Japan’s Housing Vacancy Rates Hits 13.5% Due To Declining Population

A record high 13.5 percent of existing housing units in Japan were vacant as of last Oct. 1, up 0.4 percentage point from five years earlier when the survey was last conducted, the government said Tuesday.

Over that five-year period, the number of vacant housing units increased by 630,000 to a record 8.2 million, as the oversupply has made it difficult to sell or lease poorly located or otherwise unappealing dwellings, the survey by the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry showed.

The survey indicates the need for the central and local governments to address the issue of vacant housing which is expected to increase due to population decline. Decaying vacant housing presents safety hazards, can depress the value of nearby properties and impair scenery.

The housing vacancy rate exceeded 10 percent in 46 of Japan’s 47 prefectures. The rate was the highest in Yamanashi Prefecture at 22.0 percent, followed by 19.8 percent in Nagano and 18.1 percent in Wakayama.

The survey also found that the March 2011 earthquake-tsunami disaster in northeastern Japan had forced 330,000 households to move and 573,000 houses to be refurbished.

via SOURCE

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza