The first step is to define your investment criteria, whether it is short or long term, focused on higher short-term returns or stable long-term returns, or even a second home for personal use. As well as the nature and size of investment, considerations include your anticipated return, level of risk, and type of property you are interested in—commercial, retail or residential.
Hikari Homes can introduce you to an overview of the market and investment environment, including short and long term trends for property investment by both local and international investors. We will talk to you about the size and type of the investment, and help refine the search for the type of building and area to suit your purposes, and its ultimate use.
Having defined the investment criteria, the next step is to narrow the market by making an initial selection of properties that meet the agreed criteria.
Discussions of the initial selection will enable us to arrive at a short list of potential investment properties together. It is now time for an on-site inspection and familiarization to hone the selection, and if all goes well to select the appropriate property that meets your criteria.
Hikari Homes will organize and coordinate access and inspections to suit your timetable, and provide any information and assistance you need to arrive an informed decision.
Once you have selected an apartment, it is time to make an offer to purchase. This is the first formal step in the purchase process in Japan, notifying the seller that you intend to purchase if terms can be agreed, and conditional on completing financing. The “Offer” needs to include a price, date the offer is live until, special requests, and a note of conditional elements. This is an opening bid, that can be negotiated between buyer and seller.
Hikari Homes can advise and assist you in making the offer, assist with all negotiations, and provide you clear guidance on what to expect from the process.
Once price and conditions have been agreed between you and the property seller, it is time to conclude a formal contract. Both buyer and seller need to formally state the conditions associated with the transaction, and any over-riding conditions affecting the property and transactions. The formal acceptance of the offer includes a deposit against the full cost of the purchase. Typically, the deposit is 10% of the full cost of purchase. Most contracts carry a conditional clause related to finalizing financing of the purchase.
Hikari Homes can assist with the negotiations and organizing the formal offer, and all paper work and transactions involved.
Once the price and conditions have been agreed between you and the property seller, and the contract concluded, it is time to finalize financing. The majority of our clients have their own financing in place.
Once finances have been arranged, it is time to make the final payment of the outstanding balance and take ownership. The necessary legal documents are completed and exchanged, and the outstanding balance paid.
Prior to the final handover of the property, the buyer and owner and their representatives make a physical check of the property together, to confirm that all conditions related to the property itself have been fulfilled. For properties that are already occupied, this includes transferring rental payments to the new owner. For unoccupied properties, a due date for occupation is fixed (usually immediate) and in the case of an apartment in an apartment building, the building manager informed.
Hikari Homes can assist with the property check, settling of details, and any organization required for occupying a property, including relocation companies.
All property ownership transactions in Japan are subject to three taxes: a stamp duty tax on the contract; a real estate license tax for registering ownership, often in two parts: land and building; and a real estate acquisition tax on the purchase of land and building. In addition, there is an annual asset tax and a city tax on ownership of the property.
Once you have ownership of the property, Hikari Homes can help you to add value to your investment.
Hikari Homes can help you to leverage your investment. We have close connections with design and construction companies if you want to renovate or repurpose an apartment or building. Once this has been complete, we can manage the property for both rental and maintenance services.