Feb 2, 2016

House Hunters International: Hard to Find in Hyuga

Jodi  has just moved to Hyuga, Japan after landing her first real job. After toughing it out in the teacher’s housing for over six months, she is looking for somewhere close to her work and with modern amenities, but she knows that money is an issue and will have to keep an eye on her budget. Will she be able to find her perfect second story apartment without breaking the bank? Find out on today’s episode.

Here’s Jodi’s wish list:

  • At most a 10 minute bike ride from work.
  • 1LDK-2LDK (LDK means living room, dining area, and kitchen.  The dining area is typically just part of the kitchen)
  • 2 floor or higher.
  • Built within the last 10 years.
Apartment one is a two bedroom, first floor apartment.  It’s a five minute walk from her work.  The rent is the low end of her budget and was built in 2005.  It’s a corner unit and it has all the modern amenities Jodi is looking for.  There is no key money, but the first and last month's rent are needed upfront.  

Apartment two is an 18 minute walk from work and the train station.  It is on the second floor with a private staircase and is the middle of her budget.  The building was built in 2005.  There is no tatami in the apartment and somewhat of an actual inclusive bathroom.  Though it’s technically still in the same area of town she currently lives in, it is significantly closer.  It is a one minute walk from her dojo and another member of her company.  As it is owned by the same real estate company as apartment #1, it also has no key money, but a deposit is required.  A cleaning fee is also tacked on to both of the apartments. 

Apartment 3 is an artistic townhouse style building built in early 2012.  The unit is 1LDK and has two floors.  The living room features a large window and an picturesque view.  The building is located in the western part of the city and is a 14 minute walk to school.  Though the building is modern and beautiful, it is a bit cramped and strangely arranged.  The bathroom sink is located under the stairs and the toilet is right inside of the entryway.

Which apartment will Jodi choose?

Jodi: Well, after the mukade incident, I don’t think I can deal with being on the first floor.  I also feel a bit claustrophobic at the idea of being on the bottom floor.  I need to be up higher.  I think we can go ahead and eliminate apartment number one.

So what will it be?  The spacious second floor apartment that’s a little bit of a longer commute or the artsy apartment with the picturesque bedroom loft?

Find out, after the commercial break.


Jodi is a young Assistant Language Teacher living in Hyuga, Miyazaki-ken, Japan.  After a whirlwind week of deciding she needed to move, having her parents tell her she needed to move, and looking for apartments, she’s narrowed her search down to two apartments.

So what will it be?  The artsy modern building with a bedroom loft?  Or the spacious two bedroom apartment with the private stairs?

Jodi: I’m going with Apartment number two.  The spacious two bedroom.

Jodi has chosen the two bedroom apartment.  It’s still a little further away than she had hoped, but she knows the area well and it’s a good amount of space for the price.

Now that she’s decided, all that’s left to do is call the real estate company.


The whole process of finding a new apartment went fairly smoothly, though it happened a lot more quickly than I thought it would.  I had to start my lease only a week or two after I found the place, at the start of the month, or risk losing it.  

The many small costs started to add up quickly and the whole moving process cost me about 200,000 yen.  In the end, though, the move was well worth it. 



An American woman living in southern Japan.
Check out my main blog at: journeyingjodi.wordpress.com/


  • Yuju

    on Feb 2

    So shiny and bright, this one LOOKS REALLY NICE! I love it! I moved new apartment recently, but really dark.

  • Jodi

    on Feb 2

    @Yuju That was one thing I love about Japanese architecture: it's really easy to find an apartment with lots of light and big windows. It faces south, so it doesn't get too hot from direct sunlight in the summer either. I love it too! ^_^