Electric blanket for Japanese winter bedding

By | Japanese House, Life in Japan, Property

The fun Christmas season of December is approaching. Japan is about to enter the winter season in earnest.
“Warm even in winter” is the most important factor in assessing the value of a home.

However, for foreigners, Japanese housing has the problem that it is very cold in winter. It feels cold not only for foreigners from hot Southeast Asian countries but also for foreigners from cold regions such as North America and Europe.
I spent my high school days in Hokkaido, and although it was cold outdoors, the inside of the building didn’t feel as cold as Osaka or Tokyo.

Most Japanese rental apartments do not contain the heat insulating material that should be put in the interior floor, wall, and ceiling in order to reduce the construction cost. The rental apartments where heat insulating materials are firmly installed on the floor, walls, and ceiling are very different from rental apartments where heat insulating materials are not installed. The comfort of living differs entirely.

Most of the general owners and lessees do not have any knowledge about this. In fact, there are many cases where construction companies skip the work process of adding heat insulating material to make construction easier.

In the case of detached houses, there are many properties where the underfloor on the first floor is left as soil. The old houses were still soil, and wooden houses were built on the soil. Therefore, turning the floorboard is the same as the soil like the field.

You can prevent the cold to some extent by pouring concrete over this soil to make it a “solid foundation”. At the cost of construction, the underfloor of a wooden detached house can be made of concrete.

But concrete is still cold in winter (and hot in summer).

Since the building is also made of concrete, when the concrete gets cold in winter, the room inevitably gets cold. Depending on the property, it might be warmer outside the apartment building in winter than inside the apartment building. This is because the concrete of the building’s frame gets cold.

Therefore, what is important is a heater that heats the air such as an air conditioner and “bedding”.

Please check the followings in order to make your bedding warmer for Japanese winter.

(1) Double the comforters.
The comforters we provide are ① one summer comforter and ➁ one spring / autumn comforter. Please snap ①summer comforter on ➁spring/ autumn comforter.  Then a winter comforter could be made. After doubling it, put the comforter cover on it in one piece.

How to set up 冬のふとん – 外国人駐在員・外交官向け 高級住宅 (

(2) Add a blanket to the comforter (VITGROE)
VITGRÖE ヴィートグローエ 毛布, ホワイト, 150×200 cm – IKEA

(3) Change the comforter cover from sheets to a blanket cover
KRANSSALVIA クランサルヴィア 掛け布団カバー&枕カバー(枕カバー2枚), ホワイト, 200×200/50×60 cm – IKEA

(4) Add another blanket to the mattress

(5) Change the blanket of the mattress to an “electric blanket”
Amazon | 電気毛布 ひざ掛け 掛け毛布 電気ブランケット フランネル 厚手 160cmx130cm大きさ ダブル タイマー ボタン式温度調整 安全保護機能付き ギフト ダニ退治 丸洗い 洗濯可能 省エネ PSE認証済み | singway | 電気毛布・ひざ掛け 通販

My recommendation is No.(5) electric blanket.
I love this electric blanket.
I have never felt that an electric blanket is bad for my body.
It is warm and makes people to sleep longer. The reason why people can’t sleep in winter is often due to the cold temperature. You can sleep well if the bedding is warm.
If you use an electric blanket, you will not want to get out of bed because it is warm and too comfortable inside the bed.

With an electric blanket, the winter bedding problem is completely solved.

The Kitahama and Complex Use

By | Life Style, Property, Real Estate

The Kitahama is located directly above Kitahama Station on the Sakaisuji Subway Line. It is also connected to Kitahama Station on the Keihan Line by an underground passage. Because it is near the street of Doshomachi, a historically famous pharmaceutical company town in Osaka, there are many historic buildings nearby. The Mitsukoshi department store was demolished and The Kitahama was built using the site.

The Kitahama is proudly the number one in the popularity ranking of Sumitomo Realty & Development’s 2020 edition.


In Japan, industrialization progressed rapidly from 1950 to 1990 after the war. In order to develop the manufacturing industry efficiently, restricted areas (zoning) have been defined in the urban development plan by Japanese government. The factory area, residential area, and commercial area have been set separately. As a result, good housing was located in the suburbs, and the living environment in Osaka was not good. Since around 1990, tower type high rise apartment buildings have been built in central Osaka. And people who lived in the suburbs began to move to the center of Osaka. This is because tower type apartment have made it possible to create a better living environment than a quiet living environment in the suburbs.

The Kitahama area has the historic atmosphere of “Doshomachi” and the atmosphere of the office district of the stock exchange. It’s not a bar like Namba or Dotonbori, so Kitahama area is safe and the nature of the locality of Kitahama is elegant. There are no large department stores. There is no electric shop, so people have to go shopping to Yodobashi Camera in Umeda.

The Kitahama is adjacent to a commercial facility called KITAHAMA PLAZA. It is very convenient for daily life to have a Konami gym, a food supermarket and restaurants. Konami here is classified as a high-grade one with a large facility and beauty. All the shops in KITAHAMA PLAZA are of high grade, so they are preferred by wealthy customers. The residents of The Kitahama are also wealthy people, so the building and the surrounding area have a luxurious atmosphere.

Such real estate development is called “Complex Use”. Complex development is close to work and residence. Complex development means a break from the Japanese old-style life of working at a factory for a fixed amount of time and returning home on a crowded train. People work in a cafe on a laptop computer. Work meetings end up in a cafe next to the apartment. Playing while working. From such a lifestyle, people can generate intellectual ideas. The “Complex Use” is a lifestyle for intellectual labor in a knowledge-information society, not Japanese traditional mechanical labor in a factory.


By | Property





如果您去Yodobashi Camera(家用电器商店),则会发现很多家用电器。在日本,事情到处都是。家用电器由于大量生产而供过于求。然而,如何使用家用电器非常复杂并且消费者难以理解。对于外国人来说,这是一项艰巨的任务,几乎无法理解。说实话,日本人和外国人都很难阅读和理解用日语编写的使用说明书。在淀桥相机商店,很少有店员会介绍这些产品。



How to choose a real estate property

By | Property

(Author: Masahiro Fukai, Photo by Dios: Nakanoshima&Fukushima)

When choosing a real estate property, you choose from multiple properties and decide, but I think that no matter which property you choose, there is no problem with the interior of the property. The reason is that the comfort of living in a house is largely determined by the interior design (furniture, home appliances, information technology, cleaning, management, services). The location, sunlight, surrounding environment, etc. of the property cannot be changed after moving in. However, most of the other important items are not the building, but the various services that are the added value of the building.

I think the current housing in Japan is significantly lacking in service. The selling price of a house is the price per tsubo. In other words, the price of Japanese housing is determined in proportion to the size. The value of a house has nothing to do with its size. An American customer of our company was previously told by me “Nonsense!” That’s right. Still, the pricing of all Japanese homes is nonsense.

From now on, Japanese housing will be oversupplied. Overbuilding new condominiums, while the Japanese population will continue to decline.

If you go to Yodobashi Camera (home appliances store), you will find a lot of home appliances. Things are overflowing in Japan. Home appliances are oversupplied due to mass production. However, how to use home appliances is very complicated and difficult for consumers to understand. For foreigners, it is a difficult task that is almost impossible to understand. To tell the truth, it is very difficult for Japanese people as well as foreigners to read and understand the instruction manual written in Japanese. And there are very few clerk in the Yodobashi Camera store who explain the products.

Mass production and mass consumption boosted the economy, but as a result, life in Japan today has become extremely difficult.

When selecting and deciding on a real estate property, the building is not much different from any property. What is important is what kind of service the real estate agent provides to the customer.

Japanisches Badezimmer

By | Life in Japan, Life Style, Property, Real Estate

(Autor: Masahiro Fukai)

Ich möchte hier das Problem der Badezimmer in japanischen Eigentumswohnungen erklären.

Japaner lieben das Baden, deshalb geben sie heißes Wasser in die Badewanne und tränken ihren Körper für eine lange Zeit, beispielsweise 30 Minuten, um ein Bad zu nehmen. Ausländer benutzen nur die Dusche und die Zeit, in der sie duschen, beträgt nur etwa 10 Minuten.

Trotzdem hat das japanische Gehäuse ein Badezimmer, eine Toilette und ein Ankleidezimmer. Japaner haben jedoch keine Probleme mit diesem Grundriss. Der Grund dafür ist, dass Bad, Toilette und Ankleidezimmer unabhängig voneinander sind und die Privatsphäre angemessen geschützt ist. Japanische Häuser sind etwa 20 m2 groß, und Ein-Personen-Studio-Apartments sind Einheitsbäder, aber Häuser, in denen zwei oder mehr Personen leben, sind keine Einheitsbäder.

Sehr selten haben japanische Häuser zwei Toiletten. Es gibt nur einen Grund. Der Grund ist, wenn das Haus groß und weit weg ist. Bei einem zweistöckigen Gebäude gibt es zwei Toiletten, da die Leute die Treppe hoch und runter gehen müssen, um zu den Toiletten im zweiten bis ersten Stock zu gelangen. Wenn Sie eine Wohnanlage mit 160 m2 oder mehr haben oder wenn der Grundriss lang und schmal ist und der Abstand von einem Ende zum anderen sehr groß ist, wird ein Grundriss mit zwei Toiletten entworfen.

Ich habe in einem Studentenwohnheim in Boston, USA, gelebt. Wir waren drei Leute und lebten zusammen. Es gab nur ein Badezimmer. Zu dieser Zeit fühlte ich mich schrecklich unwohl. Ich habe noch nie eine solche Unannehmlichkeit in einer japanischen Wohnanlage gespürt. Am Morgen, während jemand etwa 10 Minuten lang duscht, sind die Toilette und das Zähneputzen sehr unpraktisch. Die Privatsphäre der amerikanischen Badezimmer ist nicht geschützt. Für Eigentumswohnungen in den USA benötigen Sie mindestens zwei Badezimmer. Dies liegt daran, dass das Badezimmer in den USA das gleiche ist wie das Badezimmer in einem Studio-Apartment für eine Person in Japan.

Ausländer, die noch nie in einer japanischen Wohnanlage gelebt haben, können sich das nur schwer vorstellen.

Auch Ausländer haben je nach Land unterschiedliche Lebensstile. Amerikaner, Chinesen und Thailänder haben unterschiedliche Lebensstile. Ich arbeite seit über 20 Jahren in der Unterbringung von Ausländern, habe aber immer noch kein 100% iges Verständnis für den Lebensstil von Ausländern.

Es gibt zwei mögliche Probleme.
(1) Ausländer können das japanische Wohndesign nicht verstehen und sich vorstellen.
(2) Ich kann den Lebensstil von Ausländern nicht verstehen und mir vorstellen.

Was ich ohne Zweifel sagen kann, ist, dass die Bodengestaltung japanischer Eigentumswohnungen (ein Badezimmer, eine Toilette, ein Waschtisch) für alle Japaner vollkommen in Ordnung ist, egal wie einkommensstark sie sind.


By | Life in Japan, Life Style, Property, Real Estate

(ผู้แต่ง: Masahiro Fukai)


คนญี่ปุ่นชอบอาบน้ำจึงใส่น้ำร้อนลงในอ่างอาบน้ำและแช่ตัวเป็นเวลานานเช่น 30 นาทีเพื่ออาบน้ำ ชาวต่างชาติใช้เฉพาะฝักบัวและเวลาที่พวกเขาอาบน้ำเพียง 10 นาที

อย่างไรก็ตามบ้านสไตล์ญี่ปุ่นมีห้องน้ำ 1 ห้องห้องสุขา 1 ห้องและห้องแต่งตัว 1 ห้อง อย่างไรก็ตามคนญี่ปุ่นไม่มีปัญหากับแผนผังชั้นนี้ เหตุผลก็คือห้องน้ำห้องสุขาและห้องแต่งตัวแยกจากกันและได้รับการคุ้มครองความเป็นส่วนตัวอย่างเหมาะสม บ้านญี่ปุ่นมีพื้นที่ประมาณ 20 ตร.ม. และสตูดิโออพาร์ทเมนท์สำหรับ 1 คนเป็นห้องอาบน้ำ แต่บ้านที่มีคนสองคนขึ้นไปอาศัยอยู่ไม่ใช่ห้องอาบน้ำ

บ้านญี่ปุ่นมีห้องสุขาสองห้องน้อยมาก มีเพียงเหตุผลเดียว เหตุเกิดเมื่อบ้านใหญ่และไกล ในกรณีที่เป็นอาคารสองชั้นมีห้องสุขา 2 ห้องเนื่องจากผู้คนต้องขึ้นลงบันไดเพื่อไปห้องสุขาชั้น 2 ถึงชั้นหนึ่ง นอกจากนี้หากคุณมีอาคารชุดพักอาศัยขนาด 160 ตร.ม. ขึ้นไปหรือหากแผนผังชั้นยาวและแคบและระยะทางจากปลายด้านหนึ่งไปอีกด้านหนึ่งยาวมากจะมีการออกแบบแผนผังที่มีห้องสุขา 2 ห้อง

ฉันอาศัยอยู่ในหอพักของวิทยาลัยในบอสตันสหรัฐอเมริกา เราสามคนและอยู่ด้วยกัน มีห้องน้ำเพียงห้องเดียว ในเวลานี้ฉันรู้สึกไม่สะดวกอย่างมาก ฉันไม่เคยรู้สึกถึงความไม่สะดวกเช่นนี้ในคอนโดมิเนียมที่อยู่อาศัยของญี่ปุ่น ในตอนเช้าขณะที่ใครบางคนกำลังอาบน้ำประมาณ 10 นาทีการเข้าห้องน้ำและการแปรงฟันจะไม่สะดวกมาก ความเป็นส่วนตัวของห้องน้ำอเมริกันไม่ได้รับการคุ้มครอง สำหรับอาคารชุดพักอาศัยในสหรัฐอเมริกาคุณต้องมีห้องน้ำอย่างน้อยสองห้อง เนื่องจากห้องน้ำในสหรัฐอเมริกาเป็นแบบเดียวกับห้องน้ำในสตูดิโออพาร์ตเมนต์สำหรับหนึ่งคนในญี่ปุ่น


อีกทั้งชาวต่างชาติก็มีไลฟ์สไตล์ที่แตกต่างกันไปตามแต่ละประเทศ คนอเมริกันจีนและคนไทยมีไลฟ์สไตล์ที่แตกต่างกัน ฉันทำงานด้านที่อยู่อาศัยสำหรับชาวต่างชาติมานานกว่า 20 ปีแล้ว แต่ฉันยังไม่เข้าใจไลฟ์สไตล์ของชาวต่างชาติ 100%

(1) ชาวต่างชาติไม่สามารถเข้าใจและจินตนาการถึงการออกแบบที่อยู่อาศัยของญี่ปุ่นได้
(2) ฉันไม่สามารถเข้าใจและจินตนาการถึงวิถีชีวิตของชาวต่างชาติได้

สิ่งที่ฉันสามารถพูดได้อย่างไม่ต้องสงสัยก็คือไม่ว่าผู้มีรายได้สูงจะเป็นอย่างไรการออกแบบพื้นของอาคารชุดพักอาศัยแบบญี่ปุ่น (ห้องน้ำ 1 ห้องห้องสุขาโต๊ะเครื่องแป้ง 1 ห้อง) เหมาะอย่างยิ่งสำหรับคนญี่ปุ่นทุกคน

Japanese Bathroom

By | Life Style, Property

(Author: Masahiro Fukai)

I would like to explain here the problem of bathrooms in Japanese residential condominiums.

Japanese people love bathing, so they put hot water in the bathtub and soak their bodies for a long time, such as 30 minutes, to take a bath. Foreigners only use the shower, and the time they take a shower is only about 10 minutes.

Nevertheless, Japanese housing has one bathroom, one toilet, and one dressing room. However, Japanese people have no trouble with this floor plan. The reason is that the bathroom, toilet, and dressing room are independent of each other, and privacy is properly protected. Japanese houses are about 20 m2, and one-person studio apartments are unit baths, but houses where two or more people live are not unit baths.

Very rarely, Japanese houses have two toilets. There is only one reason. The reason is when the house is big and far away. In the case of a two-story building, there are two toilets because people have to go up and down the stairs to get to the toilets on the second to first floors. Also, if you have a residential condominium of 160 m2 or more, or if the floor plan is long and narrow and the distance from one end to the other is very long, a floor plan with two toilets will be designed.

I have lived in a college dormitory in Boston, USA. We were three people and lived together. There was only one bathroom. At this time, I felt terribly inconvenient. I have never felt such an inconvenience in a Japanese residential condominium. In the morning, while someone is taking a shower for about 10 minutes, the toilet and brushing teeth are very inconvenient. The privacy of American bathrooms is not protected. For residential condominiums in the United States, you need at least two bathrooms. This is because the bathroom in the United States is the same as the bathroom in a studio apartment for one person in Japan.

Foreigners who have never lived in a Japanese residential condominium may find it difficult to imagine this.

Also, foreigners have different lifestyles depending on the country. Americans, Chinese, and Thais have different lifestyles. I’ve been working in housing for foreigners for over 20 years, but I still don’t have a 100% grasp of the lifestyle of foreigners.

There are two possible problems.
(1) Foreigners cannot understand and imagine Japanese housing design.
(2) I cannot understand and imagine the lifestyle of foreigners.

What I can say without a doubt is that no matter how high-income earners are, the floor design of Japanese residential condominiums (one bathroom, one toilet, one vanity) is perfectly fine for all Japanese people.

Realtors shall explain about the risk of Flood damage

By | Property

Japanese government decided to make the explanation of a risk of flood damage compulsory from this August 2020. Realtors shall analyse the risk and report it for customers.

In fact these past years abnormal weather increases all over the word.

In 2018 there was a large scale rainfall in west Japan. The above photo (Kyodo) is Okayama prefecture then. The heavy rain caused the river to overflow its banks. Its damage was not only one day. The houses flooded below the floor continued over one month.

I feel there were a lot of rainfall recent years in Osaka, too.

According to a UN report the frequency of abnormal weather is increasing with the years. It is very likely that heavy precipitation events will continue to become more frequent.

(Photo by weather news) West Japan torrential rain in 2018
(purple) above waist
(red) above knee
(yellow) above ankle
(blue) a big rain puddle

(Photo: Yomiuri)

In case an individual house may be flooded above the floor. So a property had better be located on elevated ground. Otherwise a house is build on a ground raised by a stone wall like the house below.

In case an apartment when the elevator is flooded and stopped, the upper units of a high rise building will be cut off.

(Photo: Osaka city government’s flood hazard map)

I think Japanese government made the right decision.

After this house hunters should think about the risk of flood damage and realtors shall analyse and report for clients.

Ashiya Royal Homes #501 (323.76㎡)

By | Property, Real Estate

Ashiya Royal Homes is very special apartment as the Japanese real estate property.

Ashiya Royal Homes is designed exclusively for foreign executive expats from the early planning stage. There are two full bathrooms and one separate shower room. So the total number of baths is three. Toilets are also three which can guarantee the guest’s privacy.

The 103 square meters living room is enough space to hold formal receptions in this apartment.

The reason why I recommend Ashiya Royala Homes is the apartment caretaker. I think the most important point for rental apartments is the management services. Especially in case of foreigners there are many difficult life because of languages. If the apartment has kind management service, the property would enhance the satisfaction levels.

Mr. Suzuki, the manager of Ashiya Royal Homes, is a talented person rich in experience for building management. He speaks English well, however he study hard German, Chinese, etc when foreign customers are living in his apartment. Mr. Suzuki has a deep desire to be of service.

Ashiya Royal Homes was established on the land of Mr. Nakauchi, the founder of Japan’s top supermarket in 1991 exclusively for foreigners to reside in Japan.

Ashiya Royal Homes is 5 minutes walk from JR Ashiya station. It is only 13 minutes from JR Ashiya station to Osaka station.

“Ashiya” is the top upper-class residential area in Japan. So people’s standard of living is very high. You could understand this meaning if you do in Ashiya. Also there are many very good restaurants and cafe in this area.

“Ashiya” is close to natural mountain of Rokko and on the other hand very good to access of Osaka City for business, too.

In recent years there are worldwide repeated natural disaster. Japan is a country subject to earthquake and Tsunami. The coastal artificial island like Rokko Island is very vulnerable to disaster.


Floor plan, the natural environment, living people’s level, convenience to business, safety for disaster. All factors considered, Ashiya Royal Homes is recommended apartment.

Name: Ashiya Royal Homes

Room : 501

Address: 20-10, Ohara-cho, Ashiya City

Floor plan: 5 bedrooms with 2 full baths, 1 shower, and 3 toilets.

Monthly rent: 990,000JPY

Deposit (refundable): 1,980,000 JPY

Deposit(non-refundable): 1,980,000JPY

Area: 333.76 ㎡

Construction: 1991

Parking space : available 22,000JPY