.
Can you tell us about what brought you to Japan?
Well, I was searching for a new job, and the positions available in Perth weren’t what I was looking for at the time. I’d always wanted to go back to Japan so I thought I’d see if there was anything interesting in Tokyo – and there was! So, I took the plunge and did all the craziness of moving over here, and now I’m here.
Awesome! Why did you decide to contact Apts.jp?
This isn’t my first time coming to Japan and when I came the first time I just went on Google and started looking for apartments. The agent I found was good, but it felt like a huge gamble to choose someone at random again, so this time I spoke to a friend and she recommended Apts.jp. It was good to have a friend who could vouch for the company, and I saw they had a lot of great properties on their website so decided to get in touch with them.
How did you find the search, and what features were you looking for?
I didn’t expect Apts.jp to be so thorough! The last time I rented here, the agent just told me “here are the ones available, take them or leave them”, but Apts.jp were fantastic. They met with me in person and had me describe exactly what I wanted, such as the number of rooms, size, location, price and so on. Then they custom tailored their search to find exactly what I’d asked for. It was great, and something I wasn’t expecting.
My main goal was to find an apartment that would allow me to have the same setup I had back in Perth. I had a home office with a computer and a TV for my games, so I needed to be able to fit those things. That was my minimum requirement. I also hoped to find a place with a loft because I had one last time and it made a great bedroom. I think the small elevated space allows for less sound to move around, so it’s quieter and you can sleep better.
What kind of apartment did you end up renting?
Apts.jp were absolutely fantastic and ended up finding me a lovely place in Azabu-Juban, and it came with a loft! I was really impressed with the fact they were able to find a loft apartment within walking distance of my work and at a reasonable price.
What are your favorite things about your apartment, aside from the loft?
The fact it has ethernet in the walls was a huge bonus. My router is set up near the entrance, and the ethernet runs through the walls to the first and second floor. That means if I didn’t want to use wifi, I could plug my tv and console straight into the wall which is great for high-speed gaming.
The apartment also came with a washer/dryer, it’s got a giant bathtub which is really cool, and I thought I’d hit the jackpot when I found out it had two washlet toilets! It also has an unholy amount of wardrobe space. There are so many cabinets I don’t have enough things to fill them all.
Outside there’s a nice view with lots of green, and it’s semi-underground so I have a small courtyard.
What do you like about the location?
First and foremost, the fact that I can walk to my office. I timed it and it’s a 10-minute walk. Literally 10 minutes from my door to my desk, even including the elevator! I feel so bad because some of my colleagues live out in Saitama and tell me how tired they are riding the train every day, and I’m just like “oh… that sounds bad >_>”.
I didn’t know much about the Azabu-Juban area before moving there, but it’s lovely. It has a very different aesthetic to the rest of Japan, there are cobblestone roads and everything feels very homely. There’s plenty of shops nearby, even a 100 Yen store and a little furniture shop. There’s a park close by as well. It’s a very nice neighborhood.
What is your advice to people searching for an apartment in Japan?
Don’t get your hopes set on an apartment before you come to Japan. You can’t apply until you have all your paperwork in order, and they come and go so quickly that if you see one before you arrive, it’ll probably be gone before the time you get here. By all means, look at them as references to figure out what you want, but don’t start picturing yourself in a place until you get to Japan.
When you find somewhere, the window to apply is very narrow so the key is to move quickly. Start setting up the things you need for the application form as soon as you get to Japan, especially during any time you have before you start working. I needed to arrange a guarantor and visit the city office to have my residence card stamped with an address. Thankfully, my company needed an address on my residence card to set up my insurance, so they let me sort it out during work hours. Also, if your agent offers to book a showing you should go as soon as possible because someone else could take it if you put it off.
Do you have any final comments about your experience?
From start to finish, Apts.jp have gone above and beyond the call. Just before I moved in, they went through the apartment with a fine-tooth comb and took note of every scuff and every scratch so when the handover time eventually comes, we can compare the condition with those photographs. Apts.jp made sure I had a very smooth transition moving in, and I’m really glad I decided to use their service.
Thank you, Tim!
We hope you enjoy your new home in Tokyo.
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